Pennsylvania Regional Juvenile Firesetter Programs
In order to promote a statewide program with the goals and objectives outlined in the state’s written JFS Protocol document, cadres of experienced and trained personnel have been recruited for each established region. These persons received training recommended in the Protocol.
The training of these persons enables them to develop, implement and maintain a juvenile firesetter intervention program within their regions utilizing the state’s Protocol. Data collected by a regional program is forwarded to the Office of the State Fire Commissioner for compiling, analysis, and submittal to national data collection agencies. The data collected is be used to improve, expand, and revise regional programs to ensure statewide success.
Statewide Regional Program Development
The statewide regional concept is based on the premise that numerous community-based programs across the state would be cost prohibitive and an unnecessary duplication of effort. Regionally based programs better serve the individual communities throughout the state to address the juvenile firesetting problem. A region is defined as a combination of population, geography, and socio-economic demographics. Generally, a population basis of 500,000 persons should constitute the maximum population served by any one region. Exceptions to the 500,000 figure may be warranted because of situational considerations such as the existence of easy transportation routes within the geographic area, or the availability of trained and experienced JFS interventionists. Juvenile-related agencies and professionals within a delineated region must be sought and encouraged to work within the program and to execute the principles applied to intervention strategies. A special emphasis would be placed on developing programs to learn how to assess, evaluate and apply the appropriate interventions through the multi-disciplinary team concept.
A number of regional and local juvenile firesetter intervention programs are operating within the commonwealth.