The Department of Human Services (DHS), through its Division of Juvenile Justice Services (DJJS), is responsible for operating the county juvenile detention center, developing the county’s budget for delinquency services, contracting with private providers for treatment services and receiving and disbursing funds used for delinquency services. DJJS incorporates a need for public safety and a need to provide juveniles an opportunity for positive change. It works collaboratively with its sister divisions, the Children and Youth Division (CYD) and the Community-Based Prevention Services (CBPS) to help prevent abuse, neglect and delinquency.
The Division of Juvenile Justice Services consists of two main operating units – the Youth Study Center (YSC) and Court & Community Services. The Youth Study Center, Philadelphia’s secure detention center, is designed to provide temporary care, custody, and control for alleged and adjudicated delinquents, age 13 and over, who are awaiting court action. Consistent with the purpose of secure detention, the YSC provides protection to the community, a safe and secure setting for youth and staff, and ensures residents are available for scheduled court hearings.
The Court & Community Services Unit of DJJS is responsible for developing, contracting, and monitoring service delivery to delinquent youth. This is accomplished through collaboration with the Family Court, private service providers and other key juvenile justice stakeholders to identify service needs and gaps in services. This coordinated effort has resulted in a continuum of services that recognizes that juvenile delinquency is the result of a complex set of risk factors such as personal life, family circumstances, and the community environment. Services are available to delinquent youth in residential programs such as Community-Based Detention, Foster Care, Group Homes, Institutions and In-Home programs such as Home-Based Detention, Aftercare and Day Treatment.