A national survey of substance abuse treatment for juvenile offenders

J Subst Abuse Treat. 2007 Apr;32(3):255-66. doi: 10.1016/j.jsat.2006.12.018. Epub 2007 Mar 9.


Despite consensus about the value of substance abuse treatment for delinquent youth, information about its prevalence and availability is inadequate and inconsistent. This article presents findings about treatment and other correctional service provision from a national survey of directors of 141 juvenile institutional and community corrections (CC) facilities. Educational/General Educational Development programming and drug and alcohol education were the most prevalent types of correctional and substance abuse services. Other common services included physical health services and mental health assessment, provided to about 60% of youth across facilities, and mental health counseling, life and communication skills, and anger management, provided to about half of the youth. Substance abuse treatment, as with most other services, were more prevalent in large, state-funded residential facilities (where 66% provided treatment) than in local detention centers (20%) and CC facilities (56%). More detailed data showed that the number of youth attending treatment in all types of facilities on any given day was very low.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Attitude of Health Personnel
  • Criminal Law / statistics & numerical data
  • Data Collection
  • Education
  • Humans
  • Juvenile Delinquency / rehabilitation*
  • Juvenile Delinquency / statistics & numerical data*
  • Prisons / organization & administration
  • Prisons / statistics & numerical data
  • Residential Facilities
  • Substance Abuse Treatment Centers / statistics & numerical data
  • Substance-Related Disorders / epidemiology
  • Substance-Related Disorders / rehabilitation*
  • United States / epidemiology