The Youth Justice unit's authority results from the Youth Justice Code (Wisconsin Statute 938). The legislative intent is to provide services to juvenile delinquents and their families. The purpose is to:
Protect the community
Impose accountability for violations of law
Equip offenders with competencies to live responsibility and productively
The unit is staffed with social workers who supervise juveniles and provide services and case manage informally or through court orders.
Referrals and Recommendations
Referrals are normally received from law enforcement regarding violations of law. An investigation into what happened, as well as what the consequences will be is explored with the child and family.
Recommendations are made to the District Attorney's office and sometimes involve Juvenile Court intervention.
There are a wide variety of community services which the child and family can receive. In some situations, social workers will work with children and families on a voluntary basis.
Social workers provide custody intake. Sometimes, an emergency situation arises which requires a social worker to make a determination of whether a child needs to be held in physical custody because allegations of serious law violation or because of maltreatment.