The co-existence of conduct problems, drug abuse, and HIV risk behaviors is widely accepted, and numerousstudies have highlighted the co-occurrence of these problems for youths involved in the juvenile justice system.Detrimental social, health, and mental health outcomes for youths with this triple threat of co-occurringproblems are well-documented. Such youths are at high risk for a cascading host of additional problems asthey age including AIDS, severe and persistent physical and mental health problems, incarceration, and earlydeath. Although specific targets for prevention and intervention for youths with the triple-threat constellationhave been identified, no evidence-based models have been developed to integrally address this constellationwith adolescent juvenile justice populations. Program models are needed that treat this constellation in acoordinated fashion across juvenile justice and mental health systems. A lack of research on the developmentand implementation of integrated, multi-system treatment interventions targeting youths with the triple-threatconstellation has led to a gap in the research base and in effective comprehensive services for high-riskyouths. The proposed study builds on preliminary findings from a Mentored Career Development Award (K23MH070684) and aims to test an integrated, family-centered preventive intervention for adolescent boys andgirls with conduct problems who are at high risk for experiencing problems with chronic delinquency, drugabuse, and contracting HIV/AIDS, and their parents in partnership with the local juvenile justice authority wherethe intervention will be delivered. The proposed sample (N=160) includes youths ages 14-18 who have at leastone criminal referral, documented drug use, are living in the community (e.g., biological/adoptive parent,relative or foster care) and have been placed on supervised probation or a formal accountability contract by thejuvenile justice system in Lane County, OR. Youths and their parent(s) will be randomly assigned to anintegrated conduct problem, drug use, and HIV/AIDS risk intervention (ICDH; n=80) or to a services-as-usual(SAU; n=80) control condition. Analyses will examine group differences in proximal and longer-term outcomesbased on group assignment (intervention or control), the effects of potential mediating variables on theassociation between group assignment and proximal and longer-term outcomes, and general developmentalmodeling and theory-building questions specific to high-risk adolescents.
Previous research has identified myriad risk factors associated with co-occurring conduct problems; drug use;and HIV/AIDS risk behaviors in youths involved in the juvenile justice system. The proposed study aims to testan integrated; family-centered preventive intervention for adolescent boys and girls with this co-occurringconstellation of behaviors and their parents in partnership with the juvenile justice system where theintervention will be delivered.