Influencing positive systemic change in youth's legal issues in the juvenile justice, education and child welfare systems within Indiana.
Mental Heath Screening, Assessment and Treatment Project
445 N. Pennsylvania Street, Suite 520 Indianapolis, Indiana 46204
Phone: (317) 916-0786 Fax: (317) 916-5369
The Indiana Juvenile Mental Health Screening, Assessment and Treatment Pilot Project is a collaborative effort to institute routine screening, assessment and treatment for youth entering detention centers in Indiana. The concept for the pilot program was a result of the Indiana State Bar Association's (ISBA) Children, Mental Health and the Law Summit, held on August 27, 2004. The Summit resulted in a published report and recommendations that earned national recognition for its groundbreaking efforts. The Indiana Criminal Justice Institute (ICJI) provided the initial start-up funds for the Pilot Project in 2006.
The Pilot Project was modeled on a highly successful screening project in Pennsylvania-the Juvenile Detention Centers' Association of Pennsylvania Mental Health Grant. The Pennsylvania Project was implemented in phases, beginning with the development of protocol for screening, resource identification and training; over a seven- year period, 21 of 23 detention centers began routinely screening youth for mental health problems upon admission. As in the Pennsylvania effort, the Pilot Project seeks to grow into a state-wide initiative over a 5 to 7 year period.
Important goals of the Indiana Juvenile Mental Health Screening, Assessment and Treatment Pilot Project are to show both the social and economic benefits of adequately and systematically addressing mental health needs at an early stage in the juvenile justice system by development of a model that can be replicated statewide. Pertinent data from the Pilot Site Counties will be collected to both facilitate and report the achievement of this goal.