Media Contact: Kerri Webb, Public Information Officer
email@example.com, (562) 315-3388
For Immediate Release:
December 16, 2019
LOS ANGELES—The two Los Angeles County Probation juvenile facilities forced to evacuate due to the October 2019 firestorms have been repopulated. Barry J. Nidorf Juvenile Hall (BJNJH) and Camp Joseph Scott have had to operate out of alternate facilities while smoke cleared, and repairs were made to bring the facilities back online.
The Saddleridge Fire started the night of October 10 in Sylmar. While the fire burned up to the outer wall of BJNJH, over 300 youth and staff evacuated in the middle of the night to the previously closed Los Padrinos Juvenile Hall in Downey. Probation and partner agency staff managed to get the closed facility ready to accept youth that night and have successfully operated the juvenile hall at the temporary location for the last two months.
In addition to ensuring that the air quality inside BJNJH was safe, crews have been working to beautify the facility as well as make some needed repairs. When staff and youth returned to the BJNJH December 14, they were greeted with freshly painted rooms and holiday decorations throughout the facility.
Two weeks after the Saddleridge Fire, the Tick Fire broke out in Santa Clarita, threatening Camp Joseph Scott, Probation’s only girls’ camp. 25 youth and 20 staff were safely transported to Challenger Memorial Youth Center (CYMC) in Lancaster. Once deemed safe by health and safety authorities, Camp Scott reopened November 24 with all operations and activities resuming as normal.
“I want to thank staff that was involved in the temporary operations of BJNJH and Camp Scott while the fire-affected facilities were being brought back online,” said Chief Probation Officer Terri L. McDonald. I also want to acknowledge the heroic efforts of Probation staff and our partners from fire, public safety, and health agencies who assisted with the evacuation of youth and personnel from harm’s way.
The only remaining Probation facility displaced is Campus Kilpatrick which is temporarily being housed at CMYC. The facility was evacuated due to the Woolsey Fire in 2018 and sustained major infrastructure damage that is being repaired with a reopening planned in January 2020.