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Profiling the Needs of the California Youth Authority's Female Population, 1996 (ICPSR 2754) RSS

Principal Investigator(s):

Summary:

This study was designed to assess the needs and characteristics of the female juvenile offender population in California and to evaluate the existing program structure. The main focus was to conduct a pilot study to test an instrument the researchers had designed for profiling the needs of youthful female offenders in developing a protocol for use by other jurisdictions and agencies working with delinquent female youths. To study the needs and program demands of young female offenders, the researchers conducted a profile survey of 162 randomly-selected women at the Ventura School in the California Youth Authority (CYA) in the summer of 1996. The data are the result of personal interviews using a modified version of the instrument used for a 1995 study of adult female offenders in the California Department of Corrections by the principal investigators. Information was collected on demographics, social and economic background, criminal history, and correctional experiences. Demographic variables include age, race and ethnicity, marital status, and parents' marital status. Variables on social and economic background include religious preference, living situation, education, work history, family relationships, pregnancy history while incarcerated, and family and juvenile history. Criminal history variables cover gang involvement, arrest and sentence information, offense profile, reasons for committing the offense, weapon use, substance abuse history, and personal abuse. Variables on correctional experiences include abuse counseling, HIV testing, correctional programming participation, work experience during incarceration, and California Youth Authority housing assignment.

Access Notes

  • These data are freely available.

Dataset(s)

Dataset - Download All Files (3.6 MB)
Documentation:

Study Description

Citation

Owen, Barbara, and Barbara Bloom. PROFILING THE NEEDS OF THE CALIFORNIA YOUTH AUTHORITY'S FEMALE POPULATION, 1996. ICPSR02754-v1. Fresno, CA: California State University [producer], 1997. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1999. http://doi.org/10.3886/ICPSR02754.v1

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Funding

This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (95-IJ-CX-0098)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:   correctional facilities (juveniles), criminal histories, demographic characteristics, female offenders, juvenile offenders, needs assessment, population characteristics

Geographic Coverage:   California, United States

Time Period:  

  • 1996

Date of Collection:  

  • 1996

Unit of Observation:   Individuals

Universe:   Young female offenders in the California Youth Authority system.

Data Types:   survey data

Methodology

Study Purpose:   While young female offenders remain a small minority within the juvenile justice system, the unique needs and program demands of this population require particular attention in terms of research and policy. Some research findings suggest delinquent females tend to be similar to male delinquents in terms of lower socioeconomic status, disrupted family backgrounds, and school difficulties. Most researchers argue, however, that girls' lives and girls' problems present unique challenges for the juvenile justice system and related social service agencies. These gender-based differences shape both offense patterning and policy response. This study was designed to assess the female juvenile offender population in terms of its characteristics and existing program structure. The main focus was to conduct a pilot study to test an instrument the researchers had designed for profiling the needs of youthful female offenders in developing a protocol for use by other jurisdictions and agencies working with delinquent females. The instrument and its accompanying instructions were intended as a guide to managers, researchers, and line staff who wanted to collect and analyze systematic information on their youthful female offender population.

Study Design:   To study the needs and program demands of young female offenders, the researchers conducted a profile survey of 162 randomly-selected women at the Ventura School in the California Youth Authority (CYA) in the summer of 1996. The data are the result of personal interviews administered using a modified version of the instrument from a 1995 study of adult female offenders in the California Department of Corrections by the principal investigators. This study was designed to be a pilot study testing an instrument the researchers had designed for profiling the needs of youthful female offenders in developing a protocol for use by other jurisdictions and agencies working with youthful female offenders.

Sample:   Random sampling.

Data Source:

personal interviews

Description of Variables:   Demographic variables include age, race and ethnicity, marital status, and parents' marital status. Variables on social and economic background include religious preference, living situation, education, work history, family relationships, pregnancy history while incarcerated, and family and juvenile history. Criminal history variables cover gang involvement, arrest and sentence information, offense profile, reasons for committing the offense, weapon use, substance abuse history, and personal abuse. Variables on correctional experiences include abuse counseling, HIV testing, correctional programming participation, work experience during incarceration, and California Youth Authority housing assignment.

Response Rates:   The total response rate was 97 percent.

Presence of Common Scales:   None

Extent of Processing:  ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Standardized missing values.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.

Version(s)

Original ICPSR Release:  

Version History:

  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.

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