Journal Issue: The Juvenile Court Volume 6 Number 3 Winter 1996
The juvenile court of the future will likely remain as society's most significant enterprise to intervene on behalf of children and families in crisis. The court's jurisdiction may be reduced in delinquency cases involving older youths and serious criminality, as well as in status offense matters, while the court will continue to have an active role in child welfare cases. The rehabilitative ideals of the court, however, will not be forgotten. In fact, should the court help create a juvenile justice system which addresses the full range of delinquency, status offenses, and child abuse and neglect cases, its influence on the community will increase. Other changes should include modifications in court structure with increased utilization of unified family and coordinated courts, improved and expanded ADR programs, and the expansion of volunteer organizations and partnerships with the private sector. Such developments will be necessary, in light of the likelihood of reduced federal resources for children and families through budget cuts and block grants. In spite of the anticipated reductions, these changes should enable the court to remain effective in the resolution of problems facing children and families in crisis.