Area Youth Concerns


The 13-year-old boy who admitted to setting the runaway rail car in motion won’t face any criminal charges.
    But the incident is giving city youth organizations more of a reason to keep kids busy and safe this summer.

It’s common that teenagers make bad choices, but sometimes that happens as a result of a lack of things to do. Area youth organizations say they are able to fill the gap over the last weeks of summer.

The City of Utica Youth Bureau says the majority of kids have spent time cooling off at the local area pools.  

Lonnie Jenkins, The Recreation Director for the City Youth Bureau of Utica says, “Addison miller will probably get 150 kids a day, Buckley gets another 125, and Seymour gets about another 100 kids, these kids go swimming from 1 to 5pm.”

The center has plenty of activities over the eight week summer break from basketball to boxing. The Oneida County Youth Bureau is also working to give both boys and girls a number of activities to choose from.

Kevin Green, The Director for the Oneida County Youth Bureau says, “The more offerings you have, the better chance you have of getting more kids involved. I have two daughters, i think about the girls, how can I get the Oneida County Youth Bureau to get the girls involved.

While a teen caused the crash at Union Station, the bureau realizes that young people do make mistakes that don’t always deserve a heavy punishment.

Jenkins adds, “I did like what the police did, with not charging this young man. Hopefully he learned something from this. We have incidents that happen all day long here.”

The youth bureau has worked to involve as many kids as they can, but they can’t do it all alone.

“I think more parents need to take initiative for their kids involved with the programs. We do have them. And we can do is hand out the flyers, but they have to make sure they get involved with the programs.”

Both the county and city youth bureau have a number of open programs for kids to participate in.
visit and visit the Youth Bureau section or visit the Oneida County website at

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