Work On Terrebonne Juvenile Justice Center Nearing End

GRAY, LA (AP) — Work on the new $10.3 million Terrebonne Parish Juvenile Justice Center is about a month ahead of schedule, and should be completed by the end of October, says Jeanne Bray, capital projects administrator for the parish.

         The 32-bed center will have a room for each juvenile, The Courier’s Sean Ellis reported. They're arranged in 8-bed units, with at least one staffer for every eight inmates.

         The youths will be students, attending classes and other training year-round so they don't fall behind their peers, officials said.

         Juvenile Detention Center director Joseph Harris said the facility is designed for rehabilitation.

         "By having our kids in a structured facility, we will return our kids to the community in the right way," he said.

         Federal Community Development Block Grants are paying for the center in Gray.

         It's part of a parish government complex that will include the new parish animal shelter and emergency operations center.

         The center is part of a nationwide push to focus on rehabilitating juvenile offenders through education, skills training and alternative programming. The programming, part of the Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative, is to help offenders avoid incarceration through alternative counseling, shelter care and confinement in their homes, officials said.

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