Special Reports

Kane County Juvenile Justice Center Monitoring Report

The John Howard Association of Illinois had the opportunity to visit the Kane County Juvenile Justice Center (Kane JJC) in June of 2017. Kane JJC, located in St. Charles, Illinois, was built in 1997. This 80-bed juvenile detention facility, which includes one juvenile courtroom and offices for the State’s Attorney and Public Defender, was constructed so that it could be expanded in the future to include 80 additional beds and an additional juvenile courtroom if needed. Currently, Kane JJC houses youth not only from Kane County, but, also through intergovernmental agreements, houses youth from six other counties as well, including DeKalb, DuPage, Kendall, McHenry, Ogle, and Stephenson County.  Read more.  

Next Steps on the Path to Juvenile Justice Reform

May 2017:  JHA's three-part series of reports focus on increasing independent oversight of Illinois’ juvenile detention facilities and juvenile courts, and ensuring youths’ rights to meaningful access to the courts and counsel are met.  Part I of this report looks specifically at the need for independent monitoring of county juvenile detention facilities; Parts II and III are forthcoming.

Gender-Informed Practice Assessment at Logan Correctional Center

November 2016:  From the National Resource Center on Justice Involved Women and the Women's Justice Initiative, this report was authored by Executive Director of CORE Associates, Alyssa Benedict, and the Women’s Justice Initiative Founder & Project Director, Deanne Benos.  It is the result of the comprehensive Gender-Informed Practice Assessment (GIPA) that was conducted at Logan Correctional Center in October 2015, which was the first-ever gender responsive assessment conducted by IDOC at any women’s prison. The Assessment Team included both Gwyn Troyer, Director of JHA's Prison Monitoring Project, and Lynn Cahill-Masching, a former JHA Board Member. 

JHA's Summary and Guide to IDOC's Mental Health Settlement in Rasho

August 2016: This memo distills the complexities of the 32-page Rasho settlement agreement (the Agreement) into more understandable terms and clarifies the timelines for implementing certain changes so that the public has the information needed to understand IDOC’s responsibilities under the Agreement’s terms.  (Revised March 2017)

JHA's Report on Promoting Transparency and Accountability in Juvenile Detention Facilities: Depke Complex

August 2016:  This report follows JHA's visit to the Depke Juvenile Complex (Depke) in Lake County, which houses both the Hulse Juvenile Detention Center and a residential treatment facility for youth.  This visit was made on May 17, 2016 at the request of juvenile justice administrators.

JHA Briefing on 17-year-olds in Illinois' Adult Prison

February 2016:  Youth, or individuals under the age of 18, may still be tried as adults in Illinois. Youth with adult sentences can be housed in Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) custody once they turn 17, including both youth entering from county custody on new adult sentences or those transferred from Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice (IDJJ) facilities.  Over the past few years, the number of 17-year-olds in IDOC has declined significantly.  As of February 2016, there were 13 male 17-year-olds housed in IDOC facilities. While these numbers reflect a reduction of more than fifty percent over prior years, IDOC must continue to be prepared to meet the demand of housing this special population, particularly given that these numbers will continue to fluctuate unpredictably absent legislative action or other universal statewide agreement between custodial entities to house youth elsewhere prior to their 18th birthdays.

Changing Directions: A Roadmap for Reforming Illinois' Prison System

October 2014:  After decades of using incarceration as the country’s primary response to crime, leading Republicans and Democrats are embracing safe, fair, and cost-effective prison reform. As Illinois prepares to elect its next governor, voters should ask the candidates where they stand on this issue and what their vision and goals are for the state’s crowded and under-resourced $1.3 billion prison system.

In Their Own Words: Young People’s Experiences in the Criminal Justice System and Their Perceptions of Its Legitimacy Moving Beyond Transition

September 2014:  A provocative report which chronicles six young serious offenders’ journey through Illinois’ criminal justice system, from arrest to incarceration.

Reforming Illinois' Prison System from the Inside Out

August 2013:  A blueprint for the implementation of risk asset needs assessment and system change in the Illinois Department of Corrections.

Moving Beyond Transition: Ten Findings and Recommendations on the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice

May 2013:  This report offers ten findings and recommendations based on JHA's monitoring of the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice in 2012-13.

Unasked Questions, Unintended Consequences: Fifteen Findings and Recommendations on Illinois' Prison Healthcare System

September 2012:  This report offers 15 findings and recommendations on how Illinois can improve its prison healthcare system based on JHA’s analysis of healthcare in 12 diverse correctional facilities, which together embody the state of healthcare in the Illinois prison system.


Note:  To view older Special Reports from JHA, please visit our archive.