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JUVENILE COURT PROGRAM WINS NATIONAL RECOGNITION

A Utah juvenile court program is among only three programs in the United States to receive the prestigious Gould-Wysigner Award from the U.S. Justice Department.

The court's Community Service and Work Restitution Program was honored this week for its effectiveness in curbing recidivism and collecting restitution for victims.The program supervises more than 5,000 juveniles every year in community service projects across the state. Some of its best known projects are the Teens Against Graffiti program, which has greatly reduced graffiti in Provo and other cities in the 4th Judicial District, and the Antelope Island project.

Juveniles convicted of delinquency work for minimum wage in the projects; the money is then returned to their victims for their losses.

Shay Bilchik, director of the department's Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, presented the award Monday to Wanda Santiago, chair of the Utah Juvenile Court Restitution Committee.