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Document Code No.: JJS-8-2-EO
Sponsoring Agency: Department of Public Health
Effective Date: November 16, 2017
Approved: /s/ Dow Constantine
Type of Action: New

Signed document (PDF, 106KB)

The purpose of this executive order is to establish an interdepartmental team that will provide the Executive with a plan and timeline to restructure juvenile detention into a public health model using a therapeutic approach to the delivery of juvenile detention services in King County.

WHEREAS, the County Executive is committed to eliminating racial disparities in the juvenile justice system and advancing the goal of zero youth detention; and

WHEREAS, King County is building a continuum of services to help keep children and families from involvement with the justice system through upstream investments in prevention and early intervention service via Best Starts for Kids and other programming based in research and science;

WHEREAS, King County has made great strides in reducing the use of secure confinement of juveniles over the last 20 years through innovative and collaborative juvenile justice reform delivered in partnership with employees, separately elected officials, and community organizations; and

WHEREAS, despite the efforts that resulted in a significant reduction in the use of secure detention for youth since 1998, youth of color continue to be disproportionately affected by the use of secure detention,; and

WHEREAS, King County is dedicated to developing and implementing a holistic, trauma informed juvenile justice system serving children and youth.

NOW, THEREFORE, I Dow Constantine, King County Executive, do hereby order and direct:

The formation of an interdepartmental team consisting of, at a minimum, Public Health – Seattle & King County; the Department of Adult and Juvenile Detention; the Department of Community and Human Services; the Office of Performance, Strategy and Budget;  the Office of Labor Relations; the Human Resources Division; and the Office of the Executive.

The interdepartmental team will gather, assess, and analyze the leading science and evidence-based research around a public health approach to juvenile justice. It will formulate plans for the Executive to consider regarding reorganizing juvenile detention services under the oversight and direction of Public Health – Seattle & King County.  The examination should take into consideration other lines of business, programs, and services within King County government that may benefit from a unified governance structure and holistic approach for youth in order to reach our goal of healthy families and healthy communities. 

The interdepartmental team will:

1.         Obtain input and feedback from a wide array of stakeholders including: community members, other branches of King County government, and other jurisdictions within the county; and

2.         Conduct King County employee engagement activities to identify potential labor impacts and considerations involved with reorganizing juvenile detention services under the oversight and direction of Public Health – Seattle & King County; and

3.         Develop a full fiscal analysis in the context of a 2019-2020 budget proposal; and

4.         Ensure plans are aligned with a variety of policy guidance recommendations, including but not limited to the Juvenile Justice Equity Steering Committee Recommendations Report, and the Youth Action Plan; and

5.         Include a clearly articulated theory of change for the juvenile detention restructure plan; and

6.         Submit a report that includes the juvenile detention restructure plan and timeline to the King County Executive no later than February 15, 2018.

Dated and effective this 16 day of November, 2017.

/s/ Dow Constantine
King County Executive

/s/ Norm Alberg
Director, Records and Licensing Services Division