Running Away from Child Welfare Placements: Justice System Entry Risk.
Sarri, Rosemary C. Stoffregen, Elizabeth. Ryan, Joseph P.
Published: August 2016
Children and Youth Services Review
Vol. 67 , p. 191-197
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A growing body of research indicates that running away from foster care increases the probability of subsequent involvement in the juvenile and/or adult justice system, especially for males. Using administrative data from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, this study examined the characteristics and behavior of a sample of 371 child welfare youth in Wayne County who ran away from foster care with a propensity scored matched sample of youth who did not run away. Youth were followed in administrative records of the MDHHS and justice system for eight years. The correlates of involvement in the juvenile and/or the adult justice systems included age at first child welfare placement, years in placement, number of placements, total length of time in residential care, running away from placement, as well as gender and legal status. Overall, 42% had at least one juvenile and/or adult conviction. Running away from foster care had the largest effect on subsequent justice system contact. (Author abstract)
runaway children; juvenile delinquency; crossover youth; foster children; risk factors; child placement; Residential treatment