Where Are All the Young Men and Women of Color?: Capacity Enhancement Practice in the Criminal Justice System

Where Are All the Young Men and Women of Color?: Capacity Enhancement Practice in the Criminal Justice System

Where Are All the Young Men and Women of Color?: Capacity Enhancement Practice in the Criminal Justice System

Where Are All the Young Men and Women of Color?: Capacity Enhancement Practice in the Criminal Justice System

Synopsis

When it comes to social work practice in community outreach programs, in juvenile detention centres, in prisons, in parole and probation programs, and in the inner cities, Melvin Delgado asks the question: Where are all the young men and women of color? Although many urban residents, especially persons of color, are or have been involved in the juvenile and/or criminal justice system, the topic of criminal offenders and ex-offenders has been much neglected by the human services literature. This book stands as the only work to discuss correctional supervision and the needs of individuals in a nonprescriptive manner, marking a shift toward a capacity enhancement, or strengths perspective, approach -- specifically what are the strengths of individuals and how can they capitalize on them? Delgado includes a section of reflections from the field that applies capacity enhancement principles and methods to case studies.

Excerpt

I customarily set aside a final chapter, or epilogue, as a means of sharing the twists and turns and joys and frustrations associated with writing a book. An author never fully comprehends the experience of writing a particular book until he or she has written the final chapter and sentence. In this case, I have decided to deviate from my usual practice and instead write a preface. This preface, as a result, is intended to raise issues and identify unexpected surprises and challenges for the reader. It will not be burdened by quotes, citations, and “scholarly” language. I will speak in the first person here, and throughout the book, as a means of communicating to the reader my thoughts and feelings.

Critics often argue that a preface, or epilogue as the case may be, is often an excuse for points not raised or poorly addressed, or is indicative of the author's inability to “let go” of the book. I do not view this preface as an attempt to cover myself before the book goes to print. I do not, in addition, have difficulty letting go of a major writing assignment. Having said this, the reader should know that I was totally unprepared for the “journey” of writing this book. That journey resulted in my finding a state of affairs that I could not possibly have anticipated. Maybe the reader, too, will get more than he or she bargained for in reading this book.

This preface seeks to prepare the reader for the more scholarly presentation that follows—replete with definitions, quotations, and extensive citations to the literature, both popular and academic. Everything stated here, unless specifically noted, is addressed in greater detail later on in this book. This preface can best be conceptualized as a road map to the book. It serves its purpose, however, in a manner that does not disguise the pain and sorrow that one experiences in the writing of a book on such a sad and tragic topic. The wasting of human life always pains me, particularly . . .

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