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TitlePA DMC Assessment - Pennsylvania Council of Chief Juvenile
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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

The authors of this study would like to acknowledge the efforts of the various persons and agencies

involved with the work of this project. Thanks to the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and

Delinquency (PCCD) and the Disproportionate Minority Contact (DMC) subcommittee for the funding of

this research study. Specifically, thanks to Daniel Elby, Chair of the DMC Subcommittee, and Melissa

Shet



We would also like to recognize the other members of the DMC research team, who provided logistical

and technical support throughout the project: Linda Bender, Director of Information and Technology,

Center for Juvenile Justice Training and Research (CJJT&R); Rebecca Anderson, Information

Technology Generalist, CJJT&R; Michael Hamel, Psychology Department Graduate Assistant,

Shippensburg University; and Rachel Hamel, Psychology Department Graduate Assistant, Shippensburg

University, and George Higgins, Ph.D., Consultant, University of Louisville.



Finally, we would like to acknowledge Stephen Bishop, Deputy Director of CJJT&R, who secured the

funding for this project, served as Project Director, and authored the Executive Summary.





This research project and the preparation of this report was supported by PCCD Subgrant 2010/2011/2012-J-01-

22105, awarded by the PCCD to the Center for Juvenile Justice Training and Research at Shippensburg University.

The awarded funds originate with the Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice. Points of view or

opinions contained within this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent any official

position, policy, or view of CJJT&R, JCJC), PCCD, or the U.S. Department of

Justice.



Copyright 2012 by the Center for Juvenile Justice Training and Research



Use of the content of this report as is for educational purposes is permitted as often and for as many people as

desired. We ask that you identify the material as being the property of the Center for Juvenile Justice Training and

Research. Use of this report for other purposes in print, electronic, or any other medium, is prohibited.



Suggested Citation: Griffith, J., Jirard, S., Ricketts, M. (2012). Pennsylvania Juvenile Justice Disproportionate

Commission/Center for Juvenile Justice Training and Research.

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Table 33 shows the Ordinary Least Squares results for the 2008 RRI for referrals. The results

indicate for every one unit increase in residential mobility, there is a 0.04 increase in the RRI referral

score. For every one unit change in living arrangements reduces the RRI referral score by -0.22. The

Betas indicate that the greatest effect is coming from living arrangements. The tolerance levels do not

show that multicollinearity is a problem in these data. Thus we can conclude that residential mobility and

living arrangements have statistically significant impact on juvenile referrals.

Table 33. Regression Analysis RRI Referral 2008



Measure B Stand Error Beta Tolerance

1. % Residential Mobility 0.04* 0.02 0.37 0.83

2. School -0.20 0.61 -0.06 0.68

3. Family 0.16 0.12 0.30 0.43

4. Living Arrangements -0.22* 0.11 -0.41 0.54

5. Inequality Index 0.02 0.01 0.30 0.89

F 2.03

R-Square 0.23

*p>0.05, **p>0.01



Table 34 shows the Ordinary Least Squares results for the 2008 RRI Diversion. The results show

that as living arrangements increase, there is a 0.14 increase in the RRI diversion 2008. The results

indicate that the greatest effect is coming from living arrangements. The tolerance levels show that

multicollinearity is not a problem in these data. Thus we can conclude that the living arrangements of

juveniles have the greatest impact on diversion decisions.

Table 34. Regression Analysis RRI Diversion 2008



Measure B Stand Error Beta Tolerance

1. % Residential Mobility 0.02 0.01 0.34 0.78

2. School -0.14 0.36 -0.08 0.54

3. Family -0.06 0.07 -0.24 0.30

4. Living Arrangements 0.14* 0.06 0.56 0.44

5. Inequality Index 0.00 0.01 0.02 0.83

F 1.99

R-Square 0.27

*p>0.05, **p>0.01

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CHAPTER 5

I. Qualitative Analysis

1. Focus Groups

A. Background for Qualitative Study

Studies examining remedies for disproportionate minority contact suggest conducting interviews

of professionals, community members, and juveniles within the relevant community to provide context to

the quantitative analysis and connect real-life experiences to the DMC numbers (Aubel, 1994; Morgan,

1998; Kakar 2006). The Disproportionate Minority Contact Technical Assistance Manual specifically

encourages a multi-layered approach to obtaining data about the causes of DMC and Focus Groups were

also used successfully by the Public Health Management Corporation in its Assessment of the Needs of

Latino Youth Involved in the Juvenile Justice System complied in 2009 for the Pennsylvania Commission

on Crime and Delinquency‟s Disproportionate Minority Contact Subcommittee. In this study, Focus

Groups were convened to hear from juvenile justice professionals their perceptions of both the causes of,

and cure for, DMC in Pennsylvania. Research indicates, though, that it is virtually impossible to separate

America‟s ugly history of racism from the administration of criminal justice in general and juvenile

justice in particular.

Qualitative interviews are a necessary component of any DMC study to determine the existence

of the "chicken or egg" effect in juvenile justice: are justice professionals influenced more by society's

inherent race bias and belief that juveniles of color are more likely to commit crimes that warrant severe

punishment? Or do juveniles of color commit more crimes that warrant severe punishment because of the

systemic bias in society that not only disrupts their family's ability to handle a kid in need, but also limits

the juvenile's social, economic, and education opportunities which makes them susceptible to

delinquency? In the context of race relations and justice, according to author Michelle Alexander who

studies the "mass incarceration" of people of color says that dark people, particularly African Americans,

were an “undercaste -a lower caste of individuals . . . permanently barred by law and custom from

mainstream society” (2010, p. 13), a characterization that still applies today (“And justice for some,”

2007).

Historically, the disparate treatment of black delinquents was attributed, much as it is today, to a

lack of resources within the black community to effectively control and rehabilitate juveniles. In the

cradle of juvenile justice, Chicago‟s Cook County in the 1830s, most institutions for juvenile

rehabilitation were reserved exclusively for whites. Studies conducted in the 1920s found that because

the black delinquent had no suitable community or family resources, Illinois authorities had no alternative

than to commit colored boys to the “state run St. Charles School for boys sooner than it would have in the

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Question 7: Are there programs or services within the juvenile justice system within your counties that

specifically address minority overrepresentation?































Categories
AM group PM group Total

Police training 0 2 2

Continuum of services/programs 2 1 3

Police contact/initial contact 0 1 1

Fairness of decision making 0 2 2

Availability of diversion programs 0 1 1

School truancy 1 1 2

Minority mentors 1 2 3

“Buy in” from family 0 1 1

Parental support 0 1 1

Addressing the disconnect between actions and

consequences

1 1 2

Totals 5 13 18

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Question 8: Does racial diversity of the Juvenile Justice work force have an effect on Pennsylvania‟s

DMC rates?















Categories
AM group PM group Total

P.O.‟s character 2 0 2

Work force in itself not the issue 2 1 3

Family perception of treatment by minority P.O. 1 1 2

Purpose of minority representation in the work force 3 2 5

Gender diversity in the workforce 1 1 2

P.O. preference toward population 4 0 4

Demand for minorities in better paying fields 3 2 5

Language barrier 2 2 4

Work force diversity important, but not crucial 0 2 2

Work force must reflect community it serves 0 1 1

Race of P.O. doesn‟t matter 0 2 2

Not much diversity of work force/officials 0 2 2

Treatment of client by staff, more important than race 0 2 2

Totals 18 18 36

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