Alabama has a couple of different types of juvenile detention facilities in the state. First, there are executive offices then correctional institutions which hold youth offenders under the age of 18. Additionally, the Alabama Department of Youth Services has community services which serve the at-risk youth population as well from a community standpoint.
The Alabama Department of Youth Services (DYS) is responsible for all Alabama juvenile inmate records. Therefore, anyone needing to conduct an Alabama juvenile detention center inmate search should contact the DYS directly.
Formerly a boy’s school, Mt. Meigs, was purchased by the Alabama Department of Youth Services in 1911. Of the three institutions in Alabama, Mt. Meigs campus is the most secure and houses older youth offenders age 12–21. Along with traditional juvenile offense programming, this facility has three specialized programs called Accountability Based Sex Offense Prevention Program (ABSOP), the Chemical Addiction Program (CAP), and the Intensive Treatment Unit (ITU).
The Vacca facility houses adjudicated male juvenile offenders, age 12–17 and is a medium-security facility. Along with educational programming, the Vacca facility has a substance abuse program, mental health services, group counseling, and offers a physical education program as well. Each child held there is assigned a caseworker and is required to undergo an individualized Service Plan (ISP), which guides their progress through the system.
The Autauga Campus was built in 1986 by the Bradford Health Services to be used as a drug and alcohol treatment center for adults. Then, in 1994, the Department of Youth Services acquired it to use for youth offenders. This facility is a short-term solution for low to medium risk, male, juvenile offenders. The programs are highly structured and feature an outdoor, adventure-based system to help young men address behavioral and social issues and increase self-esteem, self-discipline, and develop skills in regards to others and contributing to society.
There are roughly 1,000 youth offenders in juvenile detention in Alabama. The majority of them are age 15–17. Only about 155 of them are age 12–14. Nearly half of them landed in juvenile detention because of technical violations and property offenses. Very few are in juvenile detention because of drug charges. Eight-five percent of the offenders are male and the rest female. More than half of them are black, then white and only a tiny number of them are Asian, Hispanic or other races.