The Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative (JDAI) is a public safety partnership focusing on reducing the unnecessary and harmful use of secure detention for low-risk juveniles. JDAI ensures that “the right youth, is in the right place, for the right reasons” through strategies that engage public, private, community and family partners.

Our mission is to establish a more effective and efficient detention system in Massachusetts. We accomplish our mission primarily through data-driven partnerships between the court, juvenile justice agencies and other community stakeholders. We work to identity alternatives to secure detention, with the goal of achieving better outcomes for our youth and our communities. 

Supported by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, a foundation that serves to build better futures for disadvantage children and their families, JDAI was designed to support the Casey Foundation’s vision that all youth involved in the juvenile justice system have opportunities to develop into healthy, productive adults. JDAI focuses on the juvenile detention because youth are often unnecessarily or inappropriately detained at great expense, with long-lasting negative consequences for both public safety and youth development.



The Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative (JDAI) in Massachusetts works to ensure that “the right youth, is in the right place, for the right reason.”


This information is provided by the Massachusetts Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative.