Participants from Children’s Home + Aid’s Madison County Redeploy Illinois program and the 20th Judicial Circuit Redeploy Illinois program recently gathered together to express their gratitude to local legislators for their votes to end the Illinois budget crisis. Redeploy Illinois is a court mandated program that serves youth who are being considered for an evaluation or a commitment to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice (IDJJ). In the thank you video message, two participants share why Redeploy matters to them and their future goals.

Included in the FY18 state budget is nearly $8.9 million for the Redeploy Illinois program, which is more than double the amount allocated to Redeploy in FY15. Over the past two years, Redeploy Illinois was devastated by the Illinois budget crisis. In Madison County, where Children’s Home + Aid administers Redeploy, services were cut back, resulting in wait lists for youth. Additionally, more youth were sentenced to the IDJJ in FY17 as compared to FY16 in the 20th Judicial Circuit. Although there are many factors contributing to this (e.g., rising incidents of gun violence and the severity of initial charges), a lack of timely and comprehensive services was a factor. We applaud the legislators who voted to end Illinois’ budget crisis so that we can continue to provide services like Redeploy with certainty throughout Illinois.