The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ) announced today that it has received 24 new and supplemental awards providing more than $11.2 million in additional funding; the second highest amount in the organization’s history. The NCJFCJ is devoted to ensuring justice and improving outcomes for families and children in courts nationwide.
This year marked the organization’s historic 80th anniversary. The NCJFCJ is the nation’s oldest judicial membership organization, providing judges with ongoing education, training, and technical assistance to make the best possible decisions for children and families in courts.
The $11.2 million in funding will support NCJFCJ projects focused on a multitude of areas that include: domestic violence; child protection and custody; domestic child sex trafficking; child welfare and foster care; military families; tribal and state courts collaboration; juvenile justice; trauma-informed justice; juvenile drug courts; research and data; and more.
One of the highlights for the upcoming year is that the NCJFCJ has received funding from the State Justice Institute for an initiative on military families in juvenile and family courts. In partnership with the Department of Defense, this initiative will allow the NCJFCJ to identify and recruit juvenile and family courts in jurisdictions with significant military presence; create an online national resource center; develop a training curriculum for judges, military command, and key stakeholders; and hold a second summit on military families and state courts for continuing and sustaining these efforts.
“The NCJFCJ is ecstatic to continue its partnership with the State Justice Institute to address issues faced by military families in the juvenile and family court system,” said Judge Anthony (Tony) Capizzi, NCJFCJ president. “Military families face unique challenges including long separations from one another as a result of deployments or relocations, chronic pain, traumatic brain injury and mental health including depression, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder. The NCJFCJ looks forward to working with judges to address the needs of military-connected families, with access to resources like counseling and child care services, while being sensitive to the traumas they may have experienced.”
Another highlight is the continuation of NCJFCJ’s Juvenile Drug Treatment Courts Communities of Practice Program that outlines best practices to ensure positive outcomes and treatment for youth dealing with substance abuse issues, such as the opioid crisis. The NCJFCJ also received funds to continue its Resource Center on Domestic Violence: Child Protection and Custody program. The resource center plans to expand the capacity of the domestic violence field including family violence prevention services grantees and survivors to effectively address the implications of domestic violence in child protection, child support, and custody systems.
“Coming off a successful 80th anniversary year, the funding we receive is critical to continuing our mission to provide judges, courts and related agencies involved with juvenile, family and domestic violence cases with the knowledge and skills to improve the lives of the families and children who seek justice,” said Joey Orduna Hastings, NCJFCJ chief executive officer.
Founded in 1937, the Reno, Nevada-based National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, is the nation’s oldest judicial membership organization and focused on improving the effectiveness of our nation’s juvenile and family courts. A leader in continuing education opportunities, research, and policy development in the field of juvenile and family justice, the 2,000-member organization is unique in providing practice-based resources to jurisdictions and communities nationwide.