The Sussex County Youth Services Commission's (SCYSC) mission is to advocate for an accessible, responsive, integrated and coordinated system of care for the specific needs of youth and families residing in Sussex County. The target population includes youth with special social and emotional needs and/or juveniles involved or at risk of involvement in the Family Court.
The SCYSC serves as an advisory body appointed by the Freeholder Board for the purpose of cross-systems planning for children and youth (age 0-21 years) with special social/emotional and their families as well as planning for juveniles (0-18 years) who are currently involved or at risk of involvement with the Superior Court - Family Part. It provides a forum where the system of services for children can be developed, reviewed, revised and/or redirected through a collaborative decision making process to assure optimal service in the least restrictive setting.
The SCYSC addresses two major state initiatives that impact youth and families on a local level:
- Department of Human Services' Youth Incentive Program (YIP)
- Juvenile Justice Commission's (JJC) State/Community Partnership Grant Program.
YIP's goal is to improve the system of services for children with special emotional needs, and County Inter-Agency Coordinating Councils (CIACC's) were established to meet this goal at the county level.
The JJC-YSC centralizes authority over juveniles involved with or at risk of involvement with the Superior Court-Family Part. Its goal is to plan, implement and operate a comprehensive program of sanctions and services for juveniles to protect the public, ensure accountability and promote rehabilitation of juvenile offenders.
For both of these initiatives, the County receives funds for programs at the local level to address the needs of children and youth in the target populations.
SCYSC has three standing sub-committees:
- Education Partnership
- Youth Review Team
- Planning Committee
The Education Partnership links the various partners in the Children's System of Care, which serves children with behavioral health needs, developmental disabilities and substance abuse issues (as of June 1, 2013), with local school districts to assist schools in keeping current with changes in the System of Care (https://sites.google.com/site/sceducationpartnership/ )
The Youth Review Team is a multidisciplinary team consisting of agencies and government entities which work with youth involved with Family Court. It meets twice monthly to review each case individually to coordinate services and make recommendations to the Family Court Judge when necessary.
The Planning Committee is responsible for assessing current needs, evaluating strategies to meet those needs, and making funding recommendations to the SCYSC for the allocation of funds to implement the recommended strategies.
The SCYSC's focus is on developing a coordinated system of care for the following County populations, in keeping with current CIACC and YSC standards:
- Any youth whose emotional or psycho-social problems are so pronounced as to cause the youth to have difficulty functioning in the youth's home community and whose behavior causes the youth to come to the attention of a private or public institution such as the local school system, the Family Court, a church, or a community-based agency; and
- As of January, 2013, children and youth with developmental disabilities also became part of the re-organized New Jersey Children's System of Care, and therefore part of the CIAAC's target population; and
- Effective July 1, 2013, those with substance abuse and addiction issues will also come under the Children's System of Care umbrella for services.
- Children/youth who are adjudicated as delinquent; and
- Children/youth who are charged as a delinquent; and
- Children/youth who are involved or at risk of becoming involved with Superior Court-Family Part.
For further information, contact Kristen Turtur, Youth Services Coordinator at (973) 940-5200 x1379 or KTurtur@sussex.nj.us.