Page images

This prescription can be filled only if the correctional system has the knowledge, funds, and manpower to do a rehabilitative job and, whenever possible, do it without removing the delinquent from his home community. Moreover, if the correctional system is to be a last resort there must be a full development of health, welfare, educational, and manpower systems. Without such development desperation may drive some youngsters to serious delinquency. Without such development, the training school may be the only resource available for some youngsters.

Although one could hardly expect the revitalization of all social facilities through the one modest anti-delinquency bill under discussion, the Bill, at least, makes an approach that seeks to achieve balance on development of social resources. Its major lack is an address to the perennial problem of manpower. The earlier Act of 1961 provided some funds for training. The omission of any reference to this crucial problem in the current Bill may be due to the fact that the National Commission on Correctional Manpower will soon be making recommendations.

When manpower proposals are made they will undoubtedly give attention to graduate, undergraduate, and inservice training. Full attention should also be given to the potential impact of the so-called New Careers Movement on the Correctional field. This movement has highlighted the contribution that persons heretofore defined as consumers of service can make as purveyors of service. This contribution is not fully realized when we view these new partners as requiring a kind of inservice training that simply co-opts the nonprofessional into the professional mold. The maximum contribution is derived by creating the conditions of an encounter whereby there is a blurring of boundaries between reformer and those to be reformed.

The watchwords of our time are involvement and integration. I refer here not merely to integration of persons but integration of ideas and social systems. Marshall McLuhan who, I believe, comes closer than any other social philosopher to perceiving the times in which we now live, views the thirst for integration as reflective of the development of the computer which finally makes it possible to simultaneously bring to bear upon a problem diverse bodies of knowledge. He views the nature of mass media, most particularly television, as fostering development of the thirst for involvement.

McLuhan sees the artist as reflective of his times and hence out of step with most of us who are stuck in Banana Land. Pop art, participatory sculpture, op-art, the happening, and the “environment" seem to bear out McLuhan's notion emphasizing as they do the blurring of the line between art and life, between spectator and object. McLuhan sees the delinquent as close to the artist insofar as he reacts to the now time. Here there is a clue to the almost unexplored possibility for cultural arts program as a means of incorporating the delinquent in social participation without merely taming him into conformity.

In the measure before Congress which I have chosen to use as a framework for this discussion involvement and integration is made possible not merely by employment of the delinquent in the helping force but by a provision which holds that the Nation's youths must be given an opportunity to be involved in efforts designed to assist them. In implementing this provision we can, I hope, move away from the kind of youth involvement which has characterized some of our efforts in the past whereby a few sample “youths” are included in adult councils to "represent" youths' views. We can move toward an involvement that means Fouth conducted programs, an exchange of views across generational lines, and youth employment in program. The Congressional mandate should not be viewed as a loop hole through which those who have public responsibility for providing answers to social questions can evade this responsibility. It should be viewed as a declaration that in our age the planners and the "planned for” can never again be two isolated entities.

McLuhan has said that youth today wants “roles not goals” and this has been borne out by some of our experience at Mobilization for Youth. Planned recreation or group activities of a delinquent or non-delinquent nature has diminished in importance. Young people can be and are involved in social action, in teaching one another, in job finding, and in family building.

The research and technical assistance program envisioned in the proposed Juvenile Delinquency Prevention Act must be conceptualized in time with our times. While the need for a typology of delinquents remains crucial since the label delinquent is meaningless as a diagnostic entity, the typology today may be quite different than those proposed just a decade ago. Suburban delinquency may be a

rejection of suburban norms best viewed as a modification of the life of the Hippies. Ghetto delinquency is more closely allied to aspirations for full social participation than was true in 1955.

For those who would plan an antidelinquency program in the United States in 1967 there is a message from the Negro American that says that delinquency is in part a reaction to the consequences of discrimination still rife in our society. There is a message from the Haight-Ashbury section of San Francisco. Here are young people who in some ways are trying to unify behavior and belief. According to an article in a recent issue of the magazine of the Sunday Times, old-time residents are not entirely opposed to the in-migration of the Hippies since “they'd rather have a flower put under their nose than a knife in their ribs." There is a message from young people of the young who elect to live on near nothing in urban ghettos to act on belief. There is a lesson in the success of both VISTA and the Peace Corps. These are all parts of a youth movement that extends around the world which must be heard and respected.

Essentially the message is that the drive to combat delinquency can no longer be merely an effort to tame the hostile youngster into social submission. The youth of today have legitimate question about the nature of the dominant society. We must hear those questions and if we have no answers at least be ready to be involved with the delinquent in the search for better answers.

We must begin by trying to rise above our vested interests in particular organizations, professional forms, and habitual patterns of thinking. Only by giving freely of our experience and hearing one another can we deepen our own insights and heighten our abilities to give the leadership demanded of us. Out of such an encounter we can develop fresh answers for our problems and move forward to the development of a society in which there is maximum freedom for creative de velopment of all individuals.

H.B. 12120

It is difficult for me to address myself to both bills before this committee at one time since almost all the strong points in S. 1248 are, in my estimation, converted into weak points in H.R. 12120.

The provision for planning which is an absolute necessity as a prelude to thoughtful action is simply not present in H.R. 12120. Without proper plans there is grave danger that any funds made available will be sopped up by the needs of existing State correctional systems which all too often merely serve the purpose of removing delinquents and young offenders from the community for varying periods of time.

H.R. 12120, under its Title I, mandates that funds for law enforcement agencies be spent on delinquents only whereas S. 1248 enables law enforcement agencies and organizations to help youngsters before they get the delinquent label. By its insistence that a youth be delinquent before help is extended under H.R. 12120, the bill may do much mischief. Under the loosely drawn definitions of delinquency that pertain in our States, there would be a temptation to bring a youngster into the correctional system in order that he get the benefits provided in H.R. 12120, The labelling of the youngster as delinquent may do him more harm than any of the good that may be done by the rehabilitative programs.

Title I, Part D of H.R. 12120 does allow funds for preventative services. But these funds are not available to the law enforcement agencies which often have the best chance of doing prevention. We are all familiar with the awesome responsibility of the police officer on the street who must decide whether a youngster will be made an official statistic or given help without the delinquent label. By limiting preventative funds to non-law enforcement agencies, H.R. 12120 reduces the potential development of services.

A most serious omission in H.R. 12120 is the absence of the provision for appropriate participation by youth. Although there are many problems associated with youth participation it is the most promising instrument for the development of a specific preventative of delinquency. Youngsters today are reaching for involvement. Commendably, they do not want to have things done to them or for them. They want a share in shaping their destiny. Of all the programs which exist in the Lower East Side, where I work, the most effective are those where there is a heavy emphasis on young people doing things for themselves and not being the recipients of services instituted and developed by adults. I urge you to retain provision for appropriate participation in any bill you report out.

H.R. 12120 has one feature, which I consider superior to its sister bill, S. 1248, and that is Title II, which provides for training. Shortage of manpower is a major obstacle toward improvement of program. I would like to see this Title expanded. It should make specific reference to the development of new careers in delinquency prevention and treatment for persons from poverty neighborhoods with limited formal education. Persons who have been close to delinquency themselves can often be the most effective helping agents for delinquents.

H.R. 12120 has, as you know, no provision for research, demonstration, technical assistance, or information. I don't think we can afford any social programs in America that do not have some research component. In a report prepared for Secretary Gardner, Dr. Leonard Cottrell and Stanton Wheeler of the Russell Sage Foundation, state that “we do not have enough veritied knowledge about delinquency to specify the ways in which a moderate degree of reduction (of delinquency) can be achieved.” If this is the case, and it is the case, how can we possibly talk about spending $25 million a year without a cent for the development of firm knowledge.

H.R. 12120 places great emphasis on funds flowing through the States with block grants being made to the States. While this form of administration is often preferable, it is not the method of choice in respect to delinquency. In most States the State agency concerned with delinquency is mainly concerned with institutionalization. Police, courts, and prevention are the business of localities. The apparatus for dealing with delinquency is in most instances—and this has been documented by the President's Committee on Law Enforcement-extremely antiquated. If funds were to flow in the way proposed by this bill, they would end up most often in merely doing more of the same. We need a bill which puts money directly into those cities which are willing and able to develop plans for community-based prevention and treatment of delinquency with ample youth participation.

Lastly, I must make reference to the provision in H.R. 12120 which prohibits funds from flowing to an organization which receives any funds from OEO. To me, this provision is irrelevant. Funds should flow to those agencies which are able to demonstrate that they can do the job. It is beyond belief that an agency and the young people involved would be penalized because they were receiving other funds from a bonafide part of our Federal government. I simply could not find terms with which to explain this provision to the young people who are involved in the Mobilization program.

You have before you two bills. One, S. 1248, with many merits; the other, H.R. 12120, with many deficiencies. Out of them I believe a bill can be drafted that will enable us to move forward in combating juvenile delinquency.

Senator CLARK. The next witness is William J. Haskins, associate director of the Washington bureau of the National Urban League.

Mr. Haskins, we are happy, indeed, to have you with us. I know the National Urban League in general and the Washington Bureau in particular are keenly interested in this entire area of combating juvenile delinquency. Mr. Haskins, if you are not in a hurry to get away, I understand that Professor Vorenberg, who was to be our first witness but was not able to be here at 10 o'clock, has an appointment which he would like to keep. Therefore, I wonder if you would mind standing aside for a little while?

I would greatly appreciate your courtesy:
Mr. Vorenberg, we will be happy to hear from you now.
(Discussion off the record.)

Senator CLARK. We did not get your statement in time for me to read it, but I see it is rather short and if you will indulge me for just a couple of minutes, I shall read it now and then proceed.

I ask to have Professor Vorenberg's statement printed in full in the record at the conclusion of his testimony. It parallels so nearly my own views that I do not know that there is much to be gained by an elaborate discussion.

I would ask, since your comments deal exclusively with the House bill, what your views are on the Senate bill, which is the administration bill? Have you had a chance to study that?




Mr. VORENBERG. Yes, I think I share Mr. Beck's view, with the one exception he noted on training. The administration's bill is far preferable. I think I would like to say, since I did limit the prepared statement to certain specific points on the

Senator CLARK. I would like to turn you loose to say anything you wish. Please do so.

Mr. VORENBERG. I have just a few introductory comments, if I may. First, I think that if one looks at the House bill and particularly at the kind of changes that were made, that were reflected in that bill, there is a kind of Alice in Wonderland quality to it. It seems to me to reflect so little real understanding of the problems of meeting delinquency that its passage in that form, I think, would be taken by many of those who work in this field to raise serious doubts as to the Congress' sincere attention to really try to deal with this problem. I think in its present form, it is a simply terrible bill. Whether it is better to have nothing than that bill, I think, is a closer question, because the

Senator CLARK. That is a problem we have to face in conference because we are not going to pass the House bill, I can assure you of that.

Mr. VORENBERG. I think simply the need to get some money into this field is so desperate that I think I would be slow to say that no bill is better than this bill. Since the Crime Commission's report goes into this subject in some detail, I would like to add, build on that in one respect. That is to say, that since the Commission's report was prepared, I have spent a good deal of time in various parts of the country talking to the people at the State and local level who are now

Senator CLARK. Excuse me for interrupting. I want to be sure our semantics are accurate. When you speak of the Crime Commission, I take it you mean the President's Commission on Law Enforcement and the Administration of Justice?

Mr. VORENBERG. That is correct.

Senator CLARK. I have the task force report on juvenile delinquency and crime in front of me. You were the executive director?

Mr. VORENBERG. I was executive director of that Commission.

Senator CLARK. Are you in sympathy with the recommendation in that task force report?

Mr. VORENBERG. Absolutely.
Senator CLARK. Go ahead.

Mr. VORENBERG. As I have traveled around the country in the last few months, talking to people about the problem of implementing the Crime Commission's recommendations, I have been struck with the extent to which States and particularly cities are, in a sense, paralyzed in trying to develop change. To some extent the paralysis is just built into the differences of opinion, bureaucratic struggles within the city or within the State as to who should be doing what.

Senator CLARK. And between the city and the State.

Mr. VORENRERG. To some extent. Less, I think, than I had expected, but to a far greater extent, the problem really is that nobody really has a sense in most places as to what they ought to be doing.

There is a general sense that you ought to be against crime and you ought to be against juvenile delinquency, you ought to be doing something, but I think no sense as to what we should be doing and a real sense of desperation. Even if you knew what you were doing, there is no money around to do it with. That is why I was troubled by what I took to be Senator Javits' interpretation of this bill in the question he put to Mr. Beck, in which he characterized it as a research and demonstration bill.

Senator CLARK. That is what it started out to be in 1961, you know. It has gone through my mind that if in 6 years we have not researched and demonstrated enough to have an on-going program, what is the use of research and demonstration? On the other hand, personally, I share the confusion which you just indicated as to what is the best thing to do.

Mr. VORENBERG. It seems to me we have to move in two direction at once in this area. One is we have to continue the process of search. I think that the 1961 bill did give us some additional knowledge, work that has been done by a number of people both before and particularly since that time, has given us some lines to go on.

I think the Crime Commission's recommendations, which are fairly specific in this area and which have been endorsed almost without dissent by all of the experts in this field, have given us some direction, so I agree with you, we do know something now; we would have a basis to proceed on. I think it would be totally unjustifiable at this point to launch another program that is solely research. But I think there ought to be a research component built into it, and I think we are seriously slighting generations that are going to come on behind us if we pass major legislation without that kind of research component.

Senator CLARK. Would you differentiate between research and planning in this area?

Mr. VORENBERG. To me, planning is simply the first step of putting a project into effect. I think we really know enough now that we can start doing some specific things. Perhaps the most important single proposal the Crime Commission made was the proposal to establish youth services bureaus in each large city. It would take kids that are on the margins of trouble but have not become confirmed delinquents, would take them from the police, would take from the juvenile courts. Instead of processing them through the criminal justice system, which is now doing most of them more harm than good, it would try to go to bat for them and get them services from the social agencies in the community. Most of the social agencies now put them down at the bottom of the barrel.

That is just one specific proposal. It is a proposal that many cities are today prepared to put into effect. I have talked to mayors, to delinquency officials in many cities who would be ready if the funds were available to try that proposal out.

Senator CLARK. Are you familiar with the youth study center in Philadelphia and the work of Dr. Preston Sharpe?

Mr. VORENBERG. I know Dr. Sharpe and I know of the center, but I do not know it

Senator Clark. Is that generally the kind of institution you have in mind if it had adequate physical facilities and adequate appropriation!

[blocks in formation]
« PreviousContinue »