Clark County Commissioners Lawrence Weekly and Susan Brager, Sheriff Joe Lombardo, and officials from multiple agencies and organizations celebrated the grand opening of the Southern Nevada Family Justice Center and its partnership with the newly-relocated Harbor Juvenile Assessment Center.
Located at 861 N. Mojave Road, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department donated its former training center complex to serve as the new home of the community's Family Justice Center and the Harbor. The two programs are separate but offer similar one-stop service models to clients. The Family Justice Center offers collaborative services from multiple agencies to help victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking. Victims can file police reports, obtain temporary protection orders, counseling, advocacy and housing assistance from the center.
The Harbor offers counseling, substance abuse, tutoring and other services to troubled youth and their families coping with delinquency, truancy and other issues. The Harbor is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, while the Family Justice Center is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The phone number for the Family Justice Center is (702) 828-7714. The phone number and website for the Harbor are: (702) 455-6912, www.theharborlv.com. Walk-ins are welcome to both programs.
"We are grateful to Metro for its commitment to the Harbor and for its role in creating this unique facility for our community," said Clark County Commissioner Lawrence Weekly, whose District D includes the Family Justice Center campus and who has worked closely with Clark County's Juvenile Justice Services Department and other agencies and civic leaders to create the Harbor. "We've learned from our experience with the Harbor that collaboration is the key to changing lives, and I am certain that the Family Justice Center will have equal success with the women and families it serves."
In addition to Metro, partnering agencies at the Family Justice Center include SafeNest, Rape Crisis Center, La Alianza Comunitaria Transnacional, Salvation Army/Seeds of Hope, Legal Aid Center of Southern Nevada, Las Vegas Justice Court, Las Vegas City Attorney's Office, Clark County District Attorney's Office. There are times when some clients may be served by both the Harbor and Family Justice Center programs, and close collaboration already occurs between several partnering agencies involved in the programs.
Clark County opened the Harbor in October 2016 at a temporary location on Pecos Road next to the Family Court Building as a collaborative effort among many community partners with the goal of keeping
children and teens out of the local juvenile justice system by connecting them with services they and their families need. The program has served about 3,000 local youth and their families since its debut. Program partners include the County's Department of Juvenile Justice Services and Department of Family Services, the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, Clark County Family Court, the local cities, the Clark County School District, the Clark County District Attorney's Office, Metro, the North Las Vegas Police Department, Three Square, and several nonprofit organizations
"We are proud of the partnerships we've built to make the Harbor a success we can be proud of as a community," said Clark County Commissioner Susan Brager, vice chair of the Juvenile Justice Services Policy and Fiscal Affairs Committee. "The goal is to help children and their families get connected to services before law enforcement or the courts get involved. We know early intervention can have a truly meaningful impact on shaping the trajectory of a young person's life."
Thanks to $1.9 million in funding dedicated to The Harbor in the 2017 Legislative session, the program was able to expand to a 24-hour operation on Feb. 3, 2018 after moving its new location on Mojave Road. Like its previous facility, the layout of the Harbor includes a play area for young children, sofas and offices for conferences between family members and community service providers.
To date, about 25 percent of The Harbor's clients have been walk-ins from the community. Other referrals come directly from police dropping kids off at The Harbor instead of the juvenile detention center or intake staff at the detention center diverting kids to The Harbor if they have been arrested for a first-time or low level offense. Counseling, mentoring, and substance abuse treatment are the main areas of service referrals. Anyone in the community who believes a child or family could be served by the Harbor, including coaches, minsters, and relatives, is encouraged to call or visit the facility for help and referrals to local resources.