At 71 years and still going strong, Pine Grove Youth Conservation Camp is the oldest continuously operated fire camp in California. Inside CDCR goes behind the scenes at the camp.
Five days a week, 52 weeks each year, juvenile offenders throughout CDCR’s Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) are honing their social skills. Skill of the Week is a Cognitive Behavior Treatment program that takes place in a living unit in a large group setting, led by either a Youth Correctional Counselor or mental health expert.
CDCR parole agents work around the clock to keep the community safe, from checking in on parolees on their caseloads to make sure they’re following their conditions of parole to connecting former offenders with resources that will help them be successful in their communities. One of the key roles agents play is in maintaining an open dialogue with parolees, explaining to them in no uncertain terms why it’s important to stay on the right track.
Dozens of parolees gathered recently at a Sacramento church to begin the next chapter in their lives. The Parole and Community Team orientation meeting is a mandatory event that gives people just released from prison a chance to see what services are available in their communities to help them succeed at home.
The human brain is not fully developed until around age 25, which may help explain why teenagers and people in their early 20s don’t always act or react in the same way as adults. Psychologist Heather Bowlds, Division of Juvenile Justice Associate Director of Mental Health, visited California State Prison-Solano to explain the adolescent brain to inmate mentors and staff.
The majority of inmates in California prisons will one day be released. Then what? What are their options? Where do they turn? Are there resources and jobs waiting on the outside? Hundreds of inmates at California State Prison-Solano recently spent an afternoon looking for answers to better prepare them to reenter the community.
The successful reintegration of offenders into their communities is a vital part of CDCR’s efforts. At the forefront of this charge is the Division of Adult Parole Operations (DAPO), tasked with supervising thousands of former inmates as they return home. Under the direction of Denise Milano, Regional Parole Administrator for the DAPO Northern Region, DAPO has successfully developed supervision models for a diverse and increasingly high-risk parolee population. For these efforts, she is recognized as the DAPO Professional of the Year.
Psychologist Heather Bowlds’ leadership in overhauling the mental health program for youthful offenders is recognized and appreciated by CDCR, which has named her the 2016 Division of Juvenile Justice Professional of the Year.
Inside CDCR recently sat down with Anthony Lucero, the 28-year Division of Juvenile Justice veteran who was named division director. He discusses the journey that has led him to a fulfilling career, and how he is looking forward to the challenges ahead.
Ventura Youth Correctional Facility Superintendent Mark Blaser recently retired from CDCR’s Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ). Inside CDCR caught up with Blaser as he wasted no time enjoying his retirement.