Intake & Pre-adjudication Services

The DJS Intake and Pre-Adjudication Services unit oversees statewide Intake Operations. The Intake unit is responsible for managing and monitoring a uniform statewide approach for the review of intake complaints. They ensure that appropriate assessments and reviews are conducted and service referrals are made to promote the best interest of the child and public safety. Youth enter the system at the point of intake. At this stage, DJS intake officers receive complaints from persons or agencies (e.g., private citizens, schools, victims, or law enforcement agencies) and assess whether the juvenile court has jurisdiction and whether judicial action is warranted.

Intake Case Managers conduct Intake Conferences utilizing the Intake Decision Tool which identifies a youth's risk of recidivism, strengths, and service needs. This new tool, implemented in July 2020, is intended to ensure fair and equitable decisions that are developmentally appropriate, culturally proficient, and tailored to the risks, needs, and strengths of youth. Throughout the intake process, the focus is on positive youth development (recognizing and building on the strengths and assets of youth) and family engagement (actively involving the youth and family voice in all aspects of case planning) – both of which promote successful outcomes. Supported by the tool, the Department aims to divert youth from court involvement when possible and refer the youth and family to services when needed, including high-risk youth who may be safely supervised by DJS with interventions that reduce the risk of recidivism.

Intake Case Managers supervise DJS-involved youth who have been placed on informal (or pre-court) supervision. When appropriate, the youth can be diverted from formal court action while also holding the youth accountable for harm to victims and communities. Pre-Court Supervision seeks to increase access to services and supports that address risk and needs and increase opportunities for positive outcomes in school, the workforce, and the community while engaging youth and families in services that meet their needs to ultimately reduce the likelihood of reoffending.​​