On Oct. 15th 2013, The Juvenile Diversion Network testified before the Child and Family Law committee on House Bill 572 calling for a Study Commission to study public-private partnerships for the treatment of children.
While Grafton County Attorney Lara Saffo spoke primarily on the effectiveness of NH’s Restorative Justice Practices. Nicole Rodler, NH Juvenile Diversion Network Chair, spoke to effectiveness of diversion programs in the state. Rodler outlined the needs and support that NH’s Traditional and Restorative Diversion sites seek from the State. Rodler further outlined that these sites have been facing financial strain since State Incentive funds disappeared, with many programs being forced to scale back services or close their doors leaving gaps in access to diversion programs across the state.
By providing “traditional” or “restorative justice” diversion, NH’s network sites provide their communities with sustainable, alternative solutions, to the more expensive adjudication route. Rodler further highlighted disproportionate service gaps, when programs run by municipal entities cannot offer Diversion to youth living outside the program jurisdiction. By offering first-time or low risk offenders accountability through Diversion, instead of court, Rodler said, NH’s communities save taxpayer dollars, gain true solutions and lower crime recidivism, while offering invaluable educational programming to NH’s most in need children.