New juvenile justice center in San Bernardino aims to break cycle of recidivism

Families of 400 to 900 juveniles per year will soon get counseling and supportive services designed to break the cycle of recidivism in an 11,375-square-foot facility that celebrated its grand opening in San Bernardino Thursday, June 3.

Many times, multiple generations of the same family will run into trouble with the law, and the facility aims to give young people and their families the tools to stop that, said Curt Hagman, chairman of the county Board of Supervisors.


The office, part of the Juvenile Justice Program run by San Bernardino County’s Department of Behavioral Health, is on Gilbert Street. The location — near the San Bernardino Children’s Assessment Center, Juvenile Court, Probation Office, and several schools — will help staff members conduct community outreach and serve those who need it, the news release states.

It’s also in one of 57 Qualified Opportunity Zone tracts in the country, a designation meaning the area has been rated as among the most economically distressed.

The conditions in the area mean it has among the lowest opportunities for children, explaining their need for this type of intervention — and making the area itself eligible for extra help.

Under legislation sponsored by Sen. Tim Scott, R-South Carolina, and Sen. Corey Booker, D-New Jersey, businesses who invest in Qualified Opportunity Zones receive tax benefits — which in this case went to RevOZ Capital, which partnered with the county to build the facility.

That’s an example of the success the zones can bring, said Scott, who attended and spoke at the event Thursday.

“Already millions of Americans have seen and benefited from the incredible potential of Opportunity Zones across the nation,” Scott said in a news release. “I am amazed by the great work being done here at the San Bernardino Medical Center and look forward to hearing the success stories that come from their efforts.”

The facility will serve families in and out of custody or who have a mental illness.

The project was highlighted as a national best practice in a May 2020 report by the White House Opportunity and Revitalization Council, which included several case studies of Opportunity Zone investments across the country.


Full article here.