Wednesday, February 25, 2009

KLAS-TV: Metro Youth Program

Metro's Police Athletic League has succeeded in steering some students away from gangs. Now they're going for another goal for the youth program.

Officers work closely with these students and many now want to go into law enforcement. But as mentors, officers wanted to show there are a lot of options out there, regardless of where you come from.

"A lot of the kids love sports, so we kind of use that as a carrot to get them in and get them tutoring and get them help in school," said Melissa Lardomita with the PAL program.

PAL has lured about 300 students into gyms, getting them off the streets and on the right track.
It's kind of obvious that the more stable adult attention you give to kids, the more they are going to be diverted from drugs, gangs and crime. These programs tend to work while the "scared straight" programs don't.

The only problem is that there is never enough adult attention to go around. In America, youth programs have always taken a back seat to pure enforcement, and with budgets being cut, that's only going to get worse.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

AP: Child Services Cuts Debated

Child Services Cuts Debated
(AP, via KLAS-TV, 2/17)
Representatives from Washoe and Clark counties, Nevada's largest, told legislators at a joint Senate-Assembly budget hearing that they're anticipating a ripple effect in the need for services because of the economic downturn.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

L.A. Times: States Face Budget Pain

Nevada has the nation's worse budget shortfall, according to this article....

Washington state's predicament illustrates the brutal reality lawmakers are facing in the hardest-hit states. Washington's budget gap for 2010 will total 18.5% of its general fund, making it the sixth-worst situation in the nation. (Nevada is facing the most serious shortfall, with a 38% gap; California's 22% gap is the fourth-worst, behind Arizona at 28% and New York at 24%, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.)

Friday, February 6, 2009

L.V. Sun: Teen Sentencing

The teenager driving the truck Coronado High School sophomore Olivia Brandise Hyten, 15, was riding in when she died in a crash last fall will spend the next six months in youth detention
Just about the only punishment there is in juvenile court is six months detention. (It's actually an indeterminate amount based on the youth's behavior.)