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Assessment Process

The clinical unit is managed by licensed, master’s level, mental health professionals, who oversee prevention and diversion services, free of charge, for youth referred to the Juvenile Services Department (JSD).   

  1. Each youth is screened and assessed in an environment that adheres to all of the confidentiality guidelines set forth by Florida law. 

  2. The screening and assessment tools are designed to identify the following: Detention Status, Risk to re-offend, Substance Abuse and Mental Health, and other personal needs/issues.

  3. Once the screening and assessment tools are completed, appropriate referrals are made to programs that are designed to meet the youth’s individual needs. 

  4. Each youth receives appropriate time and care to ensure that he/she and the family receive the most comprehensive service available. 

  5. One of many of the services delivered is the provision of appropriate referrals to diversionary programs.  Diversion eligible youth may be referred to one of the following diversionary programs: Civil Citation, Juvenile Delinquency Alternative Program (J-DAP), Juvenile Alternative Services Sanctions (JASS), and Young Offender’s Process (YOP), see Diversion Services for details on these programs. 

  6. A seamless process exists, to funnel any referrals to the State Attorney’s Officer for approval and return to the Juvenile Services Department Diversion component.

Services provided by the mental health professional staff include:

  • Evaluating children in crisis and initiating Baker Act (Crisis Intervention) procedures 
  • Providing clinical assistance to JSD staff working with children and their families 
  • Clinical review of Treatment Alternative for Safer Communities (TASC) psychosocial assessments, which are completed on children who are classified as being moderate or high risk of having mental health and substance abuse issues.  
  • Training on evidence-based tools and techniques used to assess the client population 
  • Training on mental health and substance abuse issues 
  • Supervision of prevention and diversion services

Young Offender's Process

Young Offenders Process (YOP) is a diversion program for arrested children under 12 years of age. Once the child is identified as a potential candidate for this program an age and gender appropriate psychosocial assessment is completed on the child.

Based on the client and family interviews, the arrest charge, and school records, sanctions and services are put into place for the youth and family, often to include counseling and community service for the youth. The family will receive case-management services for approximately 3-6 months. This program which includes all arrested youth in this age group is currently being expanded to include the at risk population.

Back to Top Page Last Edited: Mon May 13, 2013 1:11:00 PM

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