Professor Carter Hay Receives Contract from the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice to Study Juvenile Offenders in Residential Facilities

October 12, 2012

Filed Under: Awards, Faculty, Research

Professor Carter Hay’s Residential Positive Achievement Change Tool (R-PACT) Validation project with the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) focuses on juvenile offenders in residential facilities. The Residential Positive Achievement Change Tool (R-PACT) is used by DJJ to track the criminogenic needs and risks of offenders regarding such things as educational progress, relationships with family members, attitudes about drugs and alcohol, and the development of social skills for controlling emotions and behavior.

DJJ has contracted with Dr. Hay to answer two questions. First, can the R-PACT data be used to accurately predict who will recidivate in the period after release?  Second, during the stay in a residential facility, do juvenile offenders experience improvements on the key criminogenic risks measured by the R-PACT, and do the juveniles showing the most improvements go on to have lower recidivism rates? These facilities offer substantial rehabilitative programming for offenders, thus raising the possibility that offenders could experience improvements in criminogenic risk during the period of incarceration that lead to genuine reductions in later crime.

This project therefore offers the hope of learning more about what sort of changes juveniles experience during their time in a residential facility, and how such changes affect their involvement in crime after they are released.