Intervention Reduces Delinquent Behavior, Drug-Use and Recidivism
Among Arrested Youth
interventions can improve the behavior and psychosocial functioning
of youths arrested on misdemeanor or felony charges, according
to an evaluation of the Family Empowerment Intervention (FEI).
Arrested youths and their families participated in three one-hour
family meetings per week for approximately ten weeks. The
meetings sought to improve family functioning by establishing
boundaries and expectations, improving parenting, communication,
and problem-solving skills, and connecting the family to other
social support systems.
Compared to youths
who only received services routinely provided by the juvenile
justice system, youths participating in the FEI had lower
rates of reported drug sales, a reduced frequency of getting
very high or drunk on alcohol, and less short-term marijuana
use. In addition, youths completing the intervention were
more likely to have favorable outcomes than all other youths.
FEI completers had lower rates of reported involvement in
drug sales, total delinquency, and crimes against persons;
fewer new arrests and new charges; a reduced frequency of
getting very high or drunk on alcohol; and less short-term
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