Innovations in NYC Health and Human Services Policy The Close to Home Initiative and Related Reforms in Juvenile Justice


Guided by research indicating that community-based alternatives are often more effective and less expensive and stigmatizing than placing juvenile offenders in institutional facilities, New York City has worked to reduce over-reliance on such dispositions and to ensure that those youth that may be placed in an institutional facility are in one near their communities to foster familial and educational connections. This brief describes the impetus and context of a series of related and ambitious strategies undertaken in 2012 under the Close to Home initiative, provides detailed information on each of the reform areas and the improvements seen to date, and concludes with a discussion of challenges and next steps.