Reno – A delegation of Russian gender-based violence officials, hosted by the Northern Nevada International Center, visited Reno under the auspices of the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program on February 8, 2016. The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ), the Nevada Division of Child and Family Services and the Child Assault Prevention Project participated in a roundtable at the University of Nevada, Reno.
Speakers discussed initiatives, justice systems and protective services offered to juveniles. The roundtable focused on the challenges encountered regarding justice and treatment programs involving families in crisis, gender-based violence, child protective services, victim’s rights, the school-to-prison pipeline and the effectiveness of juvenile and family courts through judicial education.
“I hope the Russian delegates learned as much as I learned about developmentally appropriate juvenile justice education in Russia as well as Nevada,” said Maureen Sheeran, Chief Program Officer, Family Violence and Domestic Relations, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges. “I’m thrilled to see Nevada is on the cutting edge on what our children need, and how we can educate our judges to help them. I believe the delegation had valuable takeaways from our discussion.”
The topics discussed at the roundtable are examples of ongoing social issues in Reno and in the U.S. The Russian Federation is facing similar and possibly worse effects of domestic violence and protection of victims of violence within the family setting. This is due to external ongoing influences in Russia, lack of jobs, alcoholism, and lack of rule of law in protecting women and children. The Russian delegation visited Reno to share best practices from the many successful organizations that tackle and provide protective service program for juveniles and families.
Participants included: Leslie Bittleston, Social Services Chief, Nevada Division of Child and Family Services; Cheri Ely, Program Director, Juvenile Justice, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges; Michael Graf, International Visitor Coordinator, Northern Nevada International Center; Rebecca LeBeau, Executive Director, Child Assault Prevention; Marla Morris, Social Services Chief, Nevada Division of Child and Family Services; Danielle Pugh-Markie, Program Director, Program Development and Judicial Engagement, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges.
Maureen Sheeran, Chief Program Officer, Family Violence and Domestic Relations, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges moderated the panel.
The delegation consisted of six Russian gender and domestic violence experts and two U.S. Department of State Visitor Liaisons.
About the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ):
Founded in 1937, the Reno, Nev.-based National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, is the nation’s oldest judicial membership organization and focused on improving the effectiveness of our nation’s juvenile and family courts. A leader in continuing education opportunities, research, and policy development in the field of juvenile and family justice, the 2,000-member organization is unique in providing practice-based resources to jurisdictions and communities nationwide.