Suffredin- An Advocate for All of Us  

Forest Preserves
Public Safety
Cook County Budget
Forest Pres. Budget
Property Tax Appeal
Health & Hospitals
Land Bank Authority
Policy Resolutions
Unsung Heroine


  Office phone numbers:  

The Cook County Code of Ordinances are the current laws of Cook County.


Search current and proposed Cook County Legislation in Larry's exclusive legislative library.

  Cook County is the second most populous county in the nation. It is the 19th largest government in the U.S.

Juvenile detention center to get review

Monday, November 07, 2005
Chicago Sun-Times
by ANNIE SWEENEY Crime Reporter

Teams of local experts will go inside the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center in coming weeks to see how the youth jail measures up against some of the toughest national standards.

Several volunteers, who work inside and outside the juvenile justice system, were trained last week by attorneys from the Youth Law Center, a national firm that focuses on juvenile justice, about how to assess conditions inside the center at 1100 S. Hamilton.

The assessments are part of a comprehensive review organized by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, which contacted the county after recent reports of trouble at the center.

The Chicago Sun-Times has reported criminal background checks were ordered after officials discovered some employees had felony backgrounds, including one who had attempted-murder charges filed against him. More recently, the paper reported about the practice of staff allegedly allowing residents to fight in specially designated rooms.

Agreement with ACLU

But complaints about the center, for years known as the Audy Home, are not new.

Back in 1998, the John Howard Association, a prison reform group, issued a long report about conditions inside the center, and the following year, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit on behalf of several residents. Allegations in the suit ranged from physical assaults by staff to substandard health care.

An agreement was reached between the ACLU and the county, but ACLU officials have expressed concern in recent months that conditions have not really improved.

Officials from the county and the Casey Foundation said they believe this time will be different.

The local inspections are being done in conjunction with other evaluations, said Bart Lubow, director of the Program for High Risk Youth at the Baltimore-based Casey Foundation.

For example, Supt. Jerry Robinson, a former deputy superintendent for the Chicago Police Department before taking over at the center in June, has been teamed with a national expert in juvenile justice for guidance and help, Lubow said. And the Casey Foundation plans to send in additional outside experts to further examine health-related issues at the center, including the physical treatment of residents.

Youths to be interviewed

Eventually, Lubow would like to see a "model unit'' established that will include all of the best practices.

"The most important difference is that what I have heard and seen is strong indication that the County Board president and the County Board want to use this as a way to finally fix this,'' Lubow said.

Michael Rohan, the director of Juvenile Probation and Court Services for the county, agreed, saying he had "very high hopes this process will provide opportunities for significant systemic change."

Those on the local inspection teams -- which also include two former residents -- are equally determined to get inside and talk to kids to get an honest idea of how things are being run, said Rick Velasquez, executive director of Youth Outreach Services, a Chicago social service agency, and the chairman of the group that will do the assessments.

"If we see it, we say it,'' said Velasquez, who said he also welcomes a certain level of skepticism of this latest effort. "We have to continue to make sure this process has a lot of integrity and that it's transparent.''


Recent Headlines

U.S. appeals judges: Go fight over lawsuits with Dorothy Brown in state court
Sunday, November 13, 2918
Chicago Sun-Times

She's been waiting 15 months for her rape kit to be processed. A new proposal to track evidence aims to change that.
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Preckwinkle to unveil policy roadmap for Cook County for next five years
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

COMMENTARY: Here's how the Shakman case curbed Cook County patronage
Tuesday, November 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Appeals court backs Dorothy Brown in lawsuit over public access to electronic records, says judge overstepped authority
Tuesday, November 13, 2018
Chicago Tribune

What’s Next As Voters Overwhelmingly Support Higher Minimum Wage, Paid Sick Time
Monday, November 12, 2018
Journal and Topics Online

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle's security chief fired after review spurred by watchdog report
Thursday, November 08, 2018
Chicago Tribune

An earlier opening day: 2019 Cook County forest preserves permits go on sale Nov. 15
Thursday, November 08, 2018
Chicago Tribune

Cook County opening 2019 picnic permit sales Nov. 15
Monday, November 05, 2018
Special to

The Cook County Land Bank looks to go commercial
Monday, November 05, 2018
RE Journal

Nov. 15 is new opening date for Cook County forest preserves permits
Monday, November 05, 2018
Daily Herald

Cook County Gun Dealer, Minimum Wage Referendums On Ballot
Monday, November 05, 2018

The Abandoned WWI Monument One Chicago Man Is Determined To Save
Friday, November 02, 2018
Chicago Patch

Cook County freed from federal oversight
Thursday, November 01, 2018
Chicago Daily Law Bulletin

First-of-its-kind trauma recovery center serves survivors of domestic violence, hate crimes, sexual assault, gun violence in Cook County
Monday, October 29, 2018

Northbrook opts in to Cook County paid sick leave ordinance, more uncertainty for employers, lawyer says
Monday, October 29, 2018
Cook County Record

First-of-its-kind Advocate Trauma Recovery Center serves survivors of domestic violence, hate crimes, sexual assault, gun violence in Cook County
Monday, October 29, 2018
WLS Channel 7

Cook County sheriff, CVS team up on safe prescription painkiller disposal
Saturday, October 27, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

HOPE Court, created to keep probationers out of prison, shut down amid problems
Friday, October 26, 2018
Chicago Sun-Times

Can Kaegi really reform the assessor's office?
Friday, October 26, 2018
Crain's Chicago Business

all news items

Paid for by Larry Suffredin and not at taxpayer expense. A Haymarket Production.