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Florida Steps in Early, and Troubled Teenagers Respond

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Are_grits_groceries Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 08:21 AM
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Florida Steps in Early, and Troubled Teenagers Respond
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. Sarah Cooksey, 30, and her husband, Tom, are firefighters, and Sarah is an emergency medical technician as well. I run into burning buildings and help people in the deepest crises, she said.

So she felt bewildered and desperate when deteriorating relations with their adopted daughter, Amanda, culminated in a vicious physical fight, with the 17-year-old girl stomping out of the house. The police, who picked up Amanda, suggested an emergency shelter for a two-week cooling off period, a place where troubled teenagers receive anger-management lessons, social skills classes and counseling for themselves and their parents and later bedtimes if they follow the rules.

Amandas voluntary stint in that group home in February was the start of family healing, both she and her parents said recently

The shelter in Tallahassee, one of 28 around the state, is part of a system of aid for adolescents that, in its breadth and approach, represents a major shift in thinking around the country: earlier intervention when families are boiling over, rather than waiting until the children end up in costly, soul-crushing detention or foster care.

The system of respite and treatment aims to keep families intact and divert ungovernable children from a criminal path. It is run by the Florida Network of Youth and Family Services, a nonprofit umbrella group, and is financed by the State Department of Juvenile Justice. An evaluation in 2001 by Florida Tax Watch, a private research group, found that the network was probably saving the state $15 million or more a year by keeping vulnerable children out of detention.

It sounds like a good idea! Better than foster care.
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annabanana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-05-08 08:33 AM
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1. Gee! Who would have thought that responding in a proportional and rational
fashion would have such good results?

Surely incarceration or foster care would be easier & cheaper...

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