Since our inception, we have been working with Nebraska juvenile courts to address the needs of infants and toddlers.
Our work with courts has continued to expand to include organization and support of court processes that infuse therapeutic practices supportive of families with young children. We currently have two primary partnerships with Judge Heideman’s Lancaster County Family Treatment Drug Court and Judge Crnkovich’s Douglas County FIRST Court. We also provide support to many other courts and court teams across Nebraska.
In 2016, the NRPVYC conducted a needs assessment and issued an initial report recommending core components of a new therapeutic court to address the needs of families, especially those with young children. As a result of this report, Judge Elizabeth Crnkovich started the Family Involved Rehabilitation and Services Track (FIRST Court) in the Douglas County Separate Juvenile Court on January 1st, 2017.
One in every ten new abuse/neglect cases in Douglas County are assigned to FIRST Court.
The Family Treatment Drug Court (FTDC) Track is a mandatory family drug court established by Judge Roger Heideman in the Separate Juvenile Court in Lancaster County, Nebraska. Family Drug Courts are specialized dependency courts focused on families with substance use and abuse. The FTDC Track seeks to:
We provide single issue and larger system support to a number of juvenile courts and juvenile professionals across Nebraska. Examples include:
Family Treatment Drug Court:
Fessinger, M, et. al. (2019). Mandatory, fast, and fair: Case outcomes and procedural justice in a family drug court. Journal of Experimental Criminology, published online 19 June 2019.
Patnode, C., Hautpman, K, Fessinger, M, & Hazen, K. (2018). An evaluation of parent perception in the Lancaster County FTDC Track. Poster presented at the University of Nebraska- Lincoln Undergraduate Research Fair, Lincoln, NE.
Kaiser, H., Fessinger, M., & Hazen, K. (2018). Relinquishing vs. terminating parent rights: The role of procedural justice in a problem-solving court. Poster presented at the University of Nebraska- Lincoln Undergraduate Research Fair, Lincoln, NE.
Engquist, L., Fessinger, M., & Hazen, K. (2017). Parents’ perceptions of the Lancaster Family Treatment Drug Court. Poster presentation at University of Nebraska-Lincoln Undergraduate Research Fair, Lincoln, NE.
Heideman, R., Cole-Mossman, J., Hoetger, L., & Hazen, K.P. (2016). Giving parents a voice: a case study of a family treatment drug court track in Lancaster County, Nebraska. The Court Review, 52(1). 36-42.
Hazen, K., Hoetger, L., Cole-Mossman, J., Hauptman, K., & Brank, E. (2016). Family treatment drug court: A program evaluation. Paper presented at the annual meeting of American Psychology and Law Society, Atlanta, GA.
Hazen, K., Fessinger, M., Johnson, L., & Crnkovich, E. (2018). Therapeutic Approaches to Juvenile Court. Paper presentation at the Nebraska Young Child Institute, Kearney, NE.
Human, R., Fessinger, M., Hazen, K., & Brank, E.M. (2018). (FIRST) Court: A program evaluation. Poster presented at the annual meeting of American Psychology and Law Society, Memphis, TN.
Human, R., Morrissett, M., Fessinger, M., & Hazen, K. (2017). Parent experience in the Douglas County FIRST Court. Poster presentation at University of Nebraska-Lincoln Undergraduate Research Fair, Lincoln, NE.
Wachal, S., Hesson, H., Hazen, K., Hoetger, L., & Hauptman, K. (2016). Relationships between parents, caseworkers, and attorneys in the Douglas County Juvenile Court system. Poster presentation at University of Nebraska-Lincoln Undergraduate Research Fair, Lincoln, NE.
*Citations with the "" symbol have undergraduate co-authors.