Citations Affected: IC 5-2-6-24.
Synopsis: Advisory panel. Creates the disproportionality advisory
panel to work with criminal justice agencies to develop targeted and
collaborative efforts to reduce racial disparity in the provision of
services to youth of color. Requires the criminal justice institute to
provide staff and support for the advisory panel.
Effective: July 1, 2009.
January 14, 2009, read first time and referred to Committee on Rules and Legislative
A BILL FOR AN ACT to amend the Indiana Code concerning state
offices and administration.
appropriations made to the institute.
(j) The affirmative votes of a majority of the voting members appointed to the panel are required for the panel to take action on any measure, including reports.
(k) The panel has the following duties:
(1) Work with the institute and other criminal justice agencies to develop targeted and collaborative efforts to reduce racial disparity in the provision of services to youth of color.
(2) Review the applications of current direct file and discretionary transfer and waiver provisions for disparate racial impact, including:
(A) an evaluation of whether to reduce or eliminate adult jurisdiction for certain offences;
(B) consideration of raising the age for potential adult criminal responsibility; and
(C) an evaluation of the policy under which a youth, once waived, is thereafter considered an adult even if the adult charges are dismissed or end in an acquittal.
(3) Undertake a review to:
(A) understand the policies and practices that underlie drug enforcement, prosecution, and sentencing; and
(B) determine whether those policies and practices have a disparate impact on youth of color.
(4) Review practices that result in high rates of waiver of counsel and modify those practices to encourage youth of color and families of youth of color to retain counsel while involved in the juvenile justice system.
(5) Conduct a comprehensive review of the laws governing juveniles to:
(A) recommend and evaluate legislative policies to support system change at the state and local levels;
(B) integrate accountability clauses into revisions made to the juvenile justice code; and
(C) identify and address legislative factors contributing to disparities, disproportionality, and negative outcomes for youth of color in the juvenile justice system.
(l) The panel shall develop technical assistance activities to support new strategies to:
(1) reduce disproportionality, including establishing pilot programs to create objective screening and assessment tools;
(2) use community restitution and restorative justice programs; and
(3) use alternatives to drug prosecution and improve traditional case processing.
(m) The panel may provide funding for incentives to counties to develop county level community juvenile justice councils and to expand existing county level groups for programs to reduce disproportionality. The panel may seek funding for the incentives from the department of correction, the department of child services, the courts, and private funding sources.
(n) The panel may provide funding for programs to train school resource officers and school police departments on the reduction of disproportionate minority contact and the use of alternatives to juvenile court referral or arrest for low risk and medium risk youth of color.
(o) The panel may provide funding for promising practice model programs or programs to assist families and youth of color in understanding the implications of interacting with law enforcement and juvenile justice systems and to teach families and youth of color how to interact appropriately with law enforcement so as to decrease the chances for negative outcomes from encounters with the law enforcement and the juvenile justice system.
(p) The panel shall develop a program to examine the street level contact that law enforcement has with youth of color and the disposition of each contact, particularly in terms of:
(6) reasons for the contact; and
(7) immediate outcome of the contact.
(q) The panel shall develop an online statewide data base to collect and disseminate information on:
(1) alternative justice programs;
(2) cultural competency best practices and standards; and
(3) disproportionate minority contact.
(r) The panel periodically shall convene a conference with representatives from:
(1) juvenile justice agencies;
(2) counties; and
(3) community partners;
to highlight the issue of racial disparity. At a conference convened under this subsection, the participants shall share technical
information and data on disproportionality and seek collaborative solutions.