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  • SAMHSA's Concept of Trauma and Guidance for a Trauma-Informed Approach

    SAMHSA's Concept of Trauma and Guidance for a Trauma-Informed Approach Cover
    SAMHSA's Concept of Trauma and Guidance for a Trauma-Informed Approach

    "Trauma is a widespread, harmful and costly public health problem. It occurs as a result of violence, abuse, neglect, loss, disaster, war and other emotionally harmful experiences. Trauma has no boundaries with regard to age, gender, socioeconomic status, race, ethnicity, geography or sexual orientation. It is an almost universal experience of people with mental and substance use disorders … The purpose of this paper is to develop a working concept of trauma and a trauma-informed approach and to develop a shared understanding of these concepts that would be acceptable and appropriate across an array of service systems and stakeholder groups. SAMHSA puts forth a framework for the behavioral health specialty sectors, that can be adapted to other sectors such as child welfare, education, criminal and juvenile justice, primary health care, the military and other settings that have the potential to ease or exacerbate an individual’s capacity to cope with traumatic experiences … The desired goal is to build a framework that helps systems “talk” to each other, to understand better the connections between trauma and behavioral health issues, and to guide systems to become trauma-informed" (p. 2-3). Sections of this publication include: introduction; purpose and approach—developing a framework for trauma and a trauma-informed approach; background—trauma—where we are and how we got here; SMAHSA's concept of trauma; SAMHSA's trauma-informed approach—key assumptions and principles; guidance for implementing a trauma-informed approach; next steps—trauma in the context of community; and conclusion.

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  • Body Armor for Law Enforcement Officers: In Brief

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    Body Armor for Law Enforcement Officers: In Brief

    "Firearms are one of the leading causes of deaths for law enforcement officers feloniously killed in the line of duty … Since FY1999, Congress has provided funding to state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies to help them purchase armor vests for their officers through the Matching Grant Program for Law Enforcement Armor Vests (also referred to as the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Initiative, hereinafter “the BPV program”). Congress is considering legislation that would reauthorize the program through FY2018. S. 933, the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program Reauthorization Act of 2013, would, among other things, reauthorize the BPV program until FY2018" (p. 1). This report provides an overview of the BPV program and covers issues relevant to a debate regarding the reauthorization of BPV. Sections following a summary are: background; Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program Reauthorization Act of 2013 (S. 933); authorization and appropriations; the use of armor vests by law enforcement; the life cycle of armor vests; effectiveness of armor vests; and selected issues for Congress.

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  • Preventing Juvenile Suicide through Improved Collaboration: Strategies for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice Agencies

    Preventing Juvenile Suicide through Improved Collaboration: Strategies for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice Agencies Cover
    Preventing Juvenile Suicide through Improved Collaboration: Strategies for Mental Health and Juvenile Justice Agencies

    Recommendations are presented for effectively preventing suicide among youth in the juvenile justice system. These can be successfully achieved through the combined collaboration of juvenile justice, law enforcement, mental health, substance abuse, child welfare, and education agencies and organizations. Sections of this report include: introduction; overview of 10 overarching priorities; overview of 12 strategies; overarching priorities and related strategies to improve collaboration in detail; "Matrix of Overarching Priorities and Strategies"; conclusion; and "Appendix A: Environmental Scanning Tool". "In recognition of the higher rate of suicide and suicidal behaviors among youth involved in the juvenile justice system who have mental health disorders, substance abuse disorders, and other relevant risk factors for suicide (e.g., a history of child sexual and physical abuse and other forms of trauma), it is urgent that all youth-serving systems effectively collaborate across all levels of government. This collaboration will likely save the lives of vulnerable youth by creating opportunities to intervene prior to the youth engaging in suicidal behavior and greatly enhance the provision of appropriate and effective supports and services. Implementing the strategies recommended in this paper will enable systems and practitioners to reduce the risk of youth suicide while achieving the collaborations necessary for sustained positive suicide prevention strategies" (p. 18).

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  • Screening and Assessment for Suicide Prevention: Tools and Procedures for Risk Identification among Juvenile Justice Youth

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    Screening and Assessment for Suicide Prevention: Tools and Procedures for Risk Identification among Juvenile Justice Youth

    Identifying suicide risk among young people is a critical component of the comprehensive approach that the juvenile justice system must adopt to prevent suicide. Ideally, this identification is done with research-based screening and assessment instruments. To select effective instruments, it is necessary to be aware of the juvenile justice system’s responsibilities in preventing suicide, the contexts in which screening and assessment instruments are used, current standards for screening instruments and assessment tools used in mental health and juvenile justice settings, and specific instruments that are available to advance suicide prevention efforts. These facets of suicide prevention are explored in this paper (p. 1). Sections of this publication include: introduction; measuring suicide risk; screening and assessment procedures; current standards for instrument selection; four screening tools; five assessment tools; implementation of suicide risk screening and assessment; and conclusion.

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  • Suicidal Ideation and Behavior among Youth in the Juvenile Justice System: A Review of the Literature

    Suicidal Ideation and Behavior among Youth in the Juvenile Justice System: A Review of the Literature Cover
    Suicidal Ideation and Behavior among Youth in the Juvenile Justice System: A Review of the Literature

    What is currently known about suicidal ideation and behavior among youth involved in the juvenile justice system is reported. "Based on findings of this review, between 13,500 and 20,600 detainees may have considered suicide in the past year and 11,000 delinquent youth may have attempted suicide in the past year. With proper screening and intervention, these estimates can be lessened and the risk of suicide among this vulnerable population can be minimized" (p. 10). Sections of this report include: introduction; findings from the first national survey on juvenile suicide in confinement (2009); suicidal ideation and behavior among youth in the juvenile justice system; review methodology; results according to recent, past-year, and lifetime suicidal ideation, suicidal behavior (attempts), or gender and ethnic disparities in suicidal ideation and behavior; variables associated with suicidal ideation and behavior; discussion about prevalence of and associated variables for suicidal ideation and behavior; and six recommendations for future research. An appendix shows "Studies of Prevalence of Suicide Ideation and Behavior among Youth in the Juvenile Justice System" organized according to studies of youth sampled at post-arrest, intake to detention, in detention, post-adjudication, at different points of contact in the juvenile justice system, or undefined.

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  • Juvenile Detention Facility Assessment: 2014 Update

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    Juvenile Detention Facility Assessment: 2014 Update

    "The [Annie E. Casey] Foundation has issued this revised version of the [Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI)] standards to acknowledge and incorporate regulations that affect the full range of facility operations. This includes the U.S. Department of Justice regulations for the prevention, detection and response to sexual misconduct in juvenile facilities as part of its implementation of the Prison Rape Elimination Act." Five sections are contained in this guide: introduction; about the revised JDAI Detention Facility Assessment Standards; guidelines to conducting a facility assessment; facility assessment "How To" tools which provide practical recommendations for reviewing written documents and other materials, observing, and interviewing youth and staff at the facility according to each section of the standards; and JDAI Detention Facility Assessment Standards (Revised June 2014)—classification and intake, health and mental health care, access, programming, training and supervision, environment, restraints/room confinement/due process and grievances, safety, and glossary.

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  • Swift, Certain, & Fair

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    Swift, Certain, & Fair

    This is an excellent website for learning about this innovative approach to reducing recidivism. "About one-third of probationers and parolees fail the terms of their supervision. Over three-quarters of parolees are re-arrested within five years, and over half return to prison. High failure rates for people on probation and parole—whether for new offenses, revocations, or individuals who abscond from supervision—result in increased crime, crowded prisons and jails, and strained public budgets … Why Swift Certain and Fair? Because—if the conditions are right—a SCF program can take high-risk individuals in your jurisdiction and substantially reduce their drug use, revocation and re-arrest rates, and the subsequent reliance on incarceration." Points of entry contained on this website are: why SCF; current programs; ingredients for success; stakeholders' roles; and what's happening now.

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  • Controversy, Litigation and Performance Problems Plague Private Probation Services

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    Controversy, Litigation and Performance Problems Plague Private Probation Services

    This is a good overview of the problems inherent in private probation. Sections cover: the controversy—probation for profit; litigation against private probation companies; and performance problems reported.

    Web Page
  • Desktop Guide to Quality Practice for Working with Youth in Confinement

    Desktop Guide to Quality Practice for Working with Youth in Confinement Cover
    Desktop Guide to Quality Practice for Working with Youth in Confinement

    Recent successful juvenile justice and juvenile detention reforms have resulted in better and more meaningful public policy on the use of custody facilities and have triggered significant reductions in juvenile detention and corrections populations. However, a secondary—and perhaps unintended—consequence has been a parallel reduction in the resources available to continue providing much needed training and technical assistance to facilities that still must confine the most troublesome youth. As history continues to show, juvenile detention and corrections remain the “forgotten” elements of the juvenile justice system. We now must add adult facilities that are responsible for the care and custody of youthful offenders to this list of isolated elements …

    "The purpose of the Desktop Guide is to provide practitioners—line staff, supervisors, and administrators—along the various points on the youth-custody continuum with an operational resource that describes promising and effective practices that are rooted in theory and tested by research. Accordingly, the Desktop Guide will serve as a core resource for staff development and training as well as for academic course work …

    "The Desktop Guide has two parts. Part I: Principles and Concepts explores the background principles, concepts, and knowledge at the core of juvenile justice and services for youth in confinement. Part II: Daily Practice identifies what is quality practice, including the skills needed to effectively serve youth in confinement."

    Part I: Principles and Concepts contains: Chapter 1: Historical Perspective, by Michele Deitch, J.D., M.Sc., in partnership with a number of her students at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, University of Texas, Austin; Chapter 2: Types of Facilities, by Pam Clark, MSM, LSW, CYC-P; Chapter 3: Physical Plant Design and Operations, by Jim Moeser; Chapter 4: Developing and Maintaining a Professional Workforce, by Pam Clark; Chapter 5: Rights and Responsibilities, by Michael Umpierre, Esq.; Chapter 6: Adolescent Development, by Rodney Erwin, MD; and Chapter 7: Emerging Issues, by Charles Kehoe.

    Part II: Daily Practice contains: Chapter 8: Management and Facility Administration, by Anne M. Nelsen, MSW, MPA; Chapter 9: Admission and Intake, by Anne Nelsen; Chapter 10: Effective Programs and Services, by Wayne Liddell in collaboration with Kathy Starkovich, M.S., and Pam Clark; Chapter 11: Mental Health, by Lisa Boesky, MD; Chapter 12: Healthcare, by Michelle Staples-Horne, MD, MS, MPH, CCHP; Chapter 13: Education, by Randall W.Farmer, M.Ed., in collaboration with Carol Cramer Brooks; Chapter 14: Behavior Management, by Michele Deitch; Chapter 15: Service and Treatment Plans, by Dr. Nelson Griffis, Ph.D., LMSW, in collaboration with Jennifer Sloan, MSM, Wayne R. Liddell, and James Moeser; Chapter 16: Behavior Observation, Recording, and Report Writing, by Anne Nelsen; Chapter 17: Quality Assurance, by Kelly Dedel. Ph.D.; Chapter 18: Transition Planning and Reentry, by Joyce Burrell; and Chapter 19: Challenging and Vulnerable Populations, by a panel of experts and professionals.

    Web Page
  • Disproportionate Minority Contact in the Juvenile Justice System

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    Disproportionate Minority Contact in the Juvenile Justice System

    "Despite positive trends regarding juvenile interactions with the justice system, racial disparities remain as a persistent problem. African-American youth comprise 17 percent of the population, but comprise 31 percent of all arrested youth. This briefing paper explains how disproportionate minority contact (DMC) with the juvenile justice system is measured and takes a close look at drug offenses, property crimes, and status offenses. Racial disparities weaken the credibility of a justice system that purports to treat everyone equally." Sections cover: what "contact" is; the extent of the problem; measuring DMC using the Relative Rate Index (RRI); encounters with the justice system—disproportionate arrest rates for status offenders, property crime arrests, and drug offenses; how policy choices worsen disparities—school discipline as a law enforcement issue, valid court order (VCO), and geography and population density; disproportionate minority confinement—RRI for pre- and post-adjudication detention and placement; and eliminating disproportionate minority contact by reauthorizing and strengthening the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA).

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  • Measuring Juvenile Recidivism: Data Collection and Reporting Practices in Juvenile Corrections

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    Measuring Juvenile Recidivism: Data Collection and Reporting Practices in Juvenile Corrections

    "Reducing recidivism is a key indicator of success for juvenile corrections agencies." This interactive map is an excellent resource for finding out about juvenile offender recidivism across the United States. Information provided for each responding state shows its definition of recidivism (measure(s) of reoffending, length of follow up, and whether offenders are followed in to the criminal justice system), how performance (recidivism) is measured (compare to previous year release cohorts, and compare rates by offender risk), reporting (frequency of reporting, and target audience), and the source of the state's data. One may get all the information provided in the interactive tool in one PDF table.

    Web Page
  • A Review of Probation Home Visits: What Do We Know?

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    A Review of Probation Home Visits: What Do We Know?

    "Although home visits are seen as a critical tool employed by probation officers, recent evidence demonstrates that home visits are rarely conducted, even for high-risk offenders who might benefit from them the most … Because there are costs (such as probation officer time and safety risks) associated with conducting field work, we need to understand the role of home visits in modern probation agencies and determine best practices of how they should be implemented to meet intended goals. This article highlights the historical importance of home visits as a key element of probation and suggests future avenues to inform the field about their full potential and utility" (p. 32). Sections cover: a brief history of probation—from rehabilitation to crime control and back again; the role of home visits in supporting probation goals; expansion of probation to higher-risk offenders—retaining a role for home visits; and addressing gaps in our knowledge about home visits—officer and offender goals for home visits, opening the "black box" of home visits, impact of home visits on family and communities, dosage—how often and how many home visits are needed, and desistance among high-risk offenders.

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  • TIP 59: Improving Cultural Competence

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    TIP 59: Improving Cultural Competence

    "The development of culturally responsive clinical skills is vital to the effectiveness of behavioral health services. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), cultural competence “refers to the ability to honor and respect the beliefs, languages, interpersonal styles, and behaviors of individuals and families receiving services, as well as staff members who are providing such services … This Treatment Improvement Protocol (TIP) uses Sue’s (2001) multidimensional model for developing cultural competence. Adapted to address cultural competence across behavioral health settings, this model serves as a frame-work for targeting three organizational levels of treatment: individual counselor and staff, clinical and programmatic, and organizational and administrative. The chapters target specific racial, ethnic, and cultural considerations along with the core elements of cultural competence highlighted in the model. These core elements include cultural awareness, general cultural knowledge, cultural knowledge of behavioral health, and cultural skill development. The primary objective of this TIP is to assist readers in understanding the role of culture in the delivery of behavioral health services (both generally and with reference to specific cultural groups)" (p. xv). These six chapters follow an executive summary: introduction to cultural competence; core competencies for counselors and other clinical staff; culturally responsible evaluation and treatment planning; preparing organizational cultural competence; behavioral health treatment for major racial and ethnic groups—African and Black Americans, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and other Pacific Islanders, Hispanics and Latinos, Native Americans, and White Americans ; drug cultures and culture of recovery. Appendixes included: Instruments to Measure Identity and Acculturation; Tools for Accessing Cultural Competence; Screening and Assessment Instruments; Cultural Formulation in Diagnosis and Cultural Concepts of Distress; Cultural Resources; and glossary.

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  • Issues in Defining and Applying Evidence-Based Practices Criteria for Treatment of Criminal-Justice Involved Clients

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    Issues in Defining and Applying Evidence-Based Practices Criteria for Treatment of Criminal-Justice Involved Clients

    If you are looking for an introduction to the use of evidence-based practice (EBP) in corrections based drug treatment, then this is for you. EBP "applies the principles and techniques of evidence-based decision making to interventions intended to improve, or ameliorate, the social or clinical problems of affected individuals, including offenders with drug abuse problems. This article provides a general overview of EBP, particularly as it applies to treatment and other interventions for offenders with problems involving drugs (including alcohol). The discussion includes a definition of EBP, notes the implications of using EBPs to make policy and clinical decisions, lists the various efforts by government and academic organizations to identify practices that can be considered evidence based, describes the criteria used by such organizations to evaluate programs as being evidence based, raises some cautions about the use of EBPs, and ends with some challenges in disseminating and implementing EBPs" (p. 10). Following an abstract, this article covers: a definition and implications; evidence-based practice initiatives; meta-analyses of treatment programs for offenders; limitations of randomized designs for evidence-based practices; challenges in disseminating and implementing EBPs; and EPBs having valid yet tentative knowledge about "what works".

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  • Body-Worn Cameras for Criminal Justice: Market Survey, Version 1.0

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    Body-Worn Cameras for Criminal Justice: Market Survey, Version 1.0

    "The use of body-worn cameras (BWCs) by criminal justice practitioners (e.g., patrol, corrections, SWAT and other tactical responders) offers potential advantages in keep¬ing officers safe, enabling situational awareness, improving community relations and accountability, and providing evidence for trial. These products are also sometimes called officer-worn or wearable cameras. In the last couple of years, there has been a dramatic increase in the criminal justice use, public and media attention and commercial offerings of BWCs. This market survey report aggregates and summarizes information on commercial BWCs to aid criminal justice practitioners considering planning, acquisition and implementation of the technology in their agency" (p. 1). Profiles are provided for 18 BWCs. Also included is the "BWC Technical Summary Comparison".

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  • Women's Risk Factors and New Treatments/Interventions for Addressing Them: Evidence-Based Interventions in the United States and Canada

    Women's Risk Factors and New Treatments/Interventions for Addressing Them: Evidence-Based Interventions in the United States and Canada Cover
    Women's Risk Factors and New Treatments/Interventions for Addressing Them: Evidence-Based Interventions in the United States and Canada

    This paper describes assessments of female offenders used by correctional agencies and the programs and resources provided by these agencies to meet female offenders' needs. "The two, assessments and programs/services go together. The assessments tell us what is needed and the programs address identified needs" (p. 43). Topics discussed include: gender-responsive risk assessments and the risk factors they identify; women's pathways to crime—child abuse pathway, relational pathway, and the social and human capital pathway; mental health, self-esteem and self-efficacy, and parental stress; risk factors by correctional setting—prisons, pre-release, and probation; translating the gender-specific research into practice; interventions for women offender populations; and the Gender-Informed Practices Assessment (GIPA) 12 domains.

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  • Locked Up In America: Solitary Nation

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    Locked Up In America: Solitary Nation

    If you are looking for a balanced approach to the use of solitary confinement by prisons then this program is for you. The strength of this film is that it presents an excellent look at the extremely difficult working conditions correctional officers face in managing inmates in segregation while it also shows why inmates end up in solitary and how inmates react to this segregation. Topics discussed include: the flooding of the unit; extraction of a self-abusive inmate who has seriously cut himself; reasons inmates are housed in segregation--judged too dangerous to be around other people, for their own protection, or for disruptive behavior; passing of notes between cells; cleaning/disinfecting a cell of blood; the use of solitary confinement as reform in the 1800s till it was determined it drove the prisoners mad; the reemergence of segregation in the 1980s to stamp out violence in institutions; states are rethinking use of segregation; senior prison staff concerns about releasing some of extremely dangerous inmates into the general population; inmate manipulation; the mental health unit; tough choices on who to release--leave inmates in too long potential to make them more disturbed, yet move out soon they could endanger staff, other prisoners, or themselves; and the step down unit transferring individuals from solitary to general population—beginning with a lot of restrictions that are reduced as good behavior is exhibited. This film contains scenes of self-harm and violence.

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  • Podcast: How to Fix America's Solitary Problem

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    Podcast: How to Fix America's Solitary Problem

    "Critics say it’s expensive, ineffective and even dangerous, but the U.S. puts more people in prolonged isolation than most other countries in the world. Now, some officials at the state and federal level are beginning to review the practice. FRONTLINE brought together some of these officials for a conversation about the use of solitary confinement in the state and federal prison system today. We wanted to understand what’s happening on the ground, what works, what doesn’t, and what the future looks like for America’s prisons." The corrections professionals involved in this roundtable are Jim Austin, Bob Hood, and Bernie Warner. Topics discussed include: how inmates get placed in segregated housing; litigation resulting in legislative changes; special administrative measures (SAMs); length of stay; release back into the general population; gang influence; and the future.

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  • What's the Evidence for Evidence-Based Practice?

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    What's the Evidence for Evidence-Based Practice?

    This article explains why one must be cautious with implementing an evidence-based program. You must "understand the basics of evaluation research, including the statistical methods used to generate evidence of program effectiveness. A study that reports statistically significant results is not necessarily evidence of effectiveness, and being evidence-based does not mean a program is guaranteed to work … understanding these basic principles of evaluation research is part of every practitioner’s job" (p. 1). This publication clarifies: how evaluation research is limited; statistics are not always significant; effect size is a better assessment metric than statistical significance—effect size combines substantive importance and statistical significance; and while evaluation research should play a role, it cannot utterly have the last word; and some programs will be effective but not evidence-based because there is not enough money to invest in determining the efficacy of every justice program.

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  • SAC Publication Digest

    SAC Publication Digest Cover
    SAC Publication Digest

    "The SAC Publication Digest is a comprehensive collection of abstracts of state Statistical Analysis Center (SAC) reports, including reports produced for the SACs by outside authors or organizations … The Digest briefly describes the research, data collection, evaluation, and analysis projects and programs of each SAC, and covers a wide array of justice topics and analysis approaches not available from any other source. The Digest is a resource for anyone concerned with understanding the current major justice issues, as well as the administration of justice, in the states. The SACs are units or agencies at the state government level that collect and analyze information from all components of the justice system to contribute to the development of sound public policies and assess their impact." The Digest is divided into two parts: one part containing abstracts organized alphabetically by state; and the other part having the items arranged by topic.

    Web Page
  • Critical Elements of Juvenile Reentry in Research and Practice

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    Critical Elements of Juvenile Reentry in Research and Practice

    The research on “what works” with youth involved in the juvenile justice system has grown substantially in the last two decades. Taking account of this new research, a number of states and jurisdictions have made significant changes to their juvenile justice policies and practices. To further this pursuit, this article offers guidance that draws from the most recent research and promising practices based on the new evidence. This article focuses primarily on juvenile justice policies and practices for youth returning to their communities from out-of-home placements (e.g., secure confinement, residential placements). Topics discussed include: the reentry continuum; overarching case management; and six critical elements of juvenile reentry. Addition information and program examples are provided for each of the six elements—assessment of risk for reoffending, strengths, and needs; cognitive-behavioral interventions; family engagement; release readiness; permanency planning; and staffing and workforce competencies.

    Web Page
  • Presumption of Guilt: The Global Overuse of Pretrial Detention

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    Presumption of Guilt: The Global Overuse of Pretrial Detention

    "Around the world, millions are effectively punished before they are tried. Legally entitled to be considered innocent and released pending trial, many accused are instead held in pretrial detention, where they are subjected to torture, exposed to life threatening disease, victimized by violence, and pressured for bribes. It is literally worse than being convicted: pretrial detainees routinely experience worse conditions than sentenced prisoners. The suicide rate among pretrial detainees is three times higher than among convicted prisoners, and ten times that of the outside community. Pretrial detention harms individuals, families, and communities; wastes state resources and human potential; and undermines the rule of law … Presumption of Risk examines the full consequences of the global overuse of pretrial detention. Combining statistical analysis, first-person accounts, graphics, and case studies of successful reforms, the report is the first to comprehensively document this widespread but frequently ignored form of human rights abuse." Sections following the Executive Summary and Recommendations are: introduction; the scope of pretrial detention around the world—its extent and cost; who the world's pretrial detainees are; circumstances of detention and impact on detainees and their communities; the causes of arbitrary and excessive use of pretrial detention; the implications for the rule of law; reducing the arbitrary and excessive use of pretrial detention; and conclusion.

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  • Measuring and Using Juvenile Recidivism Data to Inform Policy, Practice, and Resource Allocation

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    Measuring and Using Juvenile Recidivism Data to Inform Policy, Practice, and Resource Allocation

    "To understand to what extent states currently track recidivism data for youth involved in the juvenile justice system and use that information to inform policy and funding decisions, the Council of State Governments Justice Center, The Pew Charitable Trusts’ Public Safety Performance Project, and the Council of Juvenile Correctional Administrators surveyed juvenile correctional agencies in all 50 states. This issue brief highlights the key findings of the survey and provides state and local policymakers with five recommendations for improving their approach to the measurement, analysis, collection, reporting, and use of recidivism data for youth involved with the juvenile justice system. In addition, examples are provided of how select states have translated these recommendations into policy and practice" (p. 1).

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  • Policy Implications of Police-Probation/Parole Partnerships: A Review of the Empirical Literature

    Policy Implications of Police-Probation/Parole Partnerships: A Review of the Empirical Literature Cover
    Policy Implications of Police-Probation/Parole Partnerships: A Review of the Empirical Literature

    This article examines the benefits and challenges of interagency collaboration between law enforcement and community corrections. "The primary assumption of these programs is that both entities possess distinct intelligence and resources that if combined should better address, prevent, or intervene in the violence perpetuated by this criminogenic population" (p. 2). Sections cover: history of police-probation/parole partnerships; research and evaluation on partnerships; problems associated with partnership; and seven recommendations for policy and practice on police-probation/parole partnerships.

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  • Colorado Reference Guide: Juvenile Screening and Assessment Instruments: Behavioral Health, Trauma, and Risk/Classification

    Colorado Reference Guide: Juvenile Screening and Assessment Instruments: Behavioral Health, Trauma, and Risk/Classification Cover
    Colorado Reference Guide: Juvenile Screening and Assessment Instruments: Behavioral Health, Trauma, and Risk/Classification

    "One of the most important elements in any service delivery system is the identification of needs, risks and strengths of children, youth and families. The accurate screening and assessment of these individuals and family systems are necessary to develop appropriate, individualized service packages. The use of valid screening and assessment tools will assure that safety risks (either to the public or the youth) are identified accurately and appropriate interventions are implemented, that urgent needs are recognized and dealt with quickly, and that services provided will likely result in positive outcomes … Specifically, the decision to include each instrument is based on the following: 1) The instrument must be directly related to behavioral health, trauma and/or risk classification; and 2) The instrument must be age and developmentally appropriate; and 3) The instrument must be quantitative; and 4) The instrument must be researched-based; and 5) The instrument must have empirical evidence that supports its utility. All screening and assessment instruments in this reference guide have acceptable reliability and validity data associated with them and all have, to some degree, been independently evaluated" (p. 4). There are 12 juvenile screening instruments and 11 juvenile assessment instruments described. Information provided for each instrument is: a brief description of the instrument; the Colorado agency using it; the juvenile population being targeted; the instrument's purpose; when the instrument is administered; the decisions that can be made using the instrument; skills needed by those who give the assessment or screening; training required by this person; cost; and contact information with website (if available).

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  • Rethinking the Use of Community Supervision

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    Rethinking the Use of Community Supervision

    "This Article examines the reasons why community supervision so often fails and challenges popular assumptions about the role community supervision should play in efforts to reduce overreliance on imprisonment. While probation and post-release supervision serve important purposes in many cases, they are often imposed on the wrong people and executed in ways that predictably lead to revocation" (p. 1015). Six sections make up this article: introduction; history and structures of community supervision—probation and post-release supervision; the dynamics of revocation—conditions of release, methods of supervision, and responses to rule violations; responses to the problem of revocation; the different approach of limiting community supervision—limiting the sanction, limiting release conditions, and limiting terms of supervision; and conclusion.

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  • Race and Punishment: Racial Perceptions of Crime and Support for Punitive Policies

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    Race and Punishment: Racial Perceptions of Crime and Support for Punitive Policies

    "To guide and give greater momentum to recent calls for reform, this report examines a key driving force of criminal justice outcomes: racial perceptions of crime. A complex set of factors contributes to the severity and selectivity of punishment in the United States, including public concern about crime and racial differences in crime rates. This report synthesizes two decades of research establishing that skewed racial perceptions of crime – particularly, white Americans’ strong associations of crime with racial minorities – have bolstered harsh and biased criminal justice policies" (p. 3). Eight sections follow an executive summary: introduction; public support for punitive policies—historical changes in punitive sentiment, and the racial gaps in punitiveness and victimization; racial perceptions of crime—overestimating Black and Hispanic crime rates, and implicit biases against people of color; racial perceptions of crime linked to punitiveness; sources of racial perceptions of crime; punitiveness linked to other racial gaps in views and experiences—Whites' limited and favorable criminal justice contact, racial prejudice, and individualistic accounts of crime; consequences of a biased and punitive criminal justice system—eroded perceived legitimacy, and undermining public safety; and remedies and recommendations for the media and researchers, policymakers, and practitioners and other stakeholders.

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  • The Impact of Family Visitation on Incarcerated Youth's Behavior and School Performance: Findings from the Families as Partners Project

    The Impact of Family Visitation on Incarcerated Youth's Behavior and School Performance: Findings from the Families as Partners Project Cover
    The Impact of Family Visitation on Incarcerated Youth's Behavior and School Performance: Findings from the Families as Partners Project

    The relationships between family visitation and an incarcerated youth's behavior and performance in school are examined. The project studied was Families as Partners, a collaboration between the Vera Institute and Ohio Department of Youth Services (DYS). Sections of this brief include: introduction; background about the collaboration; data and methodology for this study; findings regarding the impact of visitation on behavior and school performance—youth characteristics, family contact frequency, behavior incidents, and school performance; and conclusion. "Vera researchers found that family visitation of incarcerated youth was associated with improved behavior and school performance. These findings highlight the importance of visitation and suggest that juvenile correctional facilities should try to change their visitation policies and related practices to promote more frequent visitation with families" (p. 1).

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  • Through Their Eyes: How Prisoners Make Sense of Their Incarceration

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    Through Their Eyes: How Prisoners Make Sense of Their Incarceration

    This is an excellent article if you want to understand how inmates feel about incarceration. "A new theoretical framework looks at punishment from the prisoner's perspective and reveals how the lived experience of punishment differs from the punishment conceived by lawmaker" (p. 1). Sections cover: what punishment is; the salience and severity of punishment; narratives of penal consciousness; the role of supervision style and gender; and potential policy implications.

    Web Page
  • A Comparison of Risk Assessment Instruments in Juvenile Justice

    A Comparison of Risk Assessment Instruments in Juvenile Justice Cover
    A Comparison of Risk Assessment Instruments in Juvenile Justice

    This study examined the validity, reliability, equity, and cost of nine juvenile justice risk assessment instruments. Though many researchers and practitioners believe that risk assessment is critical to improving decision making in the juvenile justice system, the range of options currently available makes the selection of the most appropriate instrument for each jurisdiction a difficult choice. This study was designed to provide a comprehensive examination of how several risk assessments perform in practice (p. 1). Findings are reported: according to eight risk assessment instruments; and through a comparison of results across jurisdictions and assessments by way of reliability, validity, equity, revised risk assessment instruments constructed in the study, and efficiency and cost. A discussion covers: instruments developed for general use; risk instruments developed for a specific agency; and comments from Advisory Board members and responses from the authors of this report. Risk assessment should be a simple process that can be easily understood and articulated. This study’s findings show that simple, actuarial approaches to risk assessment can produce the strongest results. Adding factors with relatively weak statistical relationships to recidivism—including dynamic factors and criminogenic needs—can result in reduced capacity to accurately identify high-, moderate-, and low-risk offenders (p. vi).

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  • Disproportionate Minority Contact and Status Offenses

    Disproportionate Minority Contact and Status Offenses Cover
    Disproportionate Minority Contact and Status Offenses

    This report looks at the significant overrepresentation of minority youth among juvenile status offenders. Sections of this publication includes: issue background; the need to focus on non-delinquent youth; addressing disproportionality among status offenders; new data on status offenses and disproportionality; and implications for juvenile justice reform.

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  • The Hawaii Opportunity Probation with Enforcement Project: A Potentially Worthwhile Correctional Reform

    The Hawaii Opportunity Probation with Enforcement Project: A Potentially Worthwhile Correctional Reform Cover
    The Hawaii Opportunity Probation with Enforcement Project: A Potentially Worthwhile Correctional Reform

    “Probation is a long-standing feature of the criminal justice system and is found in every state. Unfortunately, however, probation has not been as successful as its original proponents hoped that it would be: Approximately one-third of offenders placed on probation wind up in prison or abscond. In 2004, a Hawaii state court judge developed a new way of managing probationers that has shown the promise of reforming offenders and reducing costs borne by the criminal justice system and the public. That project—known as Hawaii Opportunity Probation with Enforcement, or HOPE—uses a fundamentally different approach to traditional probation supervision. The federal and state governments should look to this program as a potentially valuable criminal justice reform” (p. 1). HOPE uses a swift and certain consequence for a violation of a probationer’s conditions for release. This has been shown to promote a greater degree of deterrence in the offender. Sections that follow an abstract are: key points; traditional probation; the HOPE project; areas for reform; and conclusion.

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  • "Swift and Certain" Sanctions in Probation Are Highly Effective: Evaluation of the HOPE Program

    "Swift and Certain" Sanctions in Probation Are Highly Effective: Evaluation of the HOPE Program Cover
    "Swift and Certain" Sanctions in Probation Are Highly Effective: Evaluation of the HOPE Program

    “The HOPE program — Hawaii's Opportunity Probation with Enforcement — is an experimental probation program that emphasizes the delivery of "swift and certain" punishment when a probationer violates conditions of probation.” Sections of this brief cover; the positive effects of swift and certain sanctions; how HOPE works; why HOPE effectively reduces probation violations; the impact of HOPE on courts and officers of the courts—process evaluation; and additional research is needed. At the one year mark, 61% of probationers are less likely to skip meetings with their probation officers, and 53% are less likely to have their probation revoked.

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  • Criminal Stigma, Race, Gender, and Employment: An Expanded Assessment of the Consequences of Imprisonment for Employment

    Criminal Stigma, Race, Gender, and Employment: An Expanded Assessment of the Consequences of Imprisonment for Employment Cover
    Criminal Stigma, Race, Gender, and Employment: An Expanded Assessment of the Consequences of Imprisonment for Employment

    This report provides a very good look at how criminal records, race, and gender impact chances for employment. Sections following an executive summary cover: prisoner reentry and employment; race and the criminal justice system; stereotyping racial minorities and the unemployed; crime and employment; finding work in an era of mass incarceration; women, criminal records, and finding employment after prison; focus and research methods using an on-line job application, in-person application, and an employer survey; results according to females, male, and employers; and critical policy considerations regarding the role of the internet in applying for a job, the job interview, job training, and preparation for work, and expanding social capital for former inmates. "Consistent with prior research, we find differences by race/ethnicity, with blacks and Hispanics generally faring more poorly than whites. The differences for the online application process were not as large as for the in person process, but, nonetheless, we did find that a prison record has a dampening effect on job prospects, particularly in the low-skill food service sector, where ex-prisoners are likely to seek employment during reentry. The employer survey revealed strong effects for criminal justice involvement, with employers expressing preferences for hiring individuals with no prior criminal justice contact" (p. 1-2).

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  • Young Women of Color with Criminal Records: A Barrier to Economic Stability for Low-Income Families and Communities

    Young Women of Color with Criminal Records: A Barrier to Economic Stability for Low-Income Families and Communities Cover
    Young Women of Color with Criminal Records: A Barrier to Economic Stability for Low-Income Families and Communities

    “Over the past few years, young women of color have been represented at a disproportionately high rate among clients coming to Community Legal Services (CLS) for help with barriers to employment caused by criminal records. This is particularly notable, as the vast majority of research, programming, and policy attention regarding criminal records and barriers to employment have focused on men. The impact of criminal records on young women seeking employment has largely been overlooked” (p. 2). This publication presents data showing the degree to which minority women are impacted by their past criminal records. Sections cover: issue overview; observations from CLS’s experiences with young female clients; local and national trends in arrest data, by gender; characteristics of women with criminal records; impact on employment; and five policy recommendations to address long-term joblessness of female offenders.

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  • OJJDP MPG Literature Review: LGBTQ Youths in the Juvenile Justice System

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    OJJDP MPG Literature Review: LGBTQ Youths in the Juvenile Justice System

    Youths’ sexual orientations and gender identities are complex. Youths experience an ongoing process of sexual development as they mature into young adults. Adolescence presents a time in people’s lives when they are unsure of themselves and begin to question who they are … Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youths may present unique challenges in the juvenile justice system. Research has shown that LGBTQ youths are more likely to confront certain barriers and environmental risk factors connected to their sexual orientations and gender identities (p. 1). This literature review is an excellent introduction to issues surrounding LGBTQ juvenile offenders. Sections of this document include: definitions; the number of LGBTQ youth in the juvenile justice system; risk and protective factors; LGBTQ youth in the juvenile justice system; outcome evidence; recommendations to reform policies and practices; and conclusion.

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  • Breaking Down Mass Incarceration in the 2010 Census: State-by-State Incarceration Rates by Race/Ethnicity

    Breaking Down Mass Incarceration in the 2010 Census: State-by-State Incarceration Rates by Race/Ethnicity Cover
    Breaking Down Mass Incarceration in the 2010 Census: State-by-State Incarceration Rates by Race/Ethnicity

    "Social science research has time and again come to the robust conclusion that exposure to the criminal justice system has profound and intergenerational negative effects on communities that experience disproportionate incarceration rates. It is imperative that we are able to measure the extent to which the criminal justice system disparately impacts our communities." You can find this information easily by referring to this briefing. It does an excellent job in synthesizing the information that is known about the disproportion of incarcerated minorities in the United States at the state level. In addition to incarceration rates by race/ethnicity, the following statistics (if available) are provided for each state and the U.S. federal prison system for the period 1978-2012: the degree to which Whites are underrepresented in the particular state's prisons and jails; Hispanics are overrepresented; Blacks are overrepresented; American Indians are overrepresented; Native Hawaiians are overrepresented.

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  • Beyond Risk and Needs Assessments

    Beyond Risk and Needs Assessments Cover
    Beyond Risk and Needs Assessments

    “Most assessment systems target high-risk offenders. However, standard risk and needs assessments do not necessarily identify needs that are truly criminogenic for each individual; nor do they address responsivity. This is because these systems do not inherently identify either specific strategies and programs that reflect the learning style of the offender or approaches and programs most likely to motivate each offender to change behavior. This paper describes a comprehensive approach to assessment, developed by the National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD), that successfully addresses all three objectives listed above. This methodology was originally embedded in the Client Management Classification (CMC) system and Strategies for Juvenile Supervision (SJS) assessment and supervision systems. It currently is embedded in the Correctional Assessment and Intervention System (CAIS) and Juvenile Assessment and Intervention System (JAIS) … Evaluation outcomes from six separate studies have shown that this methodology significantly reduces recidivism for both probationers and parolees and reduces institutional infractions when used in institutional settings. Results from these studies, which were conducted by different research teams in different jurisdictions across a 25-year timeframe, are summarized in this paper.” Sections included in this report are: introduction; what separates CAIS and JAIS from other assessment models; how CMC and SJS were developed; evaluations of CMC; the Texas Study, 1987; the Wisconsin Study, 1986; Council of State Governments, 2011; the emergence of CAIS and JAIS; supervision strategies; enhancing responsivity through case planning; and conclusion.

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  • Facilitating Health Care Coverage for Juvenile Justice-Involved Youth

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    Facilitating Health Care Coverage for Juvenile Justice-Involved Youth

    “As states and juvenile justice stakeholders work to facilitate health coverage and access for system-involved youth, they can draw upon the experiences of their counterparts across the country to improve eligibility, enrollment, and outreach processes. Medicaid eligibility strategies in several states have already facilitated seamless coverage for juvenile justice-involved youth, and consumer assistance programs created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) will provide additional resources to support continuity of care. Collaboration among Medicaid and juvenile justice systems and stakeholders will be essential to fully realizing the opportunities presented by health care reform.” Sections of this brief cover: the issue of Medicaid coverage for justice-involved youth; innovations—Medicaid eligibility options (suspending eligibility, continuous eligibility, and presumptive eligibility), expedited Medicaid enrollment, and outreach; lessons learned; and looking forward.

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  • Arrested Development: Confinement Can Negatively Affect Youth Maturation

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    Arrested Development: Confinement Can Negatively Affect Youth Maturation

    Anyone working with juvenile offenders should read this. It reviews a recent study regarding the impact of incarceration on the development of a juvenile’s psychosocial maturity--the combined abilities of impulse control (temperance), perspective (especially seeing from different points of view), and responsibility. Sections of this brief cover: general information about this study; research findings showing that incarceration of juveniles provides “no bang for our buck”—that placing youth in secure facilities slows their maturation, negative institutional settings harms youth’s maturation, and why short term slowing of maturation should be important to us; and policy implications. “The study finds statistically significant, short-term declines in psychosocial maturity for youth incarcerated in a secure facility. This period of lower maturity level means that youth may be more impulsive and susceptible to negative peer influence upon release, placing them at higher risk for re-arrest” (p. 1).

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  • Core Principles for Reducing Recidivism and Improving Other Outcomes for Youth in the Juvenile Justice System

    Core Principles for Reducing Recidivism and Improving Other Outcomes for Youth in the Juvenile Justice System Cover
    Core Principles for Reducing Recidivism and Improving Other Outcomes for Youth in the Juvenile Justice System

    "The best way to help prevent a youth’s subsequent contact with the juvenile justice system is to prevent him or her from being involved with the system in the first place. The field has been engaged in significant efforts to divert status offenders and other low-risk youth from ever coming into contact with the system. The focus of this white paper is on what works to promote successful reentry for those youth who are under the supervision of a juvenile justice system, which encompasses a process that begins the moment any youth comes into contact with the system, no matter how brief or at what level, to support their successful transition from supervision to a crime-free and productive adulthood" (p. 3). This white paper is divided into two parts. Part One—Policies and Practices That Reduce Recidivism and Improve Other Youth Outcomes: Principle 1--base supervision, service, and resource-allocation decisions on the results of validated risk and needs assessments; Principle 2--adopt and effectively implement programs and services demonstrated to reduce recidivism and improve other youth outcomes, and use data to evaluate system performance and direct system improvements; Principle 3--employ a coordinated approach across service systems to address youth’s needs; and Principle 4--tailor system policies, programs, and supervision to reflect the distinct developmental needs of adolescents. Part Two—Key Implementation Strategies, Structures, and Supports: Principle 1--base supervision, service, and resource-allocation decisions on the results of validated risk and needs assessments; Principle 2-- adopt and effectively implement programs and services demonstrated to reduce recidivism and improve other youth outcomes, and use data to evaluate system performance and direct system improvements; Principle 3--employ a coordinated approach across service systems to address youth’s needs; and Principle 4--tailor system policies, programs, and supervision to reflect the distinct developmental needs of adolescents.

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  • Civil Liability for the Use of Pepper Spray (OC), Tear Gas, and Chemical Agents, Part 1 [and] Part 2

    Civil Liability for the Use of Pepper Spray (OC), Tear Gas, and Chemical Agents, Part 1 [and] Part 2 Cover
    Civil Liability for the Use of Pepper Spray (OC), Tear Gas, and Chemical Agents, Part 1 [and] Part 2

    This article is an excellent resource for those who want a basic understanding of those civil issues impacting the use of pepper spray and other chemical agents by law enforcement and correctional officers. "Pepper Spray (OC) and other chemical weapons are intended and designed to be used as disabling agents, for law enforcement officers and correctional personnel to use to attempt to overcome resistance, and to subdue persons with minimal injuries to officers, arrestees and others. Chemical weapons can be used in situations in which a disturbance involves a number of people, but they also are effective against an actively resisting individual. This is not a technical article, and it does not survey the wide variety of specific chemical weapons available to law enforcement and correctional personnel, or to assess their pros and cons. Rather, the focus is to briefly look at how courts have discussed their use in the context of civil lawsuits for excessive force" (Part 1, p. 101). Sections of this article include: introduction; use by law enforcement, use on handcuffed persons; warnings; crowds and bystanders; the aftermath of their use; New Orleans Consent Decree; correctional settings; and suggestions to consider.

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  • Cost-Benefit Analysis: A Guide for Drug Courts and Other Criminal Justice Programs

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    Cost-Benefit Analysis: A Guide for Drug Courts and Other Criminal Justice Programs

    "As resource constraints have tightened, the role of researchers in informing evidence-based and cost-effective decisions about the use of funds, labor, materials and equipment — and even the skills of workers — has increased. We [the authors] believe research that can inform decisions about resource allocation will be a central focus of criminal justice research in the years to come, with cost-benefit analysis (CBA) among the key tools" (p. 3). This is required reading for those individuals tasked with determining what the social impact of a criminal justice program will be (whether a benefit or not). It must be stressed that a CBA estimates social benefits not fiscal savings. This report is comprised of three sections: the basics of cost-benefit analysis—what and why, considerations in valuing time, what CBA can and can't do, and the four steps of a CBA; cost-benefit analysis in action—NIJ's Multi-site Adult Drug Court Evaluation (MADCE); and results from the MADCE cost-benefit analysis.

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  • Civil Liability for the Use of Neck Restraints

    › Civil Liability for the Use of Neck Restraints Cover
    Civil Liability for the Use of Neck Restraints

    Neck restraints are a valuable but sometimes still controversial procedure for the use of force by police officers and correctional personnel … It is a procedure that is useful when police or correctional officers are in close proximity with suspects or prisoners. While it can be very effective, it requires motor skills training, and attempts at such holds without proper training can turn an improperly applied hold into an air choke. This is especially the case when a subject attempts to resist the hold, such as by attempting to turn around, inadvertently putting pressure on their airway when none was intended … Improperly applied neck restraints that turn into choke holds and restrict the intake of breath can and have in some instances resulted in tragic consequences including death or permanent disability” (p. 101-102). This two-part article looks at the liability issues related to neck restraint use. It is comprised of the following sections: introduction; the U.S. Supreme Court ruling regarding “City of Los Angeles v. Lyons” and aftermath; subsequent law enforcement cases; neck restraints in correctional settings; the 2007 study by the Canadian Police Research Centre; and suggestions to consider.

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  • Inventory of Evidence-Based and Research-Based Programs for Adult Corrections

    Inventory of Evidence-Based and Research-Based Programs for Adult Corrections Cover
    Inventory of Evidence-Based and Research-Based Programs for Adult Corrections

    Evidence-based and research-based programs to be used by adult corrections in Washington State are inventoried. Three parts comprise this report: definitions—evidence-based, research-based, and cost-beneficial; updated reviews using a three-step research process (evidence, benefits and costs, and risk), effective practices in community corrections, sex offender treatment, and conclusion; and the inventory. “WSIPP identified two programs—sex offender treatment and EPICS—that were not previously included in WSIPP’s evidence- and research-based results. Our updated findings on the two topics in this report allowed us to incorporate the results in the adult corrections inventory. The weight of the evidence indicates that sex offender treatment, delivered in confinement or in the community, is evidence-based and generates benefits that exceed costs. Our findings on EPICS [Effective Practices in Community Supervision], however, are not as clear cut. While we find supervision based on RNR principles is effective, the evidence on the particular approach—EPICS—is still undetermined until further research becomes available” (p. 5-6).

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  • Oregon Prison Tackles Solitary Confinement with Blue Room Experiment

    Oregon Prison Tackles Solitary Confinement with Blue Room Experiment Cover
    Oregon Prison Tackles Solitary Confinement with Blue Room Experiment

    Your agency might consider this amazingly innovative strategy or a similar one for addressing mental health in your supermax or administrative segregation units. "Prison officials across the United States have spent the last few years debating how to help tens of thousands of prisoners cope in solitary confinement, the housing of last resort for violent, combative, or escape-prone inmates. Many human rights groups condemn the highly restrictive cells as an incubator for mental illness. About 19 months ago, Snake River officials turned for help from an offbeat source, a globetrotting forest ecologist more familiar with the canopies of Costa Rica's rainforests than the internal struggles of prisoners kept month after month in isolated quarters. What emerged was a one-of-a-kind sanctuary known as the Blue Room. Inside a converted recreation room, prisoners deprived of wind and sunsets and trees can reconnect with sights and sounds of the natural world. A video projector casts images against a wall: Big Sur, a brook in a dark forest, a tropical beach and 30 other nature videos. The plan to calm prisoners and make them less violent shows promise." This article explains how a 5-minute TED (Technology, Education, Design) talk by Nalini Nadkarni resulted in the development and implementation of the Blue Room which is located in the IMU (Intensive Management Unit) – a 20 tier contained section of the Snake River Correctional Institution. The costs for this program run about $1,500. While the data is preliminary, the rate of disciplinary infractions is higher for those inmates who did not use the Blue Room compared to the rate for those inmates who did.

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  • Case Study: New York City Department of Probation’s Federal Partnership Efforts: Profile of a Successful Technical Assistance Collaboration With the Bureau of Justice Assistance and the National Institute of Corrections

    Case Study: New York City Department of Probation’s Federal Partnership Efforts: Profile of a Successful Technical Assistance Collaboration With the Bureau of Justice Assistance and the National Institute of Corrections Cover
    Case Study: New York City Department of Probation’s Federal Partnership Efforts: Profile of a Successful Technical Assistance Collaboration With the Bureau of Justice Assistance and the National Institute of Corrections

    "The New York City Department of Probation (DOP)—the second largest probation department in the country—is advancing a process to infuse evidence-based policies and practices (EBPP) throughout the organization … What is significant for the purpose of this story is that the Federal agencies were able to thoughtfully, strategically, respectfully, and effectively apply the right dosage of technical assistance to the moving train in a way that made the most of the investment and the capacity that BJA and NIC had to marshal for the city" (p. 3-4). This brief explains how the NYC DOP Adult Operations Division partnered with the U.S. Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) and the National Institute of Correction (NIC) to create an organizational culture within the division that was committed to using evidence-based practices. Lessons learned from this collaboration are also covered. This document is comprised of six sections: what the BJA and NIC technical assistance providers worked on with DOP, and how their work fit with other pilot programs, initiatives, and philanthropic support; what is unique about DOP from the perspective of Federal agencies that engage in technical assistance with local agencies; what is unique about what the partners brought to the table, what kind of technical assistance approach they developed together, and how it was managed and delivered; how the Federal agencies’ technical assistance advanced DOP’s EBPP goals; where New York City’s DOP evidence-based practice work is taking the department; and conclusion--what the rest of the field can learn from the DOP, BJA, and NIC technical assistance collaborative partnership, and why it does matter.

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  • Tracking State Prison Growth in 50 States

    Tracking State Prison Growth in 50 States Cover
    Tracking State Prison Growth in 50 States

    If you are looking for an excellent primer on the use of incarceration in the United States, you need to read this. "Over the last three decades of the 20th century, the United States engaged in an unprecedented prison-building boom that has given our nation the highest incarceration rate in the world. Among people with experience in criminal justice policy matters, the “hockey stick curve” of the national incarceration rate is well known; but until now more detailed data on the incarceration rates for individual states has been harder to come by. This briefing fills the gap with a series of more than 100 graphs showing prison growth (and sometimes decline) for every state in the nation to encourage states to confront how their criminal policy choices undermine our national welfare." The webpage explains with text and easily understood graphics: state policies that drive mass incarceration; what's the critical difference between incarceration rates and incarceration numbers; state prison incarceration rates for select states and overall; and state prison incarceration states by region (greater use to least)—south, west, midwest, and northeast.

    This brief refers to the "50 State Incarceration Profiles" interactive map which is a great resource for seeing how the incarceration rate has grown over time and what racial disparities exist for each state.

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  • Juvenile Justice Information Exchange (JIIE)

    Juvenile Justice Information Exchange (JIIE) Cover
    Juvenile Justice Information Exchange (JIIE)

    This is the go to place for current information about juvenile justice issues. Anyone working with juvenile offenders should visit this website.

    "The Juvenile Justice Information Exchange (JJIE) is the only publication covering juvenile justice and related issues nationally on a consistent, daily basis. In the past, traditional journalism organizations filled this function. Today, due to shrinking resources, there are large gaps in that coverage. The Juvenile Justice Information Exchange fills the void. Focused not just on delivering information, but rather on an “exchange” of ideas, the Juvenile Justice Information Exchange fosters a community of support around the issues facing the youth of our country … Doing what is best for children means staying well informed on governmental policies and legislation, court rulings, educational trends, treatment, research, prevention programs and other factors that impact the quality of service delivered to the kids that need them most."

    Points of access at this website include: news—brain development, legislation, education, parenting, and the system; policy news; ideas and opinions; Bokeh—the JJIE Photo Blog (multimedia and young journalist reports); story series; and tweets.

    The crown jewel of this site is the Juvenile Justice Resource Hub. It provides "[r]eady access to reliable, accurate, curated information and analysis on juvenile justice issues" for the content areas of evidence-based practices, mental health and substance use disorders, community-based alternatives, juvenile indigent defense, and race-ethnic fairness. Each area contains sections on key issues, reform trends, resources, experts in the field, and a glossary.

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  • The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Exploring Causes and Consequences

    The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Exploring Causes and Consequences Cover
    The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Exploring Causes and Consequences

    "After decades of stability from the 1920s to the early 1970s, the rate of imprisonment in the United States more than quadrupled during the last four decades. The U.S. penal population of 2.2 million adults is by far the largest in the world. Just under one-quarter of the world's prisoners are held in American prisons. The U.S. rate of incarceration, with nearly 1 out of every 100 adults in prison or jail, is 5 to 10 times higher than the rates in Western Europe and other democracies. The U.S. prison population is largely drawn from the most disadvantaged part of the nation's population: mostly men under age 40, disproportionately minority, and poorly educated. Prisoners often carry additional deficits of drug and alcohol addictions, mental and physical illnesses, and lack of work preparation or experience. The growth of incarceration in the United States during four decades has prompted numerous critiques and a growing body of scientific knowledge about what prompted the rise and what its consequences have been for the people imprisoned, their families and communities, and for U.S. society. [The report] examines research and analysis of the dramatic rise of incarceration rates and its affects. This study makes the case that the United States has gone far past the point where the numbers of people in prison can be justified by social benefits and has reached a level where these high rates of incarceration themselves constitute a source of injustice and social harm."

    Chapters following an executive summary are: introduction; rising incarceration rates; policies and practices contributing to high rates of incarceration; the underlying causes of rising incarceration—crime, politics, and social change; the crime prevention effects of incarceration; the experience of imprisonment; consequences for health and mental health; consequences for employment and earnings; consequences for families and children; consequences for communities; wider consequences for U.S. society; the prison in society—values and principles; findings, conclusions, and implications.

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