The Juvenile Justice and Adult Correction merger was announced Tuesday and described as part of the consolidation of related state agencies that has been underway since 2011, and an ongoing effort to find ways to save money.
According to the News & Observer some child-welfare advocates expressed concern Wednesday about the merger of the state adult prison and juvenile justice sections of the N.C. Department of Public Safety. Their concerns were that there will be adult and juvenile programs that will be combined and that the juveniles will not receive the attention they need.
According to the Department of Public Safety’s Press Release:
The new organizational structure only affects upper management roles at the division level. Commissioner W. David Guice will oversee the Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice. He has been Commissioner of the Division of Adult Correction since January. James “J.R.” Gorham will now serve alongside Guice as Executive Officer of the division
“Our Juvenile Justice and Correction professionals are continuing to make great strides in community-based programs that are proven to reduce recidivism,” Commissioner Guice said. “We recognize that how we work with juveniles differs greatly from how we manage adults, and I want to emphasize that we will continue to let our experts in the field do what they do best.”
Commissioner Guice added that the combining of common resources from both Juvenile Justice and Adult Correction will benefit the entire division and aid its employees in achieving their distinct and unique missions. It looks like the only thing will change is who certain departments will report to.