Redeploy Illinois program diverts thousands of youth from prison
analysis of initiative shows 54 percent reduction in juvenile
incarceration, savings of $60 million
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[April 28, 2014]
The state of Illinois has diverted thousands of youth from prison
and onto the right path, while saving $60 million in incarceration
costs, according to the 2012-2013 Redeploy Illinois report recently
released by the Illinois Department of Human Services.
"Redeploy Illinois' success is proof that community-based services
for juvenile offenders are not only the best tools we have to truly
help rehabilitate delinquent youth, but they are also more
cost-effective," said IDHS Secretary Michelle R.B. Saddler. "This
program gives youth a second chance at becoming a contributing and
law-abiding citizen of their respective communities. Beyond saving
dollars, the program mends lives."
In 2013, the average per capita
cost to house a youth at the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice
was $111,000, while the average annual cost to serve a youth in the
Redeploy Illinois program was less than $7,000. Department data
reflect 238 fewer youth were committed from counties in the Redeploy
program in 2012. Although 2013 department data are not yet
available, this trend is expected to continue, as Redeploy counties
served 352 youth in 2013.
Gov. Pat Quinn's fiscal 2015 budget proposal would preserve
Redeploy Illinois, allowing the successful program to continue to
serve at-risk youth in nearly 50 counties across the state. Failure
to maintain the current income tax rate would significantly increase
the population and expenditures of the Illinois Department of
Redeploy Illinois was established in 2005 to provide financial
support to counties in their efforts to provide community services
for delinquent youth as an alternative to incarceration. Since that
time, the program has cut in half the number of juveniles committed
to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice, according to the
program's most recent annual report.
In the first eight years of the program, participating counties
sent 1,036 juveniles to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice.
This is a steep decline from the projected 2,268 youth who were
likely to have been sent, based on the previous three-year
commitment trend, and it represents a 54 percent reduction in IDJJ
commitments over the life of the program. Through 2012, the Redeploy
program diverted 1,232 youth, saving the state a conservative $60
million in unnecessary incarceration costs.
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Redeploy Illinois supports a wide array of services to help
delinquent youth, including counseling, substance abuse and
mental health treatment, life skills education, and parent and
family support services.
The program began in 2005 in four sites serving 15 counties.
Today it provides services in 12 sites and 43 counties. The newest
Redeploy program sites are LaSalle, Kankakee, Winnebago and Union
County. Other Redeploy sites have also recently been approved to
expand throughout their area, with St. Clair adding Monroe,
Randolph, Perry and Washington counties; LaSalle adding Bureau and
Grundy counties; and Kankakee adding Iroquois County.
The program has been successful in mobilizing communities to
direct resources to youth offenders who otherwise would have been
incarcerated. Counties receiving Redeploy Illinois funds commit to
reducing their number of commitments by 25 percent in exchange for
2012-2013 Redeploy Illinois Annual Report can be viewed at the
Illinois Department of Human
file received from the
Illinois Office of Communication and Information]