Effectiveness of Multisystemic Therapy for Minority Youth

Outcomes Over 8 Years in Los Angeles County

Published in: OJJDP, Journal of Juvenile Justice, v. 3, no. 2, Spring 2014, p. 24-37

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2014

by Terry Fain, Sarah Michal Greathouse, Susan Turner, H. Dawn Weinberg

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Previous research on Multisystemic Therapy© (MST), an intensive family and community-based treatment for juvenile offenders between 12 and 18 years of age, has been based on small samples that have included very few Hispanic youth. This paper examines juvenile justice outcomes and costs for 757 MST participants and 380 comparison group youth over an 8-year period in Los Angeles County. More than 90% of youth were either Hispanic or Black. Hispanic MST participants had significantly more positive outcomes on three of six juvenile justice measures, compared to Hispanic comparison youth. Black MST participants did not show more positive outcomes than Black comparison youth.

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