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West Chicago

Juvenile detention center in Warrenville installs suicide-resistant furniture

WARRENVILLE – In response to recent suicide attempts, a juvenile detention center in Warrenville has installed suicide-resistant furnishings to remove room features that could be used to commit suicide, officials said.

There were four attempted suicides between September and December 2012 and one attempt this August at Illinois Youth Center Warrenville, said Jennifer Florent, a spokesperson with the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice.

That department runs IYC Warrenville and received an emergency appropriation to pay for the $750,000 project after seeking bids earlier this year, Florent said.

New furnishings included beds, desks, stools, toilets and sinks, she said. Vents also were replaced in all rooms and electrical outlets were placed outside rooms.

These changes were made to eliminate any features of the furniture, fixtures and air vent covers – such as bars, legs, pipes and edges – that could be used to tie a sheet or piece of clothing to, Florent said.

Three of the center's four buildings currently have the new furniture. The department hopes to use Fiscal Year 2014 funds to complete the upgrade of the fourth building, which is often unoccupied based on the facility's population, she said.

The average daily population of IYC Warrenville is 78 residents, according to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice website. The facility's capacity is 86.

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