Lancaster County Participates in System Assessment - Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative

Lancaster County Participates in System Assessment - Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative

Friday, February 23, 2018

Lancaster County Joins Three Nebraska JDAI Sites

Lancaster County recently underwent a system assessment through the Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative (JDAI) with the assistance of representatives through the Annie E. Casey Foundation.  The system assessment gathers both qualitative and quantitative data into a report for system stakeholders to review and develop their action steps for continued Juvenile Justice Reform.

Lancaster County recently joined as the fourth JDAI site in Nebraska. Established JDAI sites include Douglas County(2011), Sarpy County (2012), Otoe County (2016).


About JDAI

The Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative is a national program that was designed with the vision that all youth involved in the juvenile justice system have opportunities to develop into healthy, productive adults. After more than two decades of innovation and replication, JDAI is one of the nation's most effective, influential, and widespread juvenile justice system reform initiatives. This year the Initiative celebrates 25 years of success.

The initiative was born in the late 90’s with the understanding the juvenile justice system in the United States was broken and that youth achieve better outcomes when they are not incarcerated.  Core strategies grew from the experiences of jurisdictions around the country creating a fundamental framework for juvenile justice system improvement. 

The Initiative promotes changes to policies, practices, and programs to reduce reliance on secure confinement, improve public safety, reduce racial disparities and bias, save taxpayer dollars, and stimulate overall juvenile justice reforms.  The Initiative has demonstrated that community safety can be maintained while utilizing alternatives to youth confinement.


Resources through the Administrative Office of the Courts and Probation

In 2012 the Administrative Office of Probation took a lead role in supporting the JDAI efforts. If your community is interested in further information, visit JDAI Connect for information on a national level: or contact Michele Lueders at  


Photo: Lancaster County Separate Juvenile Court Judges meeting with Annie E. Casey Representatives on February 8, 2018.