Youth Homelessness and the Juvenile Justice System: A Roadmap of What to Ask, Offer, and Expect from Referral to Reentry

Coalition for Juvenile JusticeYoung people come in contact with the juvenile justice system through a variety of channels, including schools and through law enforcement. Before making an initial referral, police officers, guidance counselors, educators, and other authority figures should consider possible connections between the young person’s behaviors and homelessness. Youth experiencing homelessness are more likely to miss school, break curfew, and engage in other delinquent acts. In these situations, young people should be referred to age-appropriate housing and services as soon as possible. This brief from the Coalition for Juvenile Justice serves as a resource for teachers, service providers, law enforcement officials, and others working with young people.