Forensic/Community Systems Consultation

Throughout your residency you will have opportunities to work with the legal system. This rotation, however, provides systematic, concentrated experience in this crucial area.

You will work in the Erie County Youth Detention Center, where the adolescent population consists primarily of cultural and ethnic minorities from low socioeconomic-status families.

Faculty provide on-site direct supervision during your evaluations. You also will collaborate closely with staff social workers and pediatricians, and you will assist faculty in consulting with community systems and agencies.

You will manage medication on a short-term basis for a small number of youths you evaluate. You also will prepare written reports to be used by detention center staff and the courts. Cases often involve the acute assessment of dangerousness, management issues in the facility and initiating medication treatment.

You will primarily see adolescents ages 13 to 16. Many have PTSD, externalizing disorders such as ADHD, learning disorders and/or mood disorders. A few may have psychotic disorders.

More than 60 percent of patients have an active substance abuse disorder and 40 percent are considered seriously emotionally disturbed by New York State regulations. More than 50 percent have suffered maltreatment. Approximately 25 to 30 percent are on psychotropic medications when they enter detention. Many of these youths have learning disorders as well.

The detention center incorporates positive programming in collaboration with community organizations to reduce recidivism, provide a successful transition to home communities and build a sense of leadership, responsibility and self-confidence. It has 64 beds for youths adjudicated as juvenile delinquents and/or juvenile offenders awaiting disposition or trial.


You will evaluate and complete written reports for two to three youths each week.

You also will take part in treatment team meetings at the center, meetings of the Safety Net for Youth Committee for Erie County and the weekly Juvenile Justice Mental Health meeting, which reviews the status of everyone under juvenile justice jurisdiction, including youths in non-secure detention or remanded to the community.

In addition, this rotation gives you opportunities to observe relevant court proceedings.

For More Information

For more information about training in a juvenile forensic setting, contact:

Martin, Peter

Peter Martin, MD, MPH

Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry

University at Buffalo - Psychiatry Erie County Medical Center 462 Grider St. Rm 1168 Buffalo, NY 14215

Phone: (716) 898-4857


Rotation Details

  • Year 2 rotation
  • One day per week for four months

Clinical Site

Erie County Youth Detention Center
810 East Ferry Street
Buffalo, NY 14211
Phone: (716) 923-4000

Faculty and Staff

  • one faculty child and adolescent psychiatrist

Patient Population

  • more than 75 percent from low socioeconomic-status families
  • 50 percent minority (mostly African-American and Hispanic)