On Tuesday January 23, 2018, the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office spearheaded a multi-disciplinary collaborative meeting, encompassing all youth serving committees in bold pursuit of increased information sharing, synergies and streamlining of efforts. The meeting, held at the Burlington County Emergency Training Center, and was led and organized by First Assistant Prosecutor, Philip Aronow.
The meeting provided a forum for the municipalities that fall under the auspices of the Burlington County Juvenile Delinquency Prevention Policy Board to meet simultaneously for the first portion of the meeting. The municipalities, with assistance from WRI, Burlington City, Pemberton Township and Willingboro, hosted representatives from additional Burlington County municipalities to further their reach geographically and to serve as leaders in their respective roles in the municipal planning process.
During the second portion, attendees branched out and attended two Subject Matter Sessions. The Sessions were for the Burlington County Enhancing Youth Services and Education (EYES) and for the Stationhouse Adjustment Subcommittees. EYES is dedicated to enhancing youth related services and nurturing relationships among education, juvenile justice, child welfare and human services sectors to best serve the intended population. The Stationhouse Adjustment Subcommittee comprises local and state representatives and its goal is to foster a relationship between the community and law enforcement, while increasing opportunities to divert youth who have committed minor offenses out of the juvenile justice system.
The final portion of the meeting brought all attendees together for opening remarks from Judge Richard Nocella, Judiciary; Philip Aronow, Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office; Greg Lambard, Judiciary; and Ric Carpenter, Department of Human Services. In addition to updates provided by EYES and the Stationhouse Adjustment Subcommittee, the Burlington County Children’s Inter-Agency Coordinating Committee (CIACC), and the County of Burlington Youth Services Advisory Council (YSAC) reported out on their accomplishments and plan for 2018.
In the end, attendees were optimistic about the new combined county meeting model. The model will be utilized moving forward and will serve as a template for communities who have demonstrated a need for a collaborative and streamlined approach.