The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has asked for a far ranging audit to delve deeper into the Probation Department’s budget, recruitment, hiring and promotional practices. In addition, the audit will look into the effectiveness of programs to rehabilitate youngsters in custody. The audit, which was requested by Supervisors Mark Ridley-Thomas and Michael D. Antonovich, was approved unanimously.
Although the U.S. Department of Justice recently ended a six year review of the camps and found that the Probation Department had made reforms to improve conditions for the hundreds of youngsters currently in custody, the Los Angeles County Auditor–Controller released another report in April that contradicted some of those findings. For instance, the auditor-controller’s report found that none of the camps complied with staff training requirements and 80 percent of the camps did not maintain compliance with child abuse reporting requirements. The audit also found that youths were not always receiving the required substance abuse treatment programs and anger management therapy.
The Supervisors hope that the audit, to be completed by July, will answer some of the discrepancies raised by the previous reports.
“Improvements have been made but the department is not where it ought to be,” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas. “ We need to continue our vigilance to make sure we are doing all we can for these youngsters so they can be rehabilitated and go on to lead productive lives.”