With fewer youth detained, Multi-County Juvenile Attention System looks to downsize

(Canton, Ohio) – Reports indicate Multi-County is looking to downsize as the number of juveniles in the system continues to decline.

Multi-County (MCJAS) provides detention and rehabilitation services to the Juvenile Courts of five counties in northeast Ohio. Counties include Carroll, Columbiana, Stark, Tuscarawas, and Wayne. MCJAS treats juvenile, delinquent offenders and offers services to their families. Officials explain the services are offered “in such a manner as to strengthen both the youth and their family and strive to reduce the likelihood of youth re-entering the criminal justice system.”

The system was founded in 1970 and employs about 150 people at four detention facilities in Stark, Columbiana, Wayne, and Tuscarawas counties. The system also has a state-funded 24-bed facility on Faircrest Street SW in Canton Township for felony juvenile offenders. Additionally, the system has two less-restrictive group home wings with 18 beds at Faircrest and a 10-bed group home for girls in New Philadelphia.

The Canton Repository reported the system’s average daily population of juvenile youths is just over half of its 141-bed capacity. Due to the reduction in usage, in October, MCJAS Board of Trustees closed a 16-bed Residential Center in Rogers, which often housed 8-10 children, as well as a nine-bed Residential Treatment Center wing, of three at its campus on Faircrest.

The system also eliminated around 15 positions but offered jobs elsewhere in the system to affected employees. The board has approved a 2019 budget and expects a reduction in spending by $866,470, to $10.9 million.

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