Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA)
The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) is a federal law that supports the elimination, reduction, and prevention of sexual abuse in adult and juvenile facilities as well as community correction programs.
Pursuant to PREA, the National Standards to Prevent, Detect, and Respond to Prison Rape: Final Rule were posted to the Federal Register on June 20, 2012 and became law on August 20, 2012.
The standards apply to all facilities operated by the Juvenile Department, and they are required to comply with PREA standards.
The Dallas County Juvenile Department mandates zero tolerance towards any form of conduct that meets the definition of sexual abuse or sexual harassment. The safety and well–being of all referred juveniles is paramount, and the department must extend all efforts to prevent, detect, and respond to such conduct.
Further, the department and its operated facilities must comply with all applicable PREA standards adopted by the United States Department of Justice. Any other facility that contracts with the Department is required to adopt and comply with the PREA standards.
All residents of department operated facilities have the right to be free from abuse, neglect, and exploitation. This includes not being subjected to sexually abusive and/or harassing behavior from staff, contractors, volunteers, and other residents.
If a resident is sexually abused or sexually harassed by any staff, contractors, volunteers, or resident(s), the resident is encouraged to immediately report the incident so that the facility can ensure the resident's safety and the safety of other residents.
Residents have the right to confidentially report sexual abuse or sexual harassment to a juvenile supervision officer, a juvenile probation officer, a counselor, a volunteer, an intern, a supervisor, a manager, a mental health professional, and the Facility Administrator, or the resident may use the facility’s grievance process.
A resident, family member or a member of the public (third party), may anonymously report a resident’s sexual abuse or sexual harassment directly to the Texas Juvenile Justice Department at 1-877-STOP ANE (1-877-786-7263). Any report of sexual abuse or sexual harassment alleged to have occurred within the facility will be investigated to the fullest extent by the Facility Administrator or designee and will be reported to the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department for a possible criminal investigation and prosecution
If a resident is sexually abused, he/she will also be provided access to outside victim advocates for emotional support services related to the sexual abuse. The Parkland Hospital Victim Intervention Program/Rape Crisis Support Center is the designated outside victim advocate for the Dallas County Juvenile Department’s operated facilities and can be contacted at (214) 590-2926 or the 24-hour hotline at (214) 590-0430.
The resident will be provided any emergency or on-going medical treatment needed as result of being the victim of sexual abuse that occurs in the facility. The resident will also be provided a mental health assessment by one of the department’s mental health professionals and provided any needed mental health services as a result of being the victim of sexual abuse that occurs in the facility. These medical and mental health services will be provided at no cost to the resident or his/her family.
The Dallas County Juvenile Department strictly prohibits any form of retaliation directed toward the victim, other residents, or staff who have reported sexual abuse or sexual harassment or who have cooperated with a sexual abuse or sexual harassment investigation. Residents will be protected and their well-being monitored for any possible signs of retaliation against them for making a report or cooperating in an investigation.
PREA Policies and Procedures
Final Report of the PREA compliance audit conducted in August 2016 at the Dr. Jerome McNeil, Jr. Detention Center
Final Report of the PREA compliance audit conducted in August 2016 at the Letot Residential Treatment Center
Final Report of the PREA compliance audit conducted in August 2016 at the Marzelle Hill Center
Final Report of the PREA compliance audit conducted in August 2016 at the START and Residential Drug Treatment Facilities