Wayne County's Director of Juvenile and Youth Services Shenetta Coleman was announced today as one of Gov. Rick Snyder's appointees to serve on the restructured Michigan Committee on Juvenile Justice.
Created by Executive Order 2012-1, the committee advises the governor on juvenile justice issues and guides effective implementation of juvenile policies and programs. The recent signing of Executive Order 2017-12 restructured the committee to be composed of between 15 and 33 members to comply with the federal Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention Act.
"I thank these individuals for their dedication to the juvenile justice system," Snyder said. "Their vast and diverse experience gives me confidence in their ability to serve the state well."
Coleman, of Redford Township, holds a bachelor's degree in criminal justice and a master's degree in sociology from Eastern Michigan University. As well as a Doctor of Philosophy degree from Capella University. She will represent public agencies concerned with delinquency prevention or treatment. The department of Juvenile and Youth Services is a division of Wayne County Health, Veterans, and Community Wellness. One of the programs operated by the department is called First Contact, which is a home-based alternative to incarceration for young people. First Contact programs provide support services and resources to keep at-risk youth out of the criminal justice system and in their homes with their families.
Historically, Wayne County has been plagued by inadequate resources and few effective home-based alternatives to juvenile detention or jail. First Contact is one of the few programs available and in fiscal year 2017, served 3,224 youth. Eighty-eight percent of those youth met program goals. Also under the purview of the department:
Warrant Enforcement Bureau - The Department's Warrant Enforcement Bureau (WEB), provides enforcement and investigative services to the various programs provided by the Department. WEB's mission is to provide effective law enforcement and security services for all Juvenile and Youth Services programs.
Juvenile Detention Division - The Department of Juvenile and Youth Services Juvenile Detention Facility (WCJDF) provides safe, secure and humane detention services to juveniles pending completion of legal proceedings. Juveniles housed at JDF are awaiting adjudication, sentencing or placement. Educational services through an on-site charter school, on and off site medical services, on-site dental services, mental health services, appropriate recreational activities, counseling and behavior management activities are provided to young people housed in the Juvenile Detention Facility.
"A strong juvenile services program has a direct impact on families and community safety. Everyone benefits when challenged youth are offered a more positive life path," said Coleman. "This appointment gives me the opportunity to advocate for effective prevention and treatment programs needed to address juvenile delinquents, not only on behalf of the thousands of young people and families we serve in Wayne County services each year, but for other deserving families living in the State of Michigan."