The Youthful Diversion Program was created in response to widespread concern about the effects of underage substance abuse. Substance abuse in general and alcohol abuse in particular have been shown to increase the likelihood that a young person will engage in criminal activity or become a victim.
The goal of the Youthful Diversion Program is to significantly reduce alcohol- and drug-related incidents through education and enhancement of decision-making skills. Based on the Juvenile Diversion Program model, the Youthful Diversion Program serves first-time offenders between the ages of 17-21 charged with certain minor substance abuse offenses. Like the Juvenile Diversion Program, the Youthful Diversion Program works early and intensively with the causes of juvenile/youth crime by intervening the first time a youth engages in criminal activity.