National Recognition of Staff and Youths from the Barbara Allen-Hagen Award
The recognition of the Central Oklahoma Justice Center (COJC) as the 2016 Barbara Allen-Hagen award correction facility winner represented a milestone moment for our agency. One of the daily barometers for understanding the significance of this recognition is the faces of the youth and staff at COJC and how proud they are in winning the Barbara Allen-Hagen Award. Public recognition for the staff that the culture change they have been asked to embrace is recognized and valued.
Being a nationally recognized program brought NBA star Dwight Howard’s D12 Foundation with the Muhammad Ali Center to COJC. Howard wanted to visit Juvenile facilities but not just any facility, facilities that are known to treat kids with respect and offer progressive programming. The I am Second Foundation premiered their movie at COJC about the life of Rap star Gene “No Malice” Thornton AKA “Malicious” and how he turned his life around. We have also received visits and inquiries from juvenile justice departments throughout the country. The dedicated staff have continued to build relationships, engage families and the administration has continued to improve safety measures across the entire facility for the youth we serve.
The award sends a signal to the families of the young men we care for at COJC that their children will be treated with respect and that we value their safety and long term success.
We have already started on winning the second one.
This message from Office of Juvenile Affairs Executive Director Steven Buck is part of a series of interviews with past Barbara Allen-Hagen Award winners. PbS participants may sign in to pbstandards.org to fill out an application. Applications for the 2017 Barbara Allen-Hagen Award will be accepted until March 31, 2017.
This article was originally published on the CJCA blog.