The Child Inside is a reflection of experiences, stories and vignettes that the author has collected as a Social Worker in the Juvenile Justice system in New York City, spanning a number of years in two juvenile detention facilities. One of the main themes of the book, which may come as a surprise, is the author's belief that the longer a youth stays in detention, the better it is for him.
The ages of residents in detention ranges from ten years old to fifteen, and residents often turn sixteen and seventeen while waiting for a disposition on their cases. Very often former residents who are seventeen and even eighteen return to detention on old cases, which offers a wide range of experiences and stories to be shared. In addition, former residents often return to visit to let staff know they are doing well. Each resident comes into juvenile detention with a story, a unique personality, needs, experiences and hopes, offering a wide span of stories to be shared in The Child Inside.