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Last updateFri, 23 Aug 2019 12am

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    Thursday, August 22, 2019-3:30:59A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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Probation supervisor: Juvenile offenders need family support

JUVENILE offenders need familial support, said Sylvio Ada, juvenile probation supervisor for the Division of Youth Services.

Sylvio Ada

“You can see great progress when there is familial support. The biggest factors are mom and dad helping their sons or daughters, who are on probation, to not re-offend,” he added in an interview on Wednesday.

Ada said most juvenile offenders who re-offend are either displaced, relocated or separated from their own family. “They are kind of split up,” he added.

Ada said in 2018, of the 192 juveniles arrested, 18 were repeat offenders.

“Those 18 juveniles were on probation in the previous years. Most of the offenses involved robbery, burglary and theft,” he added.

As for cases involving illegal substance, Ada said, “they’re marijuana violations and not hardcore methamphetamine abuse.”

In 2018, the youngest offender was 11 years old, he added.

Ada, who has been working for DYS for 25 years, said “most cases of juvenile offenders — a lot of them — lack direction, and they do not know how to work things out without violating the law. To help them not to re-offend they need family support.”

Ada said the DYS caseload involves children who are from 11 to 17 years old.

“We have a couple that are 21 years old but that was because they were 17 at the time when they were on probation.”

He added, “We should give them an opportunity, and not label them. I just want the community to understand that these are our kids, they are our family, they live in our backyard, and they are our neighbors, nieces and nephews.”