WASHINGTON — Youth workers and researchers urged better collaboration between child welfare and juvenile justice to help young people who end up in both systems at a Capitol Hill hearing on Tuesday.
The Senate Judiciary hearing, held as part of National Foster Care Month, looked at how jurisdictions across the country are finding ways to help “dual status” or “crossover” youth by sharing information, staff and responsibility for outcomes.
Those practices are not the norm everywhere.
“In many jurisdictions, the child welfare system and juvenile justice system have little or no interaction or coordination, and even simple information sharing is limited or nonexistent,” said Judiciary Chairman Charles E. Grassley, R-Iowa.
The lack of information sharing means jurisdictions find it difficult to identify crossover youth, said Macon Stewart, senior program manager at the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown University. The center helps counties and states improve care for crossover youth.