Average Daily Population

The population level in juvenile facilities is generally reported as the Average Daily Population (ADP), which is determined by counting the number of juveniles in detention each day of the month, adding the daily counts (at 0600 hours), and dividing the sum by the number of days in the month. The ADP is instructive because it represents a useful base line against which to detect trends in juvenile detention population. The ADP in local juvenile halls and camps for 1999 was 11,437.

The Board Rated Capacity (BRC) is the number of available detention beds that comply with Titles 15 and 24 of the California Code of Regulations. The BRC fluctuates with construction and renovation efforts that result in new beds being added to a system and old beds being taken off line. The average BRC for juvenile halls and camps in 1999 was 11,399.

Data collected by the California Youth Authority (CYA) provides a historical context for interpreting the current population in light of facility capacity. Chart 1 shows the relationship between the overall BRC and the overall ADP of all juvenile halls and camps between 1989 and 1999 at five year increments. Examining Chart 1, it appears that there was sufficient capacity in these facilities during 1989 and 1994, but that the number of juveniles detained in 1999 exceeded the capacity of available facilities.

Juvenile halls and camps are two different types of facilities. A juvenile hall is a county facility designed for the reception and temporary care of minors who may not have completed the judicial process (pre-disposition) or for juveniles serving a court ordered period of detention in the juvenile hall. A camp facility is a commitment program for post-disposition minors that is established in accordance with Section 888 of the Welfare and Institutions Code. The ADP for juvenile halls in 1999 was 6,858; the average BRC was 6,333. The ADP for camps in 1999 was 4,579; the average BRC was 5,066.

Chart 2 shows the ADP and BRC for juvenile halls in 1989, 1994 and 1999. During each of the three years under study, the daily population of juvenile halls exceeded the BRC.

Chart 3 shows the same ADP and BRC information for camps. With regard to camps, the BRC accommodated the ADP during each of the three years studied. However, this does not necessarily indicate that there is an adequate number of camp beds. Camp programs have control over the population level. Often, the programs will not accept new intakes into the facility until another minor has been released from the program and thus, there is bed space available. Juveniles committed to a camp program may remain detained in the juvenile hall pending available camp bed space.

The quarterly one-day snapshot, reports that there is an average of 682 minors waiting for transfer to camps per day (please refer to Chart 16). The average length of stay for minors waiting transport to camp is 28.5 days (please refer to Chart 5).

Chart 4 presents the monthly variation in the ADP of juvenile halls during each of the three selected years within a 10-year span.  In Chart 4, one can see that during the three years represented, hall populations increased from January to June (with the notable exception of April in 1999) and declined during the summer months of July and August.  From September through November, the population expanded and then contracted again in December.  Understanding the ebbs and flows of monthly populations could help facility managers anticipate staff and supply needs. 

[1] The California Youth Authority gathered juvenile detention facility data from 1975 to 1998 at which time the Board of Corrections assumed responsibility for the task.  One difference between the two data collection activities is the time for counting the population.  For the CYA, the population count was taken at 12 midnight.  For the BOC, the count occurs at 6:00 am.