Illinois Juvenile Justice Commission
DISPROPORTIONATE MINORITY CONTACT COMMITTEE

February 9, 2009
1:00 PM - 2:30 PM
Doubletree Hotel, Chicago


Meeting was called to order at 1:11 PM.

Roll Call

Commissioners: Pam Rodriguez, Gene Griffin, Wayne Straza, Rev. Charles Collins and Andrew Jones.  Quorum Present.

Staff/Guests: Miguel Millett, Angela Greene, Karrie Rueter, Deborah McCarrel, Mary O'Brien, and Julie Stremlau. Dr. Jeffrey Butts, Martarita Hanson-King

Pam Rodriguez motioned to approve minutes, Wayne Straza seconded.  All approved, motion passed.

Site Updates

Miguel Millett reported that Ted Baugh, DMC Coordinator, is no longer working for St. Clair County.  At this time, it is unclear whether St. Clair Co. will continue to move forward.  There has been an issue with finding a replacement for Mr. Baugh.

Pam Rodriguez asked if the area had sustainability.  Even if the money is appropriated, the concern is whether they have the infrastructure and the ability to sustain the program.  Mr. Millett does not feel there is enough community involvement.  The Committee agreed Mr. Millett and Rev. Collins should make a visit to St. Clair.  Approval was given for a letter to be sent addressing the Committee's concerns.  The letter will be from the Chair of the DMC Committee.

Macon County has had varied success with their program.  Their information is not timely and there is a lack of community involvement.  They will be encouraged to get the community more involved and develop some training for them.

The Engaging Youth-Summer Work Program with the Public Works department was a great opportunity for the kids.  They developed a literacy program and provided training for investing money wisely.

The Sauk Village YES group has a Community Mapping process.  These areas continue to be run down.  The youth in these areas received computers and monitors.  The Chicago Athletic Program provided games and social events.  Probation violators have decreased but there has been an increase in detention.

The Peoria project has Peace Keeping Circles.  They are making progress as they have added another school.  There have been over 60 teachers trained.  A peer jury has also been established.

Englewood and Lawndale have Community Engagement.  The Town Hall Meetings are facilitated by the youth.  The Cook County Juvenile Detention Center has given informational presentations on DMC, JDAI, etc.

Oregon Youth Summit on DMC Review

Rev. Collins introduced Angela Greene.  She informed the Committee of the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Summit DMC is planning.  They want this Summit to reach out to the legislators.  The south suburbs are in dire need of assistance.  The request to the Commission (pdf) is to help assist DMC in continuing their work and to fund the Summit.  The plan is to get the legislators interested and to make them aware of the dire need in these communities.

There was discussion of the intent of the Summit and the cost ($15,000).  The Committee was informed of the need for more judges as the timeliness of adjudication is being pushed back as far as May and June for youth in these areas.  It was also noted that there is an increase in migration to the suburbs.  It was suggested that the Summit date be changed to April as there would be more public support and it would better coincide with funding cycles.  Karrie Rueter noted that Title V money could possibly be considered to fund the Summit, however, she will have to check into it.

Pam Rodriguez stated there is a need to educate, including state foundations, in order to generate support and partnerships.  It was recommended to use the Latino data to further show the need for the Summit.  Karrie Rueter requested an update on the status of the Summit for the March Illinois Juvenile Justice Commission meeting.  Rev. Collins requested a motion for the DMC Committee to approve the Summit request be presented to the Commission.  Pam Rodriguez motioned.  Wayne Straza seconded the motion.  All in favor, motion passed.

Evaluation Updates

Dr. Jeffrey Butts reported that the Burns Institute Project Pilot was a success, however, there was less than a 50% response and Dr. Butts speculated this was due to the topic of the survey.  There were no complaints regarding usability.  Dr. Butts stated the survey should come from DHS, the Commission or some governmental entity.  He believed there were too many IRB restrictions as a result of University involvement.  A broader state sample is recommended.  Dr. Butts gave a review of the results.  There will be a full report submitted at a later date.

Schoolhouse Adjustment Program

Discussion tabled due to time constraints.  A presentation will be made at the full Commission meeting, time permitting.

Title II Application - DMC Section

Karrie Rueter informed the Committee that the Title II application is due soon.  As a Committee we need to discuss where DMC will go in the next three years, as DMC is a core requirement and this is a significant component of the state's 3-year plan.  Karrie asked the Committee to submit their thoughts and comments to her or Miguel Millett via email.  The final plan/application will be sent in March.

Pam Rodriguez stated that DMC is not just a service issue.  Senate Bill 0776 declared a crisis on black males in Illinois.  Policy efforts on a statewide level would attract attention and enforce compliance.  This Committee should consider changing the policies and practices, and not just providing services.  Change has to come from many levels.  There is a perceived acceptance of the existence of disproportionality, but good data does not exist to support the perception we know to be true.

Karrie Rueter stated, on a national level, if we don't start demonstrating that we are bringing about change we will not be in compliance.  Collection of data can demonstrate that but we are not doing that well.  The reports are coming in but are not complete.  It was recommended that there be training on data collection and for Models for Change and the DMC Committee to come together.  Suggestions were to adapt the data points, add more elements, and to get all the data required.  Pam added that if they are receiving funding then we should be receiving data.

New Business/Other

There is a task force that reports to the governor about specific legislative bills and how these bills will affect African American males.  The DHS contact is Terrence Mitchell.

Miguel Millett passed out the Action Network quarterly arrest report.  The Committee is to review, revise and address how to proceed.

Adjourn

Wayne Straza motioned to end the DMC meeting.  Pam Rodriguez seconded the motion.  All in favor.  The DMC Committee Meeting was adjourned at 2:59 PM.