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Secretary's Messages


  • ROADMAP UPDATE: Last week, while I was in the Panhandle for Roadmap to System Excellence meetings in Bay and Escambia counties, I visited the staff and youth at the Pensacola Boys Base, the Escambia Regional Juvenile Detention Center (RJDC) and the PACE Center for girls in Pensacola.
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  • This week I led the ninth and tenth Roadmap to System Excellence meetings in Panama City (Wednesday) and Pensacola (Thursday) since we launched the Roadmap in November. Roadmap Town Hall and stakeholder meetings have so far attracted more than one thousand citizens to learn more about juvenile justice reform.
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  • After a brief hiatus for the holidays, the Panhandle is the next stop for Roadmap to System Excellence Town Hall meetings. On Wednesday, Jan. 30 I will be at the Bay County Government Center and on Thursday, Jan. 31 I will be in Escambia County at the John and Paul Amos Performance Studio, Building 23, Pensacola State College.
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  • We are moving ahead with the next stage of the Roadmap to System Excellence statewide tour. Two more meetings are scheduled at the end of this month – in Bay County at the Bay County Government Center on Jan. 30 and in Escambia County at Pensacola State College on Jan. 31.
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  • ROADMAP UPDATE: Additional Roadmap to System Excellence meetings are being planned for later this month and February after last year’s highly successful kickoff and subsequent statewide listening tour in eight major cities.
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  • ROADMAP UPDATE: Last week, I traveled to South Florida for the final Roadmap to System Excellence meetings of this this year. I met with newspaper editorial boards, stakeholders and members of the public in Palm Beach County (Dec. 17-18), Broward County (Dec. 19) and Miami-Dade County (Dec. 20).
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  • ROADMAP UPDATE: Next week I will be in South Florida to lead a series of Town Hall meetings about the Roadmap to System Excellence. Please join me at these final Roadmap meetings of 2012 if your schedule permits.
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  • This week I led the latest series of editorial board, stakeholder and Town Hall meetings in Orlando (Monday), Tampa (Tuesday) and Pinellas County (Wednesday) to discuss the Roadmap to System Excellence. We met with 15 journalists, 68 stakeholders and more than 350 members of the public at these meetings.
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  • ROADMAP UPDATE: On Tuesday, we took the Roadmap to System Excellence to Gainesville, where senior staff and I conducted the second in a series of editorial board visits, stakeholder meetings and Town Hall meetings across Florida.
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  • TAKING THE ROADMAP TO GAINESVILLE: I was gratified at the positive response to last Thursday’s Roadmap to System Excellence Town Hall meeting in Tallahassee. The next Town Hall meeting is at Santa Fe College in Gainesville on Tuesday, Nov. 27 from 6:00 to 8:00 pm.
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  • FIRST ROADMAP TOWN HALL MEETING A SUCCESS: I am deeply grateful to the more than 100 members of the public who attended the first Roadmap Town Hall meeting in Tallahassee Thursday night. Stakeholders, employees, civic leaders and parents from Leon, Franklin, Gadsden, Jefferson, Liberty, Madison, Taylor, and Wakulla counties contributed valuable comments to shape the path of juvenile justice reform.
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  • INTERNATIONAL HONOR: Secretary Walters was one of eight recipients of the 2012 Juvenile Justice Without Borders International Award presented by the International Juvenile Justice Observatory (IJJO) during the International Youth Justice Convention.
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  • ROADMAP UPDATE: I was recently interviewed for my views on juvenile delinquency, reform and the agency’s Roadmap to System Excellence. You can watch the first in a series of these interviews by clicking here.
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  • 2012 FAITH SYMPOSIUM A SUCCESS: Today was the culmination of a remarkable week in which hundreds of people from across Florida and the nation joined together at the “Our Children, Our Future: Restoring Hope” faith symposium in Orlando.
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  • ROADMAP UPDATE: Thanks to everyone who has already submitted questions and comments about the Roadmap to System Excellence. The Roadmap builds on the reforms already underway at DJJ and guides us on the path to making Florida the national model for juvenile justice administration.
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  • DETENTION KUDOS: Kudos to Dr. Gladys Negron, South Region director for Detention Services, for deciding to relocate the south regional office to recently vacated space in the Miami-Dade Regional Juvenile Detention Center (RJDC).
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  • SUMMIT A SUCCESS: On Monday, Sept. 24, more than 250 concerned state and community leaders and advocates attended Florida’s first Human Trafficking Summit, presented by the Florida Children and Youth Cabinet and the Florida State University Center for the Advancement of Human Rights.
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  • HUMAN TRAFFICKING SUMMIT: On Monday, Sept. 24, Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, Department of Children and Families Secretary David Wilkins and I will lead the Florida Children and Youth Cabinet in a Human Trafficking Summit in Tallahassee. Human trafficking is the fastest growing criminal industry in the world and is a form of modern-day slavery.
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  • I was pleased to address the Florida Association of District School Superintendents during their leadership conference in Orlando on Thursday. School referrals to DJJ continue to decline and there is opportunity for further improvement through alternatives to arrest, such as Civil Citation, mediation and teen court.
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  • Prudent planning prevented problems for youth appearing before the court when Tampa was filled with visitors for the Republican National Convention last month. The proceedings were moved smoothly to the Hillsborough Juvenile Detention Center-West, and logistical and technology support to accommodate the court, state attorneys and public defenders worked flawlessly.
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