Young adults (ages 16-24) are involved with the criminal justice system in disproportionate numbers compared to other age groups. A growing body of research shows that this population is closer developmentally to teenagers than to older adults and, therefore, it is more effective to address their criminal behavior with age-appropriate treatments, including diversion programs. Diversion programs redirect individuals, typically youth and first-time offenders, from prosecution and/or incarceration to community-based programming, case management, and supports.
In 2017, the U.S. Department of Education, in partnership with the U.S. Department of Justice, funded a 3-year technical assistance initiative that is helping 16 state and local partnerships provide their justice-involved young adult population with alternatives to prosecution and/or incarceration, including special education, career and technical education, and other workforce development opportunities.
Technical Assistance Partnerships:
These CTE programs build on existing efforts to improve reentry outcomes for youth who have been in the justice system, with a focus on building strong partnerships to implement a comprehensive and collaborative approach to improving education, employment, and other positive outcomes for justice-involved youth and young adults. Jobs for the Future is providing technical assistance and subject matter expertise to support the implementation of these programs.”