Decatur, GA –  The Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) announced today that the Wilkes Regional Youth Detention Center (RYDC), located in Washington, Ga., has obtained accreditation from the American Correctional Association (ACA). The secure facility for justice-involved youth underwent a robust audit of its operations and treatment services, receiving accreditation on August 14 during ACA's 151st Congress of Correction held in Nashville, Tenn.  

"I would like to thank the entire DJJ team, especially the frontline staff at the Wilkes RYDC, for attaining accreditation from the American Correctional Association," said DJJ Commissioner Tyrone Oliver. "This agency will continue to utilize national best practices to assist in maintaining an environment for our staff and justice-involved youth that is safe and secure."  

The ACA conducted an extensive onsite three-day audit during the week of January 11, 2021. The audited included an in-depth assessment of the Wilkes RYDC through staff interviews, a comprehensive facility tour, observation of staff performing their duties, and a review of vital files and records. As a result, Wilkes RYDC received 100 percent compliance with mandatory and non-mandatory ACA standards.   

The Wilkes RYDC is the 12th DJJ secure facility to receive ACA accreditation. Additional DJJ secure facilities accredited by the ACA are in Macon, Muscogee, Rockdale, Thomas, Crisp, Terrell, Whitfield, Floyd, and Cobb counties. 

ACA is the oldest association developed specifically for practitioners in the correctional profession. The ACA standards are considered the national benchmark for the effective operation of correctional systems throughout the United States and are necessary to ensure that correctional facilities are operated professionally. They address services, programs, and operations essential to good correctional management, including administrative and fiscal controls, staff training and development, physical plant, safety and emergency procedures, sanitation, food service, and rules and discipline. Standards reflect practical, up-to-date policies and procedures that safeguard staff and offenders' life, health, and safety.  

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The Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice is a multi-faceted agency that serves the state's justice-involved youth up to 21 years of age. The Department's mission is to transform young lives by providing evidence-based rehabilitative treatment services and supervision, strengthening youth and families' well-being, and fostering safe communities. Visit us online at  


Communications Glenn Allen