TitleNegotiating Cooperation and Control: Resident Leadership in a Juvenile Institution
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2006
AuthorsInderbitzin, M
JournalCorrections Compendium
Pagination6, 7, 33 - 34
Date Published2006

The influence of resident leaders in a juvenile institution may be particularly significant in a population of teenagers locked away from the rest of the world. Within a juvenile institution there is heightened anger and peer pressure and fitting in typically takes precedence over anything else. The opinions of juvenile inmate leaders carry more weight than any order or threat that the institutional staff could impose. In order for staff members to avoid conflict and create a safer environment for themselves and the inmates, a foundation built on cooperative relationships becomes imperative. Juvenile justice agencies should encourage leadership skills learned in the cottage, especially as these juvenile inmates prepare to reenter their communities. Utilizing 1 cottage in a maximum security locked facility, housing approximately 200 serious and chronic male offenders, age 15 to 20, research focused on the Blue cottage where violent juveniles were housed. The study examined the leadership role of juvenile inmates within the cottage and the relationship between the juvenile leader and staff. It examined how offender leaders influenced the day-to-day life of a cottage of violent offenders; how inmate cooperation, due to the leadership influence, could make juvenile correctional facilities calmer and safer places. References