First Advisor

William Feyerherm

Date of Publication

Spring 6-5-2017

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Social Work and Social Research


Social Work




Oregon Youth Authority, Juvenile delinquents -- Services for -- Oregon -- Case studies, Resource allocation, Correctional personnel -- Training of, Correctional personnel -- Attitudes, Administration of justice



Physical Description

1 online resource (vi, 101 pages)


Service provision in both adult and juvenile correctional settings is an understudied phenomenon. Research has evaluated the use of evidence-based practices (EBP) in the treatment of mental health and substance abuse among adults and juveniles. Young, Farrell, Henderson and Taxman (2009) highlight the role of organizational factors including climate and culture, opportunities for staff training, resources, administrator attitudes and interagency collaboration in the application of EBP in correctional settings. The Oregon Youth Authority (OYA) aims to provide services to youth under the guise of EBP. Literature in the field of juvenile justice is limited in scope in areas of organizational factors, which are likely to influence the allocation of mental health treatment to youth. This study addressed this gap in existing research by using thematic analysis of focus group data with 28 OYA employees representing seven facilities. Data on 594 youth is offered to illustrate the variability of youth characteristics in OYA facilities. Facility data reflective of youth management and operations is presented to suggest context for staff observations and perceptions of how youth are identified for treatment. Results indicate staff knowledge about treatment and consistency in training along with frequency of organizational change affect climates in which treatment recommendations are made. Findings from this study will be beneficial to OYA as they attempt to meet the growing needs of mental health populations and address ongoing changes to agency staff, culture and climate. Implications from this study will contribute to literature on treatment service provision in juvenile correctional settings.


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