Iowa was recently awarded a three-year, $750,000 federal grant from the Office of Management and Budget, and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) will aid state officials in implementing more effective juvenile justice programming.
The Iowa Department of Human Right’s Division of Criminal and Juvenile Justice Planning (CJJP) intends to provide three of the state’s eight judicial districts with resources to evaluate juvenile programs and improve services for youth offenders.
“The new project will bolster current work, allowing both CJJP and the field to be better informed as to which services are likely to achieve outcomes related to reduced recidivism, increased public safety and lower costs,” Paul Stageberg, CJJP administrator, told the Des Moines Register.
New projects will be centralized in northwestern and northeastern Iowa, and target cities include Cedar Rapids, Sioux City and Waterloo. Officials will use new tools to assess current juvenile programs in comparison to other evidence-based detention alternatives.
“We want to increase public safety, reduce recidivism and lower the cost,” Gov. Terry Branstad told the Des Moines Register. “We won’t be just implementing new tools, we will be measuring the effectiveness of the tools in this project.”