If your child was recently charged with a crime, you might be wondering what happens next. In the state of New Jersey, crimes committed by minors are handled by the Juvenile Justice Commission (JJC). While this may sound intimidating, bear in mind that we are still dealing with children.Yes, actions need consequences, which we tend to think of when dealing with adults. The justice system serves justice for wrongdoings. When we’re talking about kids, the JJC takes a multidimensional approach.
Care, Custody, and Rehabilitation
While some crimes committed by juveniles can face sentenced detention times, that’s not the case for most offenses. New Jersey JJC takes the approach of correcting what went wrong. The goal here is to stop the behavior and prevent future occurrences.JJC uses services and supervision to provide help and rehabilitation for minors. This system is much less about punishment and much more about aid. Depending on the nature of the crime, services can include:
- Community service
- Treatment services
- Counseling or substance abuse rehabilitation
- Work or vocational programs
While the above services are ordered to help the minor child find better-coping skills, or become more productive, some of the outcomes from JJC can still have consequences. They might also face:
- Loss of driving privileges
- Recompense for loses
Navigating the JJC system
If your child has had a recent encounter with the legal system and you’re now wondering what happens, you might want to get involved with the process. While its goal is rehabilitation, JJC can have lasting consequences for repeat or serious offenses. If you’re already involved with JJC and feel like there is little forward movement, you have options. Seek out the advice of advocates or get familiar with your parental rights to ensure current behavior doesn’t predict future outcomes.