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[photo, One Plaza Center, 120 West Fayette St., Baltimore, Maryland] The Department of Juvenile Services provides individualized care and treatment, consistent with the public safety, to youth under the age of eighteen who violate the criminal law, or are likely to violate the law, or whose behavior is such that they may endanger themselves or others. Whenever feasible, the Department serves troubled youth in their homes or residences within the community. The Department is responsible for probation, that is, the supervision of youngsters who are adjudicated delinquent but not institutionalized; and aftercare, the supervision and counseling of minors for a prescribed period of time upon their release from an institution. The Department also administers community-based residential programs, and nonresidential and residential services provided by private vendors.

One Plaza Center, 120 West Fayette St., Baltimore, Maryland, April 2001. Photo by Diane F. Evartt.

Since 1969, through field offices in each county and Baltimore City, intake officers from the Department of Juvenile Services receive and process complaints filed against juveniles. Most complaints come from the police after a juvenile has been arrested, but parents, teachers, social workers, or any citizen may file a complaint. The intake officer makes a preliminary inquiry as to whether court proceedings are in the child's best interest and then may dismiss the complaint, file a petition for court action, or resolve the complaint out of court through informal supervision or diversion to community-based services. Many complaints are resolved without court action. When a petition for court action is filed, the intake officer recommends whether detention is necessary prior to adjudication, and a detention hearing is held in juvenile court. Next, an adjudicatory hearing determines whether the child is delinquent or in need of supervision. Then a disposition hearing decides on adequate treatment for the child, either at home, under community supervision, in an out-of-home residence, or for those categorized as dangerous to themselves and others, through commitment to a secure institution. The Department is responsible for providing care to youth adjudicated delinquent or in need of supervision (CINS) and developing programs for the "predelinquent" child, one whose behavior is likely to lead to contact with law enforcement agencies (Chapter 480, Acts of 1971). For children in need of assistance (CINA), local departments of social services are responsible for their care (Chapter 343, Acts of 1991).

In the past twenty-five years, the State has altered the way it cares for troubled youth. Maryland no longer relies solely on custodial care in institutions to treat juveniles who have violated the law. The most recent reform initiative of the Department is best characterized by the 1988 closing of the Montrose School, the 1991 privatization of the Charles H. Hickey, Jr., School, and expansion of community-based alternatives to institutionalization. Nonetheless, juveniles who pose a risk to public safety are confined in detention centers. For adjudicated delinquents who cannot be served in a less restrictive setting, the Charles H. Hickey, Jr., School provides specialized education and treatment. For juveniles awaiting trial or court disposition, the Department's four detention centers provide short-term residential care. The Department also licenses private and publicly operated residential programs serving troubled youth.


One Center Plaza
120 West Fayette St., Baltimore, MD 21201

Appointed by the Governor with Senate advice and consent, the Secretary of Juvenile Services heads the Department of Juvenile Services. The Department provides services to approximately 30,000 youths annually who are referred to the care of the Department, usually by the police or the courts.

The Secretary of Juvenile Services serves on the Governor's Executive Council; the Subcabinet for Children, Youth, and Families; and the Cabinet Council on Criminal and Juvenile Justice. The Secretary also is a member of the Advisory Board on After-School Opportunity Programs; the Cease Fire Council; the State Child Fatality Review Team; the Correctional Training Commission; the Judges, Masters and Juvenile Justice Committee; the State Advisory Board for Juvenile Services; the Coordinating Council for Juvenile Services Educational Programs; the Interdepartmental Advisory Committee for Minority Affairs; the Maryland Partnership for Children, Youth, and Families; the Maryland School-Based Health Center Policy Advisory Council; the Governor's Commission on Service and Volunteerism; the State's Attorneys Liaison Committee; and the State Board of Victim Services.

Within the Office of the Secretary are the principal counsel and the Chief of Staff.

Under the Secretary, the Department is organized by two main functions: Administration, and Operations. The Office of the Secretary is assisted by the State Advisory Board for Juvenile Services; the Female Population Task Force; the Judges, Masters, and Juvenile Justice Committee; and the State's Attorneys Liaison Committee.


In March 2004, Administration was created. Headed by a Deputy Secretary, Administration is responsible for Budget and Finance; Departmental Support; and Professional Responsibility and Accountability. Also under Administration are offices for Community Affairs; Fair Practice and Equal Employment Opportunity; Legislation; and Public Information and Communications.


Budget and Finance began as Special Programs and reorganized as Specialized Operations in 1996. Functions of Specialized Operations were assigned to Budget and Finance in January 1997. In 2002, it was renamed Fiscal Planning and Management, and in March 2004, became Budget and Finance. This office oversees Accounting; Budget; Grant Finance; and Youth Assistance.


Departmental Support started as the Budget and Management Division in 1987. Renamed the Administrative Services Division in 1990, it merged with the Program Services Division in 1992 to form the Administrative and Program Services Division. In 1996, program services were assigned to the Program Services Division and the office of Administration was created to manage administrative functions. In 2000, Departmental Support assumed functions of Administration. In March 2004, it moved under Administration.

Under Departmental Support are Facility Management; Human Resources; Information Technology; Intergovernmental Collaborations; Policy; Procurement; Program Development; and Research and Planning.

Information Technology formed as Information Technology and became Information Technology and Telecommunications in 2000. As Information Technology, it was placed under Administration in March 2004.

Information Technology operates and maintains the Department's client database (ISYS). This office provides technical assistance on all computer-related matters, and supports, procures, and maintains the Department's personal computers and associated applications. For the year 2000, Information Technology set up a statewide computer network to enhance communication capabilities and support a new work flow system.

In March 2004, Intergovernmental Collaborations formed under Equal Justice and Policy as Intergovernmental Relations. For the special needs of children, Intergovernmental Collaborations seeks funding. This responsibility started in 1992, when the Department began participating in federal funding initiatives. Under the federal Social Security Act (Title IV-E), the State receives federal funds to maintain eligible children in foster care (P.L. 96-272). In July 2005, Intergovernmental Collaborations moved under Departmental Support.

Policy began as Professional Standards, created under the Office of Professional Responsibility and Accountability in July 2000. In March 2004, it combined with the program development component from Research and Program Development to form Policy and Program Development under Equal Justice and Policy. In July 2005, it transferred to Departmental Support as Policy.

Program Development started as Program and Contract Development in October 1992, became Grants and Program Development in 1998, and Research and Program Development in 2003. The program development component combined with Professional Standards to form Policy and Program Development under Equal Justice and Policy in March 2004. In July 2005, Policy and Program Development split and moved to Departmental Support as separate units.

Program Development defines programs and contract specifications for services provided by the private sector. These services include management of residential facilities and community detention; and counseling, drug treatment, mentoring, and community service programs.

In March 2004, the research function from Research and Program Development became Research and Planning under Equal Justice and Policy. In July 2005, it moved under Departmental Support.


In July 2000, the Office of Professional Responsibility was created to ensure internal accountability and professionalism throughout the Department and its institutions. In March 2004, the Office moved under the Chief of Staff, and in December 2004, under Administration.

Under the Office are Audit and Compliance; Child Advocacy; Investigations; and Risk Management.


One Center Plaza, 120 West Fayette St., Baltimore, MD 21201

Operations organized as Restorative Justice Operations in 2000, reorganized in January 2002 as Admissions and Community Justice, and reverted to its original name in January 2003. It restructured as Programs in March 2004, and as Operations in March 2005.

Under Operations are the Baltimore City Juvenile Justice Center, Behavioral Health Services, Community Justice Programs, Residential Services, and Western Regional Operations.


Under Admissions, Health Services formed in July 2000 as Health Care Services. In March 2004, it was renamed Health Services under Programs. In December 2004, Health Services further reorganized into two componenents: Behavioral Health Services, and Somatic Health Services. In March 2005, Behavioral Health Services was placed directly under the Deputy Secretary for Operations, while Medical Services transferred to Residential Services.

Behavioral Health Services works through a system of care which encompasses case management, girls and gender issues, substance abuse, and sex abuse and victimization. Behavioral Health Services oversees Mental Health Services and Substance Abuse Services.

Substance Abuse Services was initiated by 1992 and reorganized as a separate unit under Health Services in March 2004. In December 2004, it was placed under Behavioral Health Services.

Substance Abuse Services provides preventive education and screens all juveniles in a detention or committed facility. Treatment programs are provided for those youths diagnosed as in need of services. Substance Abuse Services works with the eleven Juvenile Drug Courts in Maryland.


Community Justice Programs was established in 1989 as the Program Support Services Division. Renamed the Program Services Division in 1990, it merged in 1992 with the Administrative Services Division to form the Administrative and Program Services Division. In 1996, administrative services were assigned to Administration (under the Deputy Secretary), and the Division resumed its former name as the Program Services Division. In 2000, it reorganized as Admissions under Restorative Justice Operations. In January 2002, the division transferred to Admissions and Community Justice. In March 2004, it restructured as Program Services under Programs. In March 2005, it reformed as Community Justice Programs under Operations.

Under Community Justice Programs are the local Area Offices, Community Detention and Electronic Monitoring, and Placement Services. Community Justice Programs also oversees the Interstate Compact on Juveniles.

To administer intake, probation, and aftercare for delinquent youth, the State is divided into five areas with local field offices serving each county and Baltimore City. Youths who break the law or exhibit uncontrollable behavior enter the juvenile justice system through these local offices. Effective July 2006, Area 3 (Western Maryland) transferred to Western Regional Operations.

Young people may be referred to a local office of juvenile justice by law enforcement agencies, other government agencies, parents, or concerned citizens. Following referral, an intake officer assesses the youth and determines the most appropriate course of action. The intake officer may recommend formal court proceedings; place the minor on voluntary informal supervision for up to 90 days; dismiss the youth with a warning; or disapprove a case for insufficient evidence.

Through intake services, the local area office decides for each minor whether court proceedings are appropriate. The local area office also recommends to the court whether adjudicated delinquents should be placed on probation, in a day program, or committed to a residential facility. During probation and throughout the youth's stay at a residential facility, the local area office maintains contact with a juvenile's case manager. Minors are monitored in a similar fashion after their release.

721 Woodburne Ave., Baltimore, MD 21212

For youth awaiting court trial or review, Community Detention and Electronic Monitoring is an alternative to incarceration. Juveniles may remain at home in their community under intensive supervision by daily face-to-face or telephone contact and through surveillance by electronic monitoring.

Placement Services establishes policy and standards for the placement of juveniles in residential and nonresidential programs. At area offices of juvenile justice throughout Maryland, the unit's resource coordinators meet with case managers to assess a child's needs for education, socialization, and health services. They determine which Department program best meets these needs while protecting public safety. The unit monitors the case until the minor is accepted into a program, and placement and other services are funded.


One Center Plaza, 120 West Fayette St., Baltimore, MD 21201

In 1987, Residential Services started as the Institution and Detention Services Division. It became the Facilities and Residential Services Division in 1989 and reorganized as the Residential Services Division in 1992. In March 2004, it restructured under Programs as Residential Services. Programs became Operations in March 2005.

Residential Services oversees State residences for youth committed or detained by the court. Serving committed juveniles are two community-based facilities in Baltimore City and four youth centers in Western Maryland. Seven detention centers hold minors awaiting trial or disposition.

Within its facilities, Residential Services provides screening, counseling, education, vocational skills training, health services, and recreational activities. Residential Services also is responsible statewide for transporting youth between court and State facilities.

Residential Services oversees Detention and Residential Operations, and is responsible for Education Services, and Medical Services.

In March 2005, Detention and Residential Operations organized under Residential Services to oversee Facility Operations and Transportation Services. It is responsible for three categories of facilities run by the Department: Committed; Contractual; and Detention.

For youth committed by the courts, the Department runs six committed residential facilities. They are the Maryland Youth Residence Center, and the William Donald Schaefer House in Baltimore City, and four Youth Centers in Western Maryland. If funding permits, the Victor Cullen Center, formerly a contractually operated residential center, may eventually reopen as a regional center.


For youth placed in detention and residential facilities of the Department, Education Services administers and supervises education programs. The unit offers instruction in English, math, science, social studies, physical education, music and art, remedial reading and math; and prepares students for the General Education Development (G.E.D.) test.

Education Services receives funding from and is subject to rules and regulations of the State Department of Education. To receive federal funds, it provides special education that meets the needs of disadvantaged youth. Most facilities also offer vocational training.

Beginning in 2004, the State Department of Education began to assume responsibility for the education of juveniles residing in institutions under the jurisdiction of the Department of Juvenile Services. By July 1, 2012, all educational services offered by the residential facilities of the Department of Juvenile Services will be administered by the Juvenile Services Education Program of the State Department of Education. As of July 2006, that program was responsible for education at the Charles H. Hickey, Jr., School; Baltimore City Juvenile Justice Center; and the Lower Eastern Shore Children's Center.


Medical Services began as Health Services within the Residential Services Division and transferred to Health Care Services under its present name in 2000. Medical Services coordinates and oversees somatic health and nutrition for youth admitted to the Department's care and custody. Medical services include an assessment of immediate medical needs by a nurse, a physical examination and health history, immunizations, laboratory tests, dietary services, dental care, sick care, and emergency treatment.

Many youth entering Department facilities have behaved irresponsibly and face complex health problems, such as chronic untreated medical conditions, sexually transmitted diseases, illnesses related to drug or alcohol abuse, tuberculosis, teenage pregnancy, or a poor self-image. Medical Services teaches youth to prevent disease and take responsibility for their health.

Medical Services also provides clinical, managerial and administrative guidance to health service personnel in Department facilities and programs. The nurse manager at Medical Services advises nurses at juvenile facilities on treatment. The nurse manager also tracks youth from one juvenile facility to another, monitoring their health care. For physicians who treat youth in the Department's care, and for pharmacy and medical laboratory services provided to these youth, Medical Services writes and manages contracts. It also oversees intergovernmental agreements for health care to youth in Department facilities. In addition, Medical Services monitors expenditures for services and organizes continuing education seminars for clinicians.

Medical Services oversees Mental Health Services and Somatic Health Services.


Secure Detention Centers hold minors awaiting trial or placement in a residential program. These youth are either alleged or adjudicated delinquents. Some are quite young. They require detention (i.e. locked confinement), because they pose a danger to themselves or others, need close supervision, or might leave the jurisdiction of the court.

Detention and Residential Operations oversees six detention centers: J. DeWeese Carter Center; Cheltenham Youth Facility; Lower Eastern Shore Children's Center; Alfred D. Noyes Children's Center; Thomas J. S. Waxter Children's Center; and Western Maryland Children's Center.

Under contract with the Department, private firms formerly operated three residential centers: Victor Cullen Center; Charles H. Hickey, Jr., School; and Thomas O'Farrell Youth Center. In April 2002, the Victor Cullen Center closed. Scheduled to reopen in December 2004, it will be run by the Department, not a private firm. Effective April 1, 2004, the Charles H. Hickey, Jr., School returned to operation by the Department. Since April 2004, only the Thomas O'Farrell Youth Center continues to be run by a private contractor.


326 Queen City Drive, Cumberland, MD 21502

In July 2006, Western Regional Operations was established as a pilot program in the Department's plan to convert to integrated regional delivery of services. Western Regional Operations oversees the Area Offices located in western Maryland, which provide community-based services, such as intake probation and aftercare. Western Regional Operations also is responsible for seven facilities: Alfred D. Noyes Children's Center; Backbone Mountain Youth Center; Green Ridge Regional Youth Center; Meadow Mountain Youth Center; Savage Mountain Youth Center; Thomas J. S. Waxter Children's Center; and Western Maryland Children's Center.

Western Regional Operations encompasses a service area which includes seven counties: Allegany, Carroll, Frederick, Garrett, Howard, Montgomery, and Washington.

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