Virginia 's Juvenile Justice System Essay

Virginia 's Juvenile Justice System Essay

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Virginia’s Juvenile Justice System has a comprehensive visitation policy for their residents. With a mandatory minimum of two, one hour visits with family per week, family visitation is encouraged. While immediate family members, specifically, spouses, children, parents, siblings, and grandparents are allowed to visit, extended family members, as well as clergy members, are also allowed to visit with approval. While extensive physical contact is not allowed, some still is. For example, embracing or handshakes are allowed at both the beginning and end of visits. Furthermore, enabling young children of residents to sit on their laps allows for increased bonding. For juvenile parents who are incarcerated, this policy may be imperative to not only their child’s development, but also support the resident’s rehabilitation. Children, especially young children, need parental touch to increase trust and bonding. For the residents, being able to closely interact with their children may give them an enticement to do well in their rehabilitation, so they can go home to their family and do well for them. When in-person visitation is not possible, the facility will put forth their best effort to allow for electronic visitation.
The other component of Virginia’s visitation policy that is imperative for residents is the transportation support. SInce there are only two main juvenile correctional facilities in the state, transportation to and from the facility may inhibit families from visiting, especially those farther away or less well off. This recent component includes free transportation to and from the facility for families in several regions of the state, twice per month on Sundays. By including this service, free of charge, families are mu...


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...le to visit juveniles while they are incarcerated. West Virginia’s juvenile centers also allows to visit critically ill family members outside of the facility while under close supervision. This offers juveniles the chance to visit family members who are too sick to travel.
While West Virginia does have many good policies on family visitation, I do not find any information in way of mail or telephone communication. Furthermore, I did not find any information on a policy regarding children of juvenile inmates visiting. With the number of total facilities for juveniles in the state of West Virginia, I am slightly surprised I did not find much more information regarding family visitation policies However, from what I have seen, the state does allow for visitation and does help juveniles to continuously interact with their families, whether in person or electronically.

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