Prevention Working Group

Why is there a need for a Prevention Working Group?

The prevention working group is focused on preventing entry and re-entry to the juvenile justice system. Preventing involvement in the juvenile justice system has the two-fold benefit of better meeting the needs of youth and family before issues escalate to require system involvement while improving the capacity of the system to better serve those youth who do become system involved.

The Goal

The goal of our working group is to prevent youth from entering and re-entering the justice system. To do so, we will act to increase earlier recognition of at-risk youth and families, knowledge of how to best serve youth and their families, and access to needed supports and services.

What is the focus of the Prevention Working Group?

The Prevention Working Group has used a public health approach to review existing data on the various issues that lead youth and families to come into contact with the juvenile justice system. The group has also taken into account that Douglas County is rich in existing programs and resources focused on prevention – the primary need is coordination of and access to these services. Based on these conversations, the group has identified three focus areas in which it will work to strengthen the network of supports and services that prevent system involvement:

Our Focus

  1. Addressing the barriers that prevent youth and families from seeking and accessing needed supports and services
  2. Increasing community and provider knowledge and capacity to identify and serve at-risk youth earlier in their lives with evidence informed programs
  3. Increasing funding for preventative services for youth who are at-risk of justice system involvement
Over the coming months, the Prevention Working Group will develop specific action plans and begin implementing activities to make progress in these areas.


Who are the participants in the Prevention Working Group?

Alyssa Smith

Brandy Gustoff

David Brown

Greg Hepburn

Melissa Beagley

Michaela Jackson

* Working group co-chair

Jennifer Potterf

Julia Evers

Kyle Kinney

Kerry Kernen

Andrea Wright

James Hubbard

Lauren Walag

Juan Carlos Palacios

*Megan Miller

Melissa Schaefer

*Ronda Newman

Terra Goodwin