By Mike Egami, U.S. Army Garrison-Hawaii Public AffairsMay 14, 2010
FORT SHAFTER, Hawaii - When it comes to getting wayward youth back on track, the Oahu Juvenile Review Board is ready to step in and do its part.
Since September 2009, the U.S. Army Garrison-Oahu JRB has tackled just about every infraction committed by a juvenile, here, or at Wheeler Army Airfield, Tripler Army Medical Center and Schofield Barracks.
"This is USAG-Oahu's sole opportunity to combine efforts with local commands and USAG-Oahu support agencies, to wrap our arms around our own youth in an attempt to stem future misconduct," said Command Sgt. Maj. Darryl Jannone, command sergeant major, USAG-Oahu, and JRB president. "It is us taking care of our own and attempting to preserve the Army culture in the process."
Since its inception, the JRB has been a strong advocate in setting Army youth straight. It has also been recognized by Installation Management Command as a "Number One" practice.
The JRB is made up of professionals from USAG-Oahu community services, directorates and other organizations, all coming together to help youngsters.
"We are there to ensure that juveniles know exactly why their behavior needs to change and where they could find themselves if they don't change the way they think and act," said Sgt. Maj. Sulang Sarver, board member.
Sulang works for Directorate of Emergency Services, USAG-HI.
"The board members are more than likely repeating things that parents have said to their children, but it's different hearing it from a total stranger," Sarver said.
Other members share similar commitments to support teens and their families.
"Professionals who make up the board work together to support each teen to get on the right track by accepting responsibility, expressing apologies to the community and their own families, and to learn about resources the garrison command has made available for their use," said Sara Hill, clinical supervisor, Adolescent Substance Abuse Counseling Services, Schofield Barracks Health Clinic.
Jannone is proud of the volunteer board members and credits them for the program's success.
"I may sit at the head of the table and guide the Juvenile Review Board as its president, but the true strength of the JRB is found in the board members that provide their time, professionalism and enduring support for our military youth," Jannone said. "Without their participation, it would be a hollow process."
The type of infractions committed by juveniles vary from shoplifting, underage drinking, criminal property damage, home break-ins, trespassing, assault, school bus misconduct and harassment.
Shoplifting continues to rank first among crimes committed, despite the many cameras and presence of plain clothes security personnel at Army and Air Force Exchange Service facilities.
As of April 22, there were 37 shoplifting cases in which AAFES privileges were suspended to youths.
Other administrative actions are mandatory participation in community service projects, Saturday mornings at Tripler's Fisher House; at the Pililaau Army Recreation Center, White Plains Beach; and at the 25th Infantry Division Museum. Additional community partnerships will provide more community projects in the future.
Youth participating in the outings expressed gratification and a sense of pride when cleaning and landscaping as a group.
"The juveniles that have appeared before the board have recently performed two beach clean-up community service projects," Jannone said.
"About 50 juveniles and several of their family members picked up a cumulative 400 pounds of rubbish off of White Plains Beach," Jannone said. "This enforces the intent of the board to process behavior modification and clearly illustrates our ability as service members and family members to participate in our community outside the gates, rather than just exist in it."