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Unfinished Business: Confronting Juvenile Substance Abuse

NCJ Number
Children's Legal Rights Journal Volume: 8 Issue: 1 Dated: (Winter 1987) Pages: 2-6
D J Facciolo
Date Published
5 pages
The relationship between drug and alcohol abuse and crime is well-documented. Given the high involvement of juveniles in crime in Delaware, it is likely that a substantial number of these youth are at least occasional substance abusers.
In 1985, 250 substance abusers appeared in family court, the court completed 313 drug evaluations of juveniles, and at least 75 youth had addictions severe enough to require residential treatment. A survey of noncorrectional group care clients in the State revealed that 64 percent had a history of drug abuse, 50 percent came from dysfunctional families, and 45 percent had previous histories of civil State custody. To deal with this problem, the Delaware General Aseembly is considering enacting legislation to decrease the availability of alcohol and drugs to juveniles and to require juvenile substance abuse diversion. In addition to statutory responses, education, rehabilitative treatment, and aftercare services will be needed.