Indiana Department of Correction—Division of Youth Services
Treatment Programming & Mental Health Services
After being committed by a judge to the Indiana Department of Correction – Division of Youth Services (DYS), youth are sent to a DYS Intake Unit. Upon arrival to DYS, youth are assessed for individual needs, including criminogenic, mental health, educational, vocational, aftercare, etc. Criminogenic needs are those that lead to youth committing crimes within their home, school, and community. These needs include thoughts and beliefs, coping/self-control skills, peer and/or family relationships, education and/or employment issues, alcohol and/or drug use, and use of free time.
Youth are each assigned a correctional counselor/case manager at their facility who manages their case management plan, which has two parts: First, an Individual Growth Plan (IGP) for setting goals to achieve and programs/services to receive while in the facility. Second, an Individual Aftercare Plan (IAP) for setting up services and other supports for after release.
As part of these plans, youth are then matched to appropriate programs/services in the facility. These programs/services teach youth how to get their needs met in positive ways, support a positive identity, develop/maintain healthy relationships, increase their resiliency, regulate their emotions, and reintegrate with their families. Finally, volunteer - led programs help youth have a sense of community and a desire to contribute to it in a positive way. Overall, DYS youth programs and services prepare youth to re-enter their communities as positive, productive, and law-abiding citizens.
The Behavioral Health Department offers both routine and emergency services to any youth who requires them. These include comprehensive behavioral health screening and evaluation when a youth enters the facility; individual, group, and family therapy when indicated; and medication management services by a psychiatrist. For youth in crisis, daily assessment and monitoring is conducted by behavioral health teams to ensure youth safety and to help youth return to routine daily activities as soon as they are able. The Behavioral Health Department also includes a team of Addiction Recovery specialists who provide substance use assessment and treatment to youth who have struggled with drug or alcohol use in the past.
The Mental Health Department works in close collaboration with the other professionals at the facility, including Custody, Education, and Program Directors/Counselors. This collaboration ensures that youth receive the most thorough care and skill development while they complete the requirements of their assigned programs and services.
Core Cognitive-Behavioral Programs:
Core cognitive-behavior programs help youth develop accountability and positive beliefs. Youth also learn and practice skills that help them reduce their risk of committing crimes in the future. Core treatment education programs are facilitated by correctional counselor/case managers, are offered at all facilities, and include: