A New Building and a New Vision for Juvenile Detention Center

The Delaware County Juvenile Detention Center in Lima
Image via the Daily Times
The Delaware County Juvenile Detention Center in Lima

Delaware County Council is considering demolishing the county’s juvenile detention center and building a new facility, writes Kathleen E. Carey for the Daily Times.

 “There’s an added benefit to truly starting from scratch,” Delaware County Councilman and Juvenile Detention Board of Managers Chair Kevin Madden said. “People have trauma that is associated with the brick and mortar …We don’t want to do this halfway, we want to do this right.”

On Jan. 18, Council approved $40,880 to Spiezel Architectural Group Inc. to plan for demolition and new construction.

The county center lost its state license and was closed by Delaware County Court President Judge Kevin F. Kelly in March 2021 after abuse allegations at the 60-bed center were made.

In the interim, juveniles that need to be detained have been sent to county facilities in Bucks, Montgomery, and as far away as Jefferson County, Ohio, as well as private placements.

David Irizarry, superintendent of the county’s Juvenile Justice Services, said they are shifting the narrative from incarceration to the idea that “you’re a young person going through tough times.”

 The focus will be on prevention, community re-entry, joining the workforce, and mental health, he said.

Read more about possible plans for the Delaware County Juvenile Detention Center at the Daily Times.

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