Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

New initiative hopes to divert youth from violence, courts

The Downtown Pittsburgh skyline on a sunny, clear summer day.
Keith Srakocic

On today’s episode of The Confluence:

New initiative launches to reduce the number of youth entering the juvenile justice system 

Last week, a collaboration of youth equity organizations and others announced a new initiative to try and reduce youth violence and arrests in Allegheny County.

Caring Connections for YOUth will provide a 24-hour call center to connect callers to community-based supportive treatments and resources for individuals who are 18 years old and under.

Kathi Elliott, chief executive officer of Gwen’s Girls, says the goal of this initiative is to provide access for communities before children enter the juvenile justice system.

“We know that there are great supports, services and programs that are happening across our county, but there's an access problem,” says Elliott. “And so that's what we're here to do, to mitigate the access problem and be that connector. We're not doing the intervention per se. We are doing the connection.”

Gwen’s Girls and the Black Girls Equity Alliance are leading this project. This initiative will also include leaders from the Allegheny County Juvenile Probation and Court Administration, judges, the Department of Human Services, school administrators, law enforcement, social workers and youth.

“Court is traumatic,” says Kim Berkeley Clark, president judge of the Fifth Judicial District Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas. “No matter how trauma-informed we might think we are, no matter how nice the judge is, no matter how wonderful our probation officers and caseworkers are, involvement in the justice system, in the court system, is traumatic for children and families.”

A conversation with retiring Democratic House Representative Mike Doyle

When a new session of Congress begins next year, Democrat Mike Doyle won't be part of it for the first time in nearly three decades. Doyle was the dean of Pennsylvania's delegation in the House of Representatives, but he decided to retire rather than run for re-election this year. He spoke with 90.5 WESA's Chris Potter about how Congress has changed, the advice he gave his replacement and whether he regrets leaving.

Financial problems among one of the first signs of adults developing dementia

About 10% of people over age 70 have dementia. But chances are symptoms will appear well before a formal diagnosis and financial problems are often among the very first signs. 90.5 WESA’s Sarah Boden reports this means that some people lose significant amounts of money before their families realize anything is wrong.

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s daily news program. Tune in Monday to Thursday at 9 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. to hear newsmakers and innovators take an in-depth look at stories important to the Pittsburgh region. Find more episodes of The Confluence here or wherever you get your podcasts. 

Recent Episodes Of The Confluence