incentive to send youth away from their families and communities to receive services,56 but it also
contradicted research findings that community-based sanctioning can be less costly and more
effective than institutional care.57
The goal of the Redeploy Illinois initiative is to keep and treat youth in their own communities
rather than committing them to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice.58 To accomplish this
goal, Redeploy sites receive state funds to develop and support a range of services for local youth
at risk of incarceration, including mental health and substance abuse treatment, counseling, life
skills education, family services, and crisis intervention. In return, local jurisdictions must agree
to reduce significantly the number of youth they send to state facilities.59 A study evaluating the
first five years of Redeploy Illinois pilot sites found that youth prison commitments in those
jurisdictions had been cut in half.60 Based on these data, Redeploy Illinois was expanded to other
jurisdictions in the state and assigned a line item in the state’s budget.61 According to a recent
annual report, since its inception Redeploy Illinois has reduced overall commitments to secure
confinement by fifty-three percent and diverted over 1,200 youth away from the Illinois
Department of Juvenile Justice, saving nearly $60 million in unnecessary incarceration costs.62
ii. No Less Restrictive Alternatives
By carefully examining several years of Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice commitment
data, Models for Change advocates were able to determine that judges were committing a
significant number of youth to the Department for nonviolent misdemeanor and felony offenses.
In 2010, for example, over half of all commitments fit into these offense categories.63 Armed with
of state fiscal systems that make it less expensive for local jurisdictions to send youth to state-run secure facilities and
citing Illinois’ Redeploy Illinois program as an experiment in using financial incentives to keep youth in their home
communities rather than sending them to state facilities).
56 Id. at 19.
57 See SHAENA M. FAZAL, SAFELY HOME: REDUCING YOUTH INCARCERATION AND ACHIEVING POSITIVE YOUTH
OUTCOMES FOR HIGH AND COMPLEX NEED YOUTH THROUGH EFFECTIVE COMMUNITY-BASED PROGRAMS, 5 (2014)
(citing research suggesting that community-based alternatives are less expensive and yield better results than secure
confinement); NANCY A. MARION, COMMUNITY CORRECTION IN OHIO: COST SAVINGS AND PROGRAM EFFECTIVENESS
3 (2002) (asserting that community corrections alternatives are substantially less expensive than secure confinement
and appear to result in less recidivism). But see Nancy Marion, Effectiveness of Community-based Correctional
Programs: a Case Study,
82 THE PRISON J. 478, 485-93 (2002) (finding that recidivism rates for individuals who
successfully completed a community corrections program and those who were sentenced to prison were similar). See
also THE POTENTIAL OF COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS TO IMPROVE SAFETY AND REDUCE INCARCERATION, VERA INST.
OF JUSTICE 8–9 (2013) (warning that, as prison commitments decline, the positive results of community corrections
are threatened by growing caseloads, diminishing resources, and a lack of adequate training for corrections personnel).
58 See 730 ILL. COMP. STAT. ANN. 110/16.1(A) (West 2015) (identifying the purpose of the program as
deinstitutionalizing juvenile offenders by establishing a continuum of care in local communities).
59 See Redeploy, supra note 54 (explaining that Redeploy counties are obligated to reduce their commitment rates by
a minimum of twenty-five percent).
60 See Redeploy Illinois Saving Millions and Change Lives, MODELS FOR CHANGE,
http://modelsforchange.net/newsroom/388 (last visited Feb. 26, 2016).
61 REDEPLOY ILLINOIS ANNUAL REPORT 2012-2013, ILL. DEP’T OF HUMAN SERV. (Mar. 26, 2014),
62 Id. Unfortunately, Illinois’ ongoing budget crisis appears to be threatening the success of the Redeploy program.
See Patrick Smith, For Some Illinois Kids, Budget Battle Means Going to Prison Instead of Home, WBEZ
63 See LISA JACOBS & BE TSY CLARK, IMPACT OF ILLINOIS’ STATU TORY CHANGE MANDATING THE LEAST RES TRIC TIVE
ALTERNATIVE STANDARD (2013) (noting that fifty-three percent of commitments to the Department in 2010 were for