July 20, 2005 - Posted at 4:45 p.m. CDT
Jonesboro, AR - Here in Region 8, teens who break the law now have a new way to stay out of Juvie. St. Bernards Behavior Health Summer Program lasts all summer and costs tax payers less money than juvenile detention.
Program Coordinator Steve Curry says it’s better to keep teens in a positive environment rather than incarceration, “They’re coming here three times a week. They’re getting some skills training, and they’re able to go home and interact in that home environment and try some of these things out, just to see how it goes.”
Repeat offenders and teens who’ve committed serious crimes might not be eligible for the program, so, the judges work with juvenile officers to find the best place for an offender. Juvenile Intake Officer Ashley Boles refers teens to the program for “anger management counseling and life skills training – things they’re not going to get in a detention center.”