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Juvenile Court Programs

Adolescent Drug and Alcohol Prevention and Treatment Program (ADAPT)

Vivian Roberts, MSW
Family Therapist
(770) 528-2297

ADAPT is a comprehensive substance abuse treatment and education program which provides intervention to the court-involved youth and their parents/guardians. ADAPT includes facilitation of Alcohol and Drug Assessment for adolescents to evaluate and identify treatment level requirements, provides referrals and connection to supplemental community services and to in-house treatment programs. ADAPT utilizes evidence-based protocols including Motivational Enhancement Therapy, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and the SUPER STOP! (R) Program, in group settings, to meet the treatment needs of mild and moderate substance use disordered youth. In addition, ADAPT includes a dynamic parenting education program named PASS (Parenting Adolescents Strategies and Support) to provide education and support to the parents/guardians in order to improve family dynamics in addressing youth substance use.

Family Treatment Court (FTC)

Emma Walton, LMSW
Drug Court Coordinator
(770) 528-3342

The Cobb County Family Treatment Court Program (FTC) is an accountability court within the Juvenile Court of Cobb County. FTC is a voluntary program for parents who have lost custody of their children due to parental substance use disorders, have an active dependency case and who need help to enter and complete treatment. FTC manages and monitors the parents’ progress through a five (5) phase program over a minimum of 19 months. The FTC staff works in collaboration with treatment providers, the Department of Family and Children Services and the Court to expedite the reunification process and to achieve permanency of the family. The parents receive treatment services through Highland Rivers Behavioral Health treatment programs or the Men’s Extension. In addition, the families receive intensive treatment services provided by FTC including individual, family, couples, group and play therapy. Many evidence-based treatment programs are utilized including SafeCare Parenting, Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Substance Use and Trauma-Focused CBT. The FTC program is free of cost to participants.

The FTC Team consists of a Presiding Judge, a Drug Court Coordinator, a Case Manager, a Parent Attorney, a Guardian Ad Litem, two DFCS Caseworkers, multiple Contract Therapists, multiple Treatment Providers, Special Advocate Attorney General, WorkSource Cobb Representative and a CASA coordinator.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Cobb County FTC Program is to secure and ensure safe, stable and reunified families. Drug-free and healthy families are created and strengthened through intensive therapy and treatment in collaboration with the Highland Rivers Behavioral Health, the Department of Family and Children Services and other community providers.

Juvenile Drug Treatment Court (JDTC)

Kathy Gorrell
Drug Court Coordinator
(770) 528-2249

The Mission of the Cobb County Juvenile Drug Treatment Court is to utilize judicial and community-based interventions, for the treatment of high-risk youth offenders, with documented substance abuse disorders. These services help create safer communities by strengthening families, reducing crime, and developing productive citizens.

Cobb Juvenile Drug Treatment Court (JDTC) began in 2002. This is our most intensive level of drug and alcohol treatment and supervision for juveniles. Juvenile Drug Treatment Court is a 12-month, 5-phase program that consists of assessments and evaluations, Individual/Family therapy, group therapy, psycho-educational groups, surveillance, educational assistance, random drug screens, and frequent hearings with the Drug Treatment Court Judge. The Drug Treatment Court Team members include, but are not limited to, the following roles: Judge, Coordinator, Child Advocate, Assistant District Attorney, School Liaison Case Manager, Senior Probation Officer, Surveillance Officer, and Treatment Provider(s). Cobb JDTC has served hundreds of children and their families over the previous 20 years.

Mediation

Mediation is considered (by the Court) for all first-time status offenses and for first-time misdemeanors where the victim is willing to participate. The Court also uses mediation to settle portions of cases and to settle some restitution issues.

Mediation gives the complainant/victim and the offender an opportunity to meet, talk about the offense, express concerns, and negotiate a mutually amiable agreement. It improves the capacity of the juvenile justice system to aid victims who have been negatively affected by the behavior of the young offender. It also provides an opportunity for youth to understand and acknowledge how their actions have adversely affected the community, school environment, consumer market, etc. The mediation conference is informal, confidential, and non-adversarial. The goal is to have both the complainant/victim and the offender reach a resolution that addresses all of their concerns. Mediation conferences are conducted by mediators who have completed a rigorous schedule of training, observations, and certification. They are professionals and students within the community.

The Cobb Juvenile Court has been chosen by the Georgia Supreme Court to participate in a model mediation program to investigate the efficacy of mediation in child dependency cases. In each of these cases specially trained mediators are provided by the state to assist the parties to reach an agreement regarding the best way to deal with deficiencies in child care that have brought the child dependency accusations to the Court. The parties may craft an agreement that defines the problems and the solutions to correct them so that the child may find his or her way to a safe, loving and permanent home. Research shows that when people are a part of the process of defining these issues and creating agreeable solutions to them, they tend to comply with the agreements more exactly than they comply with a Court order from a judge. There is no charge to the participants for mediation of child dependency complaints. Access to the program is through the judges or through the Mediation Coordinator.

Gang Suppression Program (GSP)

Sharon Mashburn 
Probation Supervisor - Gang Suppression Program 
(770) 528-1094

The Gang Suppression Program (GSP) was established in Cobb County Juvenile Court in January 1999. The program supervises approximately 40 probationers for 2015 who have been identified or who are suspected to be involved in gang activities. This may also include youth that have close contact with individuals who are identified or suspected to be involved in gang activities. GSP provides daily supervision in the community, school and home. Each probationer is individually assessed to determine his or her level of gang involvement.

In 2015, the Gang Suppression Program (GSP) continued its efforts to supervise juvenile probationers with gang issues. The caseloads, which currently are supervised by three Probation Specialists consists of approximately 15-25 probationers. This size case load allows Probation Officers to maximum their effectiveness in dealing with these difficult cases.

The Gang Suppression Program works cooperatively with the Cobb County Schools and Marietta City Schools Campus Security Officers. They gather and share gang intelligence information to suppress any ongoing gang activities on and off school campuses. In addition, Gang Suppression Specialists work with local law enforcement in an effort to suppress gang activity by participating in county gang sweeps that involve making evening contacts with gang members.

The Gang Suppression Program is actively involved in collecting and monitoring gang intelligence information. The information on gang activity will be used in sharing gang intelligence information with other law enforcement agencies in an effort to reduce gang activities. The Cobb Police gang unit, CAGE, lead monthly gang intelligence meetings and the GSP probation officers participate in those meetings.

Juvenile Justice Incentive Grant

Jennifer Reyes
Program Coordinator
(770) 528-3346

Thinking for a Change

Thinking for a Change (T4C) is an evidence-based, integrated cognitive-behavioral program that Juvenile Court began offering its youth in April of 2014. T4C has three main components: The skill of Cognitive Self-Change, Social Skills and Problem Solving Skills. Through these components, T4C teaches participants how to create change in their thinking and behavior in order to make better decisions in their daily lives. This is developed through role-play activities, demonstrations, and homework exercises.

Aggression Replacement Training

Aggression Replacement Training® (ART) is a research-based; proven effective program that Juvenile Court began offering its youth in April of 2014. ART’s main goal is to reduce aggression and violence among youths through three main components: Social Skills, Moral Reasoning, and the Anger Control Chain. Through these components, we teach youth how to control their angry impulses through recognizing perspectives other than their own, and recognizing when they are angry. These components are developed through role-play activities, demonstrations, and homework exercises.

Brief Strategic Family Therapy

Brief Strategic Family Therapy™(BSFT®) is an evidence-based, culturally sensitive family intervention which reduces delinquency and drug use in adolescents and strengthens the family unit. Juvenile Court introduced the BSFT model to families in October of 2015. It is a structured, problem-focused, directive, and practical approach to the treatment of conduct problems, associations with antisocial peers, early drug use and the accompanying maladaptive family interactions (relations), and other recognized youth risk factors.