The resources in this section address a range of topics that are relevant to serving youth with disabilities who are involved in juvenile justice and/or other intersecting systems, such as foster care. The resources are separated into broad topic areas; each resource is listed under the primary topic it addresses. Many of the resources provide useful information about multiple topics.

Featured Resources

Course: Y-ReCONNECTS Community of Practice: Resources for System Transformation

There are six modules in this course. While the first four modules are geared toward systems professionals/service providers, and the last two modules are directed toward system-involved youth and young adults, anyone working in or impacted by juvenile justice and other systems can benefit from learning and applying the material.

Restorative Justice: Resources for Putting Principles into Practice (PPT)

Restorative justice is a philosophical approach to wrongdoing that focuses on the needs of the victim and the offender, as well as the involved community. It is based on a theory of justice that considers crime and wrongdoing to be an offense against relationships, rather than the state or school. Restorative approaches involve working WITH the participants not prescribing or directing a response to wrongdoing.  Restorative approaches can contribute to better communication and improved outcomes for justice-involved youth working with and across varies service systems.

This PowerPoint describes key RJ principles and offers several video and print resources for further learning.

Diversion Programs for Justice-Involved Youth with Disabilities

Are you interested in understanding how local diversion and reentry programs serve justice-involved youth with disabilities in New York State? We conducted a landscape analysis of such programs in ten New York State counties, to help summarize the different types of programs offered by counties to support justice-involved youth with disabilities.

Learning from Families

These video blogs highlight lessons learned from systems-impacted families and how providers can use these insights to improve outcomes.

Additional Resources

Quick Guides: Tools for Indepenence

Resource Guides & Training Tools

WRI Solutions created a series of accessible guides, written in plain language and intended for self-advocates to learn more about a variety of life topics. Each guide features answers to common questions, checklists, information about NYS resources, and more. WRI also created materials to assist with training on four main Quick Guide topics. These training materials are great resources to encourage conversation about each topic. Quick Guides are free and easy to use, and all guides are available in English and Spanish.

Quick Guides Topic Areas:

  • Relationships (“Me, Myself, and Others”)
  • Housing (“A Place of My Own”)
  • Employment & Volunteering (“A Job of My Own”)
  • Transition After High School (“My Life After High School”)

All materials are available on the WRI Solutions website

The Quick Guides were funded by the NYS Council on Developmental Disabilities (CDD).

Other Resources

YJAM Toolkit: How to Create a Youth-Centered Policy Roundtable

This guide created by The Coalition for Juvenile Justice (CJJ) and the National Juvenile Justice Network (NJJN outlines the key steps and considerations that partners, including youth, should take as they plan and carry out policy roundtables in their states and communities.

Respect Youth Stories: A Toolkit for Advocates to Ethically Engage in Youth Justice Storytelling

This toolkit was created by Citizens for Juvenile Justice (CfJJ) and the National Juvenile Justice Network to assist advocacy organizations in establishing ethical and youth-informed practices for facilitating young people sharing their stories in public, including through the press, legislative testimony, digital media, or panel discussions, and, to help youth understand their right to establish boundaries while sharing their experiences.

Interacting with People with Developmental Disabilities

The tip sheet describes how court personnel and service providers can effectively interact with people with developmental disabilities.

Fact Sheet: Collateral Consequences of Justice Involvement

Publication: Justice-Involved Youth with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

This 2015 publication by the Arc’s National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability provides an overview of history and research related to justice involvement of youth with IDD, and offers suggestions for actions that the juvenile justice community can take to decrease system involvement and better support youth.

Disability Etiquette and Interaction for Law Enforcement

The NIDILRR-funded Rocky Mountain ADA Regional Center released a new web course, Disability Etiquette and Interaction for Law Enforcement. This 90-minute course was designed to shed light on the importance of disability awareness. The course provides guidelines for interacting with individuals with many different types of disabilities with examples drawn from real-life situations, and for understanding the importance of language when it comes to the attitudes and perceptions of people with disabilities in law enforcement settings. The course is free, and registration is required.

The Unified Court System

The mission of the Unified Court System (UCS) is to deliver equal justice under the law and to achieve the just, fair and timely resolution of all matters that come before our courts. In the service of our mission, the UCS is committed to operating with integrity and transparency, and to ensuring that all who enter or serve in our courts are treated with respect, dignity and professionalism. We affirm our responsibility to promote a court system free from any and all forms of bias and discrimination and to promote a judiciary and workforce that reflect the rich diversity of New York State.

Publication: Updating New York State's Employment Restrictions for People with Criminal Convictions

This document summarizes how a criminal conviction limits access to housing, banking, driving and other rights and needs that can make it harder to find and maintain employment, as well as NYS initiatives designed to address some of these barriers.

Publication: NYC Commission on Human Rights Legal Enforcement Guidance on the Fair Chance Act and Employment Discrimination on the Basis of Criminal History

This document explains how July 2021 changes to the Fair Chance Act add new protections for people whose criminal history includes unsealed violations, unsealed non-criminal offenses, and extend protections of the Act to cover current employees and to reach pending cases.

New York State Federal Bonding Program

The following video describes how the federal bonding program can benefit businesses and job seekers who may have difficulty finding employment due to legal system involvement and other barriers.

Fact Sheet: What Businesses Need to Know

This fact sheet provides an overview of what businesses need to know in order to take advantage of the federal bonding program.

Fact Sheet: What Job Seekers Need to Know

This fact sheet provides an overview of what job seekers need to know in order to take advantage of the federal bonding program.

Webinar Series: FISA Foundation Webinars on Race + Disability

This webinar series addresses topics such as the impacts of school policing on students of color and students with disabilities, fostering cultural humility in disability services, embedding racial equity in organizational culture, human trafficking victims with disabilities, and sexual assault survivors with disabilities.

Racial/Ethnic Disparities

Report: Black Disparities in Youth Incarceration

This report summarizes disparities among Black system-involved youth as compared to their white peers.

Report: Latinx Disparities in Youth Incarceration

This report summarizes disparities among Latinx system-involved youth as compared to their white peers.

Report: Disparities in Tribal Youth Incarceration

This report summarizes disparities among system-involved tribal youth as compared to their white peers.

Race, Disability, and Trauma

The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN) Learning Center

These resources on this site address critical topics. Non-members can access NCTSN the resources by creating a free account. Two resources worth noting are: "The Trauma and Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Toolkit"", and the webinar entitled "Addressing Trauma and Disproportionate Ethnic Minority Contact in Juvenile Justice through Empowerment".

The Arc’s National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability created some resources about being the victim of a crime, which is something that people with cognitive disabilities experience more often than people with other types of disabilities. These resources are described below.

Fact Sheet: Know Your Rights as a Crime Victim with a Disability"

This fact sheet uses plain language to explain different types of victimization and where to find help.

Webinar: Ending Victimization of People with IDD by Bullies

This webinar, “Ending Victimization of People with IDD by Bullies” describes what bullying is, how to respond to it, and how to get support.

Webinar: Know Your Rights: Crime Victims with Disabilities

This webinar features a discussion on sexual violence led by a survivor of sexual violence, who is a self-advocate and a national spokesperson on sexual violence prevention.

Tip Sheet:What to Expect When You Call 911

This tip sheet describes how people with developmental disabilities and their support systems can prepare for interactions with police and other first responders in emergency situations.

A counselor talks with a client

Featured Video

How should we define outcomes in juvenile justice reentry?

Defining Outcomes in Juvenile Justice Reentry

Kendell Coker

Glossary of Terms

Need help understanding the language and processes of the juvenile justice system? We put together a glossary that explains key terms related to system involvement and community reentry of youth and young adults.