Source: (2006) Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice. 4(1):97-115.

When a foster care youth has been arrested, several child-serving agencies are required to communicate effectively to ensure that a responsible guardian is present to take custody. Exploratory research suggests that, in some cases, judges detain children unnecessarily because their guardians fail to appear. This article presents the results of an evaluation of Project Confirm, a program designed to reduce the unnecessary detention of foster care youth. The evaluation reveals a disparity in pre-adjudication detention rates between foster and nonfoster juveniles with similar characteristics both before and after the introduction of the program. The lack of an average program effect on this disparity is explained by the fact that the disparity decreased for juveniles with less serious records but increased for those with more serious records. Finally, both the disparity in detention prior to the program and the program effect differed according to juveniles’ gender, race, and court county.