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Study of the Impact of Screening for Poly-Victimization in Juvenile Justice: The Rocky Road to a Successful Investigation in the Real World

NCJ Number
Date Published
22 pages
Since poly-victimization during formative developmental periods represents an important focus for screening and assessment in settings and populations in which interpersonal violence is pervasive, this article reports on the multistage evolution of a research project designed to empirically test a poly-victimization enhancement of a widely used and validated behavioral health screening tool for youth, using retrospective and prospective archival juvenile justice system outcome data.

Several operational and methodological revisions to the project's design and procedures were required due to barriers that resulted from unforeseen shifts in the host juvenile justice system's policies and personnel. The current report describes real-world challenges that face investigators working in public-sector systems, and highlights the key role of establishing long-term collaborative professional relationships with personnel at all levels in those systems based on providing services and evaluation data that meet the system's core goals, responsibilities, and mission. Also highlighted are the methodological and logistical adaptations needed to successfully accomplish a project's internal objectives while striking a balance between flexibility in operational and methodological tactics on one hand, and adherence to ethical, conceptual/clinical, and methodological principles on the other hand. (publisher abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 2018