Substance Abuse

2019 National Conference on Juvenile Justice

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Devin Reaves to Keynote NCJFCJ National Conference on Juvenile Justice

NCJFCJ Announces $11.2 Million in Grants in 2017 to Improve Outcomes for Children and Families

Military families, drug treatment and domestic violence
continue to be key focuses

Become a New Site with the NCJFCJ Juvenile Drug Treatment Court Learning Collaborative

Opioid Addiction & Treatment in Tribal Communities

Sean Bear, 1st, Consultant, Native American Indian and Alaska Native Addiction Technology Transfer Center
Honorable Kim McGinnis, Ph.D., Esq., Chief Judge, Pueblo of Pojoaque Tribal Court
Dr. Anne Skinstad, Clinical Professor & Director, Native American Indian and Alaska Native Addiction Technology Transfer Center

Neuropharmacology and Neuroscience of Addiction: Understanding the Brain Science

Honorable Kim McGinnis, Ph.D., Esq., Chief Judge, Pueblo of Pojoaque Tribal Court Ansley Sherman (Muscogee Creek), Program Attorney, National American Indian Court Judges Association

Using Continuous Quality Improvement (CQI) to Create Your Perfect Juvenile Drug Treatment Court

CQI is a process that can help juvenile justice organizations, including Juvenile Drug Courts, use their own data to continually improve services with the goal of achieving the best possible outcomes for youth. Regularly assessing the team and program’s performance is the only way to know how current practices are impacting the quality of services and outcomes produced. By incorporating CQI, JDTC professionals will discuss and learn to:

A Guide to the Guidelines Series: Practical Tips for Juvenile Drug Treatment Courts to Implement

May is National Drug Court Month! The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) celebrates the success of adult drug courts, juvenile drug treatment courts, family dependency treatment courts, tribal healing to wellness courts, DWI courts, and veterans’ treatment courts across the U.S. 

Juvenile drug treatment courts (JDTCs) in particular serve a critical role in helping youth address, and ultimately overcome, concurrent substance use and delinquent behaviors. Comprehensive interventions for juvenile substance use are important because early substance use is a risk factor for justice system involvement and lifelong addiction issues. The NCJFCJ is proud to be the resource for training and technical assistance for JDTCs nationwide, providing support to these vital programs as they undertake the work to help youth transform their lives.
The first juvenile drug treatment courts started in 1995, following the implementation of the adult drug court model. In 2003, a joint project of the National Drug Court Institute (NDCI), the NCJFCJ, and practitioners in the juvenile drug treatment court field developed the Strategies in Practice, which served as suggested practice for JDTCs to implement and operate a JDTC as well as to supply a structure for evaluation and research. The recommendations developed in the Strategies in Practice, based largely on practitioner perspective and practice, served as an important historical perspective in the development of the new Juvenile Drug Treatment Court Guidelines (Guidelines) released this year. The Guidelines are based in research and evidence-based practices, and if followed, increase the probability that JDTCs will be able to implement successfully recommended practices for youth and their families. 
The NCJFCJ provides training to professionals working in the juvenile drug treatment court field focusing on strengthening the ability to offer quality, evidence-based adolescent services within a team framework: 
  • Introduce concepts and awareness of a topic or issue
  • Improve practice on a national, regional, and local level
  • Improve individual effectiveness and build on a participant’s existing knowledge and encourage/implement change
  • Change team practice and move the team from current practice to recommended practice
  • Assist  the self-guided learner with moving from the introduction of concepts through to a change in practice at his or her own pace
Technical Assistance
  • Build capacity
  • Assess needs
  • Initiate strategic planning
  • Implement appropriate improvements
  • Evaluate program performance and help sustain programs

Linking Courts to the Evidence-Based Treatment Community

  • The Adolescent-Based Treatment Database (Database), compiled by the NCJFCJ, supplies information on validated treatment interventions and assessment instruments
  • A one-stop-shop for JDTCs researching adolescent-focused treatment and assessment instruments
  • The Database serves as a valuable tool by detailing intervention basics, providing special considerations regarding specific treatment interventions, and providing engagement strategies for providers, allied agencies, youth, and families
  • The Database provides a Comparison Matrix to help readers quickly identify brief, individual, group, and family interventions that may work in their jurisdiction
National Drug Court Month has been celebrated for more than 20 years throughout treatment court communities across the country. National Drug Court Month is organized by the National Association of Drug Court Professionals (NADCP) each year.
JDTC professionals and teams are encouraged to download the National Drug Court Month kit, which includes instructions and samples for courts to contact their state’s Senators and Representatives and invite them to attend graduation ceremonies. Additionally, treatment court communities can spread the word through NADCP’s media kit to share the importance of future funding for treatment courts across the nation. 
For more information about National Drug Court Month, please click on the following links: 
Throughout the month of May the NCJFCJ will publish a series of blogs with advice and tips on the new Guidelines, as well as other resources to recognize National Drug Court Month.
For more information on NCJFCJ's Juvenile Drug Treatment Court work, visit the Information Center here.

Juvenile Drug Treatment Court Guidelines Webinar Series

The Juvenile Drug Treatment Court (JDTC) Guidelines have been released! The Guidelines are based on current research and will serve as the framework for JDTCs now and in the future. The Guidelines, which are research-based, represent the next evolution of JDTC courts and will be a vital tool. 

Join us for the three-part series to explore the Guidelines in these interactive online webinars as we discuss and learn about: 

  • Current state of juvenile drug court research
  • How the Guidelines build off of the 16 Strategies in Practice
  • How teams can begin to move their practice