The research sought to answer several basic questions about youth who are involved in the state's dependency and delinquency systems:
- What are the characteristics of crossover youth in the state? How are they the same or different from other youth that are involved in the state's dependency and delinquency systems?
- What are the service needs of crossover youth?
- What efforts have been made by Maryland child-serving agencies and the juvenile court to respond to crossover youth?
- To what extent do local practices comport with those identified as evidence-based in the crossover literature? What are the barriers to effectively managing and serving crossover youth?
One aspect of the study (CINA BCity_Archive_final_Corrected-ICPSR.sav) was framed from the perspective of the dependency system and due to project resource constraints was confined to Baltimore City. Analytic samples focused on youth born between July 1991 and June 1994 who had a Child in Need of Assistance (CINA) petition filed in the city between 2003 and June 2011 and a subset of these youth who also were arrested and referred for intake to the juvenile justice system through June 2011. Data on CINA proceedings and case histories were drawn from the court-based information system. Data collection and analyses of CINA results involved 400 youth, 200 in each of crossover and CINA-only groups.
For the Stakeholder survey (CY Stakeholder Survey_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav), web-based survey software was used to administer the survey. Prospective participants were recruited via email messages that included a survey URL tied to each recipients' email address. Nonrespondents were sent up to three follow-up recruitment emails. The lone exception to the survey protocol involved Baltimore City Department of Social Services, which was not able to provide a contact list of case workers targeted for participation. Therefore, arrangements were made for the agency to send an email invitation to all case workers, which included a survey URL not connected to individual recipients' addresses.
The survey administration took place in phases, starting in the fall of 2011, and ending in the fall of 2013. Recipients targeted in the first two phases were determined by ongoing snowball sampling. The survey participation recruitment message, as well as the title page of the survey, explained the survey objective and the specific definition of crossover youth on which the survey was based. As part of the informed consent process, survey materials explained that participation was voluntary and answers would be treated a confidential.
A third aspect of the analysis (Delinquency_Risk_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav) was designed to place crossover youth in the context of the delinquency system and compared samples of youth who had delinquency petitions filed in one of the five study jurisdictions between July 2009 and June 2011 and a subset of these youth who also had CINA petitions filed at any time in the past. The final analytic sample included 526 crossover youth and 601 delinquency-only youth. Comparisons examined court and delinquency record information, and results of risk screens conducted at the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services (DJS) intake and an extensive needs assessment done at adjudication.
The Maryland Comprehensive Assessment and Service Planning (MCASP) needs assessment (Needs_Archive_final-ICPSR.sav) was employed later in case processing, with youth who were adjudicated delinquent and placed on probation or committed to the Department of Juvenile Services (DJS). The assessment covered 10 different scored domains. The MCASP needs assessment was initiated statewide in February, 2010. One or more completed needs assessments were available on 349 of 526 of the crossover youth and 351 of 601 of the delinquency-only group.
CINA BCity_Archive_final_Corrected-ICPSR.sav: Researchers collected data on Child in Need of Assistance (CINA) cases from court records in Baltimore City, Anne Arundel County, and Baltimore County dating back to 2003. Youth in both the crossover and CINA-only groups met the following criteria: Had a CINA petition filed in the Juvenile Court in Baltimore City, Anne Arundel County, or Baltimore County between 2003 and June 2011, and born between July 1, 1991 and June 30, 1994. Those in the crossover group also met this criterion: Had an intake recorded in the state Department of Juvenile Services (DJS) delinquency database between 2001 (when the database came fully online) and June 2011. A total of 6,034 youth met the CINA/DOB criterion and of these, 1,104 youth met the crossover criteria; included here were 805 crossover youth in Baltimore City, 46 in Anne Arundel County, and 253 in Baltimore County. Although data were obtained from all three counties, due to restricted project resources the comparative analyses were limited to subsamples of 200 crossover youth and 200 CINA-only youth selected at random without replacement from the Baltimore City sample pools.
CY Stakeholder Survey_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav: Snowball sampling was incorporated into the stakeholder interviews, where respondents were invited to recommend other persons with knowledge and experience regarding crossover youth issues who would be appropriate survey recipients. This technique was complemented with contact information obtained from publicly available sources and directly from agencies upon request. Within each agency or institution, respondents were targeted primarily based on available information about the nature of their work. Individuals presumed to have more contact with and knowledge of crossover youth issues were prioritized. When such information was limited, researchers cast a wide net and sought to include a large number of respondents from each stakeholder area in order to reach a diverse sample pool. The sample was designed to have representation from the five study jurisdictions, as well from key state executive agencies and the Judiciary. Given the disproportionately large numbers of youth involved in the local Child in Need of Assistance (CINA) and delinquency systems in Baltimore City, stakeholders in this jurisdiction accounted for a substantial portion of the target pool. The sampling also took into account personnel data with the intent of reaching a diverse group in regard to job type and level, from case workers to managers and agency directors.
Delinquency_Risk_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav: In the delinquency analysis, data systems maintained by courts in the five study jurisdictions were the initial source for identifying the crossover study sample and a group of youth who had delinquency involvement alone. Based on case information recorded in the local court data systems, youth in both study samples met the following initial delinquency criterion: 1. had a delinquency petition filed in the two years between July 1, 2009 and June 30, 2011 in Baltimore City or Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Montgomery, or Prince George's Counties. Crossover youth were further defined as those who also: 2. had a Child in Need of Assistance (CINA) petition filed on their behalf at some point in the past. Due to jurisdictional variations in the court data systems, adjustments to the crossover youth sample were needed to ensure it was representative of the actual proportions of crossover youth found in Baltimore City and the four counties. Specifically, varying dates on which CINA data were reliably complete in various computerized information systems affected the number of crossover youth initially identified in the jurisdiction. To make the local samples equivalent and the aggregated sample representative, crossover youth with CINA petitions prior to 2003 (when the most recent of the local court systems became fully operational) were deleted from the original sample. Identifying information (names and birthdates recorded in the court data) on these crossover youth were then matched to state delinquency system data maintained by DJS. Exact matches were found on 526 of the 598 youth; these youth comprised the final analytic crossover sample for the delinquency analyses. Identifiers of the delinquency-only sample initially identified from the court data were also matched to DJS data. The resulting sample pool was subjected to a random selection process to achieve a final sample of roughly equivalent size that was stratified by jurisdiction to match the proportion of youth found in the court delinquency data.
Needs_Archive_final-ICPSR.sav: Two sources of information (youth risk screening and needs assessments) along with with classification grids used to help inform decision making comprise the Maryland Comprehensive Assessment and Service Planning (MCASP) process. The risk screen was implemented by DJS in February 2009 and by policy is to be employed with all youth at intake with the exception of those whose complaints are limited to traffic or status offenses; are returned on violations of probation or parole; or are cases waived down from adult jurisdiction. The needs assessment was employed later in case processing, with youth who were adjudicated delinquent and placed on probation or committed to DJS and was initiated statewide in February, 2010. One or more completed needs assessments were available on 349 of 526 of the crossover youth and 351 of 601 of the delinquency-only group.
Information on practices in Maryland were obtained through review of public documents as well as interviews with 26 officials in state and local agencies. At the state level, interviews were conducted with four representatives of the Department of Juvenile Services (DJS), one representative of the Social Services Administration of the Department of Human Resources, one representative of the judiciary's Foster Care Court Improvement Project, and a staff member of the judiciary's Administrative Office of the Courts. At the local level, 19 individuals were interviewed, including one from Anne Arundel County, two from Baltimore County, five each from Baltimore City and Prince George's County; and six from Montgomery County. Local interviewees included four executive directors of Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for children, one CASA staff member, three judges, one master, one permanency plan coordinator, two local Department of Social Services (LDSS) directors, two LDSS staff, two DJS regional directors, two local DJS staff, and a delinquency attorney. These data are not available as part of this collection.
CINA BCity_Archive_final_Corrected-ICPSR.sav: Youth in Maryland involved in the state dependency and delinquency systems
CY Stakeholder Survey_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav: Stakeholders involved with crossover youth
Delinquency_Risk_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav: Youth in Maryland involved in the state dependency and delinquency systems
Needs_Archive_final-ICPSR.sav: Youth in Maryland involved in the state dependency and delinquency systems
All data files: Individual
Baltimore City Circuit Court's QUEST Case Management System
Maryland Department of Juvenile Services (DJS) central computerized ASSIST database
Court database maintained by the Maryland Judiciary Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC)
Data systems maintained by the Baltimore City Circuit Court and for Anne Arundel and Baltimore Counties
administrative records data
The data file CINA BCity_Archive_final_Corrected-ICPSR.sav (n=400; 64 variables) includes information related to Child in Need of Assistance (CINA) petitions such as dates and grounds for filing. It also includes variables related to placement such as type of placement, dates, and reasons for placement.
The data file CY Stakeholder Survey_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav (n=164; 302 variables) contains variables related to respondents' views on the extent of use and effectiveness of certain practices, policies and programs involving crossover youth in their jurisdiction, as well as information related to the availability and participation of cross system training for stakeholders to help in handling crossover youth cases. There are also variables regarding respondents' views on the level of attention, knowledge, and resources that different stakeholder groups have on issues involving crossover youth and views on the level of collaboration among key agencies and service sectors, as well as the role of the Judiciary in handling crossover youth cases. Additional variables include respondents' assessments on the barriers that inhibit serving crossover youth in their jurisdiction and basic demographic information including respondent organization, title, and jurisdictional location.
The data file Delinquency_Risk_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav (n=1,127; 62 variables) includes demographics such as age, race, and gender, as well as arrest charges, adjudications, sustained delinquency and several scores such as felony referral, detention, alcohol-drug disruption, and mental health.
The data file Needs_Archive_final-ICPSR.sav (n=700; 67 variables) covers 10 different scored domains, including neighborhood safety, community relationships (with peers and adults outside the family), and the youth's beliefs and opinions regarding delinquency, victims, authority figures and the like (scored separately as "Attitudes" and "Aggression"), as well as the more conventional domains of family, school, employment, substance abuse, and mental health.
CINA BCity_Archive_final_Corrected-ICPSR.sav: Not available.
CY Stakeholder Survey_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav: 33.5 percent
Delinquency_Risk_Archive_final_Corrected_Update2016-ICPSR.sav: Not available.
Needs_Archive_final-ICPSR.sav: Not available.