New Orleans consistently has one of the highest homicide rates in the country, and arrest rates have shown that juveniles commit a disproportionate share of the violent crime in the city of New Orleans, and throughout Orleans Parish.
In 2011, 1,283 juvenile cases were processed through the Juvenile Court of the Orleans Parish District Attorney’s Office. In a recent year, 208 youths were on probation in the New Orleans area. Juvenile probation officers oversee these juveniles to keep youths from reoffending and help them to become stable members of society.
Requirements to Become a Juvenile Probation Officer in Orleans Parish
To become a juvenile probation officer in Orleans Parish, a bachelor’s degree is required. Applicants who do not have such a degree may be permitted to substitute six years of full-time work experience in any field.
College credit hours can be combined with work experience to substitute for the bachelor’s degree as follows:
- 30-59 credit hours = one year of experience
- 60-89 credit hours = two years of experience
- 90-119 credit hours = three years of experience
- 120+ credit hours = four years of experience
All of the credits to be applied must be from an accredited university or college.
Additional requirements for becoming a juvenile probation officer in Orleans Parish include the following:
- Having a valid Louisiana driver’s license
- Not having any felony or misdemeanor domestic violence convictions
- Being willing and able to carry and use firearms
Training to Become a Juvenile Probation Officer in Orleans Parish
New employees of the Orleans Parish learn how to become juvenile probation officers through learning the curriculum presented in the Corrections Juvenile Services-Agent Academy. These 120 hours teach the trainees to become peace officers of the state of Louisiana. The training involves learning to use firearms safely and proficiently.
Juvenile probation officers in Orleans Parish must undergo forty hours of annual training to continue in the careers. They must also become recertified to use firearms as part of their jobs.
Programs of the Orleans Parish Juvenile Court
The situation of juvenile crime in Orleans Parish is complicated in that many juveniles have returned to the area without their parents following resettlement after Hurricane Katrina. In their efforts to help reform delinquent youth, the Orleans Parish Juvenile Court provides a number of programs:
- Behavioral Health Services
- Parenting Education
- Anger Management group for youths
- Court Coordination/Dual Jurisdiction Procedures
- Coordinates services at all levels: federal, private, state, parish, local
- Drug Court
- Treatment-centered system providing intensive rehabilitative services
- Enhancing Alternatives to Suspensions and Expulsions (EASE)
- Addresses minor infractions based in schools
- Electronic Monitoring Program (EMP)
- Evening Reporting Center (ERC)
- Provides a supervised, educational environment within the community
- Families in Need of Services
- Juvenile Tracking Program
- Youths are contacted after the courts’ specified curfew time
- Orleans Detention Alternative Program (ODAP)
- Youth advocates work with high need youth that are not high risk
- Restitution/Community Service
- Teen Court Program
- Diversion Program for non-violent, first-time offenders who have committed misdemeanor offenses