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  • Municipal Courts: An Effective Tool for Diverting People with Mental and Substance Use Disorders from the Criminal Justice System

    Municipal Courts: An Effective Tool for Diverting People with Mental and Substance Use Disorders from the Criminal Justice System cover
    Municipal Courts: An Effective Tool for Diverting People with Mental and Substance Use Disorders from the Criminal Justice System

    The opportunity for diverting offenders with mental illness and substance abuse disorders from the criminal justice system when they have their first appearance in a municipal court is explained. Sections of this publication include: introduction; Sequential Intercept Model (SIM); municipal courts—definition and caseloads; municipal courts as a venue for diversion of people with mental and substance use disorders; challenges to the use of municipal courts for diversion—case volume, time constraints and lack of leverage, and the mature of municipal courts; what the essential elements for effective diversion are—identification and screening, court-based clinician as the boundary spanner-linkage component, recovery-based engagement strategies, and proportional response; a municipal court achieving effective diversion—Seattle Municipal Mental Health Court; a municipal court achieving effective diversion—Midtown Community Court in New York City; a municipal court achieving effective diversion—Misdemeanor Arraignment Diversion Project in New York City; and summary. "Municipal courts that implement these four essential elements—Identification and Screening, Court-Based Clinician, Recovery-Based Engagement, and Proportional Response—are in the position to minimize the criminal justice system involvement and reduce unnecessary incarceration of people with mental illness and co-occurring substance use disorders as well as facilitate engagement or re-engagement in mental health and substance use disorder services" (p. 12).

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  • Enhancing Care for Childbearing Women and their Babies in Prison

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    Enhancing Care for Childbearing Women and their Babies in Prison

    This report explains how mothers and their babies can benefit from being held in a prison-based Mother and Baby Unit (MBU). "All available research suggests that the struggles of childbearing women in prison are extremely complex. And whilst their babies represent a relatively small proportion of all children affected by maternal imprisonment, they are arguably the neediest and most vulnerable group. This report documents the findings of a collaborative research project … The project aimed to map current knowledge and research evidence on childbearing women in prison and their babies and to transfer this learning into policy and practice" (p. 5). Findings from this study cover: current provision for childbearing women in prison and their babies; decision-making and unavailability of MBU places; mother and baby relationship during MBU residence; what happens when mothers go to prison and do not secure an MBU place; mother and baby relationship when separation occurs; reentry (resettlement) and reunification issues—Re-Unite being a good practice example; impact of MBU residence on re-offending; the changing landscape of the female prison estate—custodial changes in prison hubs, and community changes; and concerns arising from the research. Some of the recommendations made include: "Effective and tailored alternative sentencing options for mothers of young children need to be available; … The benefits of MBUs need to be actively promoted to external staff, to mothers and also to non MBU prison staff; Mothers in prison need programmes which address self-esteem and healthy relationships; Intensive support packages, with a strong therapeutic focus should be put in place for women who have had their babies adopted, during the mother's prison sentence and continued post-release; … [and] Release from prison needs to be viewed as a process not as an event. The sentence planning of women prisoners who are also mothers needs to include parenting support on release and a 'whole family' approach where appropriate" (p. 5).

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  • Bring Youth Home: Building on Ohio's Deincarceration Leadership

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    Bring Youth Home: Building on Ohio's Deincarceration Leadership

    “In recent years, research has overwhelmingly shown the harmful effects of incarcerating children. In the short term, incarcerated children are subject to dangerous and abusive conditions, including physical abuse, sexual assault, and practices such as isolation, which can cause permanent psychological damage. These harmful conditions have been proven conclusively in 39 states. Long term, children who are locked up in juvenile correctional facilities are less likely to succeed in school or to find employment, and they are more likely to reoffend compared to similar children who are placed on probation or in alternative programs … With current research on deincarceration and successes in Ohio and other jurisdictions, the question is not whether states should engage in deincarceration strategies, but how to best implement strategies that have been shown to reduce youth incarceration while maintaining public safety. This report will explore Ohio’s evolution of deincarceration programs and, based on Ohio’s experiences, discuss decision points and options that other states and localities should consider when implementing new or modifying existing deincarceration programs to create the most positive outcomes for youth and communities” (p. 3). Ohio's juvenile deincarceration strategies have helped to reduce the juvenile corrections population from 2,500 youth in 1992 to fewer than 500 in 2015. This publication is divided into five sections: introduction; creating a climate for change—the start of Ohio's deincarceration efforts; support for local efforts—Ohio's array of deincarceration programs, such as RECLAIM (Reasoned and Equitable Community and Local Alternatives to the Incarceration of Minors)--two subsidy program and three competitive programs; putting it all together—coordinating and analyzing Ohio's efforts—eight findings; and four recommendations.

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  • National Institute of Corrections Report to the Nation FY14

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    National Institute of Corrections Report to the Nation FY14

    A collection of infographics present the activity of National Institute of Corrections (NIC) over Fiscal Year 2014. NIC has served the public for over 40 years, and is determined to be the nation's most trusted resource for corrections personnel. Three positive comments about NIC service show how NIC has done this. Highlights are provided for NIC's Prisons Division, Jails Division, Community Services Division, and Academy. Let the National Institute of Corrections help you to succeed through technical assistance and other ways.

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  • In Our Own Backyard: Confronting Growth and Disparities in American Jails

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    In Our Own Backyard: Confronting Growth and Disparities in American Jails

    "Although jails are the “front door” to mass incarceration, there is not enough data for justice system stakeholders and others to understand how their jail is being used and how it compares with others. To address this issue, Vera researchers developed a data tool that includes the jail population and jail incarceration rate for every U.S. county that uses a local jail … The data revealed that, since 1970, the number of people held in jail has increased from 157,000 to 690,000 in 2014—a more than four-fold increase nationwide, with growth rates highest in the smallest counties. This data also reveals wide variation in incarceration rates and racial disparities among jurisdictions of similar size and thus underlines an essential point: The number of people in jail is largely the result of choices made by policymakers and others in the justice system. The Incarceration Trends tool provides any jurisdiction with the appetite for change the opportunity to better understand its history of jail use and measure its progress toward decarceration" (website). This website provides access to the Incarceration Trend tool for jails, summary, full report, a video tour of the tool with Chris Henrichson, and data and methods. Sections comprising the full report include: introduction; the expanding footprint of local incarceration—a snapshot of the findings—decades of growth, and growth's disparate impacts; understanding growth and disparities; using the Incarnation Trends tool; and conclusion. The Incarceration Trends tool is interactive and illustrates data per 100,000 county residents for: jail incarceration rate change (1970 to 2014); the 2014 jail incarceration rate; Black/African American jail incarceration rate; female jail incarceration rate; jail and prison incarceration rate for California and New York; what is trending in your county—exploring your counties jail data. One interesting finding is that the largest increase in the number of incarcerated individuals is occurring in mid-sized and small counties. Since 1970, local jail populations in mid-sized counties have grown 4.1 percent, small counties 6.9%, and large counties by 2.8%.

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  • Evidence-Based Decision Making: Victim Service Provider User's Guide

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    Evidence-Based Decision Making: Victim Service Provider User's Guide

    "The purpose of this Guide is to prepare and assist VSPs [victim service providers) to become part of an EBDM [Evidence-Based Decision Making] policy team, as outlined in "A Framework for Evidence-Based Decision Making in Local Criminal Justice Systems" (http://www.pretrial.org/download/performance-measures/The%20EBDM%20Frame...). To help prepare VSPs for this role, the Guide provides: A rationale for VSPs to become involved with the policy team; An examination of the benefits that can accrue from the participation of VSPs in the EBDM process; A description of how VSPs can become part of the EBDM process and how the EBDM principles apply to their work; An exploration of common interests and potential challenges and barriers that VSPs and criminal justice system stakeholders collectively face while engaging in this work, and possible solutions; A link to a primer on EBP and EBDM; A brief overview of why it is important to victims for VSPs to understand the purpose and use of risk/needs assessment tools, a critical component of EBP and EBDM; and Links and references to other information and resources that can help VSPs to educate themselves about becoming part of EBDM policy teams and to conduct evaluations of their own programs" (p. 4). Sections include: introduction; Ten Core Crime Victims' Rights; advancement in the criminal justice system—evidence-based practice (EBP) and evidence-based decision making (EBDM); purpose of this guide; audience for VSP User's Guide; why VSP's should participate in the EBDM process; the unique contribution VSP's can make to the EBDM policy team; becoming part of the EBDM process; what EBDM means to VSPs; how the EBDM principles apply to VSPs; VSPs as an integral part of an EBDM process—what an ideal scenario would look like; VSPs' involvement in key decision points in the criminal justice system—decision points in the EBDM process, and intersection of EBDM decision points and victim considerations; common interests and potential challenges and solutions—prevention, offender accountability, victim needs, limited resources, working with diverse populations, and navigating a complex political environment; conclusion; and a holistic approach to serving victim needs (postscript). Appendixes included are: Why It Is Important to Victims for VSPs to Understand the Purpose and Use of Risk/Needs Assessment Tools; and Tools/Resources for evidence-based decision making, applying EBP to victim service programs, and general victim advocacy issues.

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  • Culture, Language, and Access:; Key Considerations for Serving Deaf Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence

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    Culture, Language, and Access:; Key Considerations for Serving Deaf Survivors of Domestic and Sexual Violence

    "Recent research suggests that Deaf women experience higher rates of sexual and domestic violence than their hearing counterparts, but are often shut off from victim services and supports that are ill-equipped to respond to their unique needs. As a result, they are denied access to services that could help them safely flee from abuse, heal from trauma, and seek justice after they have been harmed. This policy brief offers practical suggestions for expanding and enhancing Deaf survivors’ access to victim services and other supports" (website). Sections of this publication include: introduction; the Deaf community in the U.S.; research on victimization is limited; higher rates of domestic and sexual violence; unique experiences of violence; barriers to services and justice; Services for Deaf, by Deaf—a promising strategy; enhancing the capacity of hearing service providers and systems; collaboration between Deaf and hearing programs; five recommendations; and conclusion.

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  • ADA @ 25: Impact and Implications for People with Disabilities Involved in the Justice System [Webinar]

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    ADA @ 25: Impact and Implications for People with Disabilities Involved in the Justice System [Webinar]

    If you want an update on how the American with Disabilities Act (ADA) impacts disabled offenders then this webinar is a must view. "While there is still a significant gap regarding our knowledge about people with disabilities and Deaf people involved in the justice system, we do know there is a great need to increase access to justice for these people. People with disabilities and Deaf people experience violent victimization at rates three times higher than people without disabilities, making them one of the groups at highest risk of harm in the country. Despite these high rates of victimization, they continue to experience significant barriers to services and the justice system. These barriers not only exist for victims of violent crime but for people with disabilities and Deaf people who are incarcerated. Research reflects that 36 percent of state and 24 percent of federally incarcerated adults report having at least one disability. These individuals experience accessibility barriers from the time of arrest and through incarceration" (Vera website). "With America in the midst of substantial criminal justice reform and celebrating the 25th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), this summit will bring these two issues together. Leaders from both the disability and criminal justice fields will explore the impact the ADA has had on people with disabilities with disabilities who have had involvement with the justice system, either as victims or suspects/offenders. Panelists will also share their visions for justice for people with disabilities for the next 25" (YouTube website). This website provides links to presentations by Senator Harkin and the five panelists. It also has a link to a Fact Sheet (from July 2015) that covers the impact of ADA in disabled offenders. This document has sections about: what we know about justice-involved people with disabilities and deaf people—suspects and offenders, and victims and survivors; the ADA's impact on justice-involved people with disabilities and deaf people—victim service organizations, law enforcement agencies, the courts, and prisons and jails; opportunities at the intersection of access and justice involvement; and additional information about the ADA's five titles, the ADA Amendments Act (ADAAA) of 2008, and Olmstead V L.C. 527 U.S. 581 of 1999.

    Webinar
  • Can Jails and Prisons be Healed?

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    Can Jails and Prisons be Healed?

    This paper expertly describes the Healing Corrections Framework. "The Healing Corrections Framework focuses on the nuts and bolts of the organizational cultures of jails and prisons, how they work, and ways to transform them. It assumes that the primary vehicle for transforming corrections is through meeting the needs of correctional staff to better equip them to work with each other and with those they supervise in jails, prisons, or the community. The logic of this is simple; the work of corrections is done by correctional workers and to change the way corrections works, correctional workers must change how they do their jobs. This will require correctional staff at all levels to communicate with each other and with people under their supervision in more constructive and compassionate ways. In the Healing Corrections framework, “how things are done,” especially how roles and expectations are continuously defined and redefined among the actors within a system, is the working definition of culture" (p. 5). Topics discussed in this document include: capacity versus opportunity; cultural context; cultural fragmentation of systems, the key concept of the Framework, versus coherence; development of the Healing Corrections Framework—its empirical foundation in the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) Prison Culture Project, and the Norval Morris Project, and cycles of engagement and interaction; the Healing Corrections Framework which dialogue as cultural change; Healing Corrections and "mass incarceration"; American culture and American Justice; talking about punishment; and gazing into the abyss. This website provides access to the paper and the presentation slides.

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  • Disabilities Among Prison And Jail Inmates, 2011–12

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    Disabilities Among Prison And Jail Inmates, 2011–12

    This report presents statistics regarding "the prevalence of disabilities among prison and jail inmates, detailing the prevalence of six specific disability types: hearing, vision, cognitive, ambulatory, self-care, and independent living. Important differences in each type of disability are highlighted by demographic characteristics. The report also assesses the prevalence of disabilities with other health problems, such as a current chronic condition, obesity, ever having an infectious disease, and past 30-day serious psychological distress … Highlights: An estimated 32% of prisoners and 40% of jail inmates reported having at least one disability; Prisoners were nearly 3 times more likely and jail inmates were more than 4 times more likely than the general population to report having at least one disability; About 2 in 10 prisoners and 3 in 10 jail inmates reported having a cognitive disability, the most common reported disability in each population; Female prisoners were more likely than male prisoners to report having a cognitive disability, but were equally likely to report having each of the other five disabilities; Non-Hispanic white prisoners (37%) and prisoners of two or more races (42%) were more likely than non-Hispanic black prisoners (26%) to report having at least one disability; [and] More than half of prisoners (54%) and jail inmates (53%) with a disability reported a co-occurring chronic condition" (website).

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  • Health Correlates of Criminal Justice Involvement in 4,793 Transgender Veterans

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    Health Correlates of Criminal Justice Involvement in 4,793 Transgender Veterans

    "Transgender (TG) persons are overrepresented in prison settings and in the U.S. veteran population. Health disparities studies of large populations of transgender people involved with the criminal justice system have not been published to date … "This investigation sought to describe characteristics associated with JI in a sample of veterans with TG identification and to determine whether health disparities exist when compared to non-TG veterans with a JI history" (p. 297, 298). Results are presented regarding: characteristics of TG and non-TG veterans; sample characteristics of justice involved (JI) TG and non-TG veterans; characteristics of justice involved TG and justice involved non-TG veterans; and the effects of TG status and VJP [Veteran Justice Programs] involvement on medical and mental health problems. Findings suggest that TG veterans are more like to be involved with the justice system, to have been homeless at one time or another, and/or experienced sexual assault while serving in the military compared to non-TG JI (justice involved) veterans. TG JI veterans also at increased risk for depression, posttraumatic stress syndrome (PTSD), serious mental illness, suicide, hypertension, and obesity. "These data suggest that TG veterans experience a number of health risks compared to non-TG veterans, including an increased likelihood of justice involvement. TG veterans involved with the criminal justice system are a particularly vulnerable group and services designed to address the health care needs of this population, both while incarcerated and when in the community, should take these findings into account in the development of health screenings and treatment plans" (p. 297).

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  • Fundamentals of Bail: A Resource Guide for Pretrial Practitioners and a Framework for American Pretrial Reform

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    Fundamentals of Bail: A Resource Guide for Pretrial Practitioners and a Framework for American Pretrial Reform

    "Pretrial justice requires that those seeking it be consistent with both their vision and with the concept of pretrial best practices, and this document is designed to help further that goal. It can be used as a resource guide, giving readers a basic understanding of the key areas of bail and the criminal pretrial process and then listing key documents and resources necessary to adopt a uniform working knowledge of legal and evidence-based practices in the field. Hopefully, however, this document will serve as more than just a paper providing mere background information, for it is designed, instead, to also provide the intellectual framework to finally achieve pretrial justice in America … in this country we have undertaken two generations of pretrial reform, and we are currently in a third. The lessons we have learned from the first two generations are monumental, but we have not fully implemented them, leading to the need for some “grand unifying theory” to explore how this third generation can be our last. In my opinion, that theory comes from a solid consensus understanding of the fundamentals of bail, why they are important, and how they work together toward an idea of pretrial justice that all Americans can embrace" (p. 4). Sections following an executive summary are; introduction—what bail and bond are; why we need pretrial improvements; the history of bail; legal foundations of pretrial justice; pretrial research; national standards on pretrial release; pretrial terms and phrases; application—guidelines for pretrial reform; and conclusion.

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  • Money as a Criminal Justice Stakeholder: The Judge’s Decision to Release or Detain a Defendant Pretrial

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    Money as a Criminal Justice Stakeholder: The Judge’s Decision to Release or Detain a Defendant Pretrial

    <p>"The future of pretrial justice in America will come partly from our deliberative focus on our judges’ decisions to release or detain a criminal defendant pretrial and from our questioning of whether our current constitutional and statutory bail schemes are either helping or hindering those decisions … we recognize that we also need a fair and transparent scheme allowing the preventive detention of higher risk defendants without "bail," or judges will continue to be forced to use money to accomplish the same thing, albeit unfairly, non-transparently, and, some would say, unlawfully. A new group of people are now telling us that we can never change our constitution to allow the creation of this scheme, but the fact is that change is inevitable. Indeed, moving from a mostly charge and money-based bail system to one based primarily on empirically-derived risk necessarily means that virtually all American bail laws are antiquated and must be changed … This paper is designed to show a somewhat ideal process for making a release or detain decision, but with the realization that a particular state’s bail laws may hinder that ideal process to a point where best practices are difficult or even impossible to implement. Nevertheless, until we know how the pretrial decision-making process should work (i.e., an in-or-out decision, immediately effectuated), we will never know exactly which changes we must make to further the goals underlying the "bail/no bail" process" (p. 1). Chapters following an executive summary are: introduction; the history and the law related to bail up to the Twentieth Century; how pretrial decision making in the United States got off track; "bail" (release) and "no bail" (detention); the national standards on pretrial release; effective pretrial decision making—risk assessment instruments, and assessing which conditions are effective for their lawful purposes; the practical aspects of making an effective "release/detain" or in-or-out-decision—the three steps of proper purpose, legal assessment, and release or detention result; and conclusion.</p>

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  • Developing and Implementing a PREA-Compliant Staffing Plan [Webinar]

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    Developing and Implementing a PREA-Compliant Staffing Plan [Webinar]

    This webinar is a great introduction for "correctional practitioners to a new resource for developing a PREA-compliant staffing plan, per standard §115.13/.113/.213/.313 … Topics for this webinar will include: Recommendations for approaching or improving a staffing plan with consideration of influencing factors; Facility-specific PREA requirements; Appropriate staff that should be involved in assessing and drafting the staffing plan; and Special considerations including the use of video monitoring, staffing ratios in juvenile facilities, supervision of vulnerable populations, and gender-specific considerations" (website). The webinar agenda is: welcome and opening remarks; background and context; introduction to the Staffing Plan Resource Guide; staffing plan requirements; influencing factors; how to develop a staffing plan; video monitoring, juvenile ratios, and gender; how a staffing plan will be audited; and question and answer period.

    Webinar
  • Victim Impact: Listen and Learn: An Evaluation of the Effects of the Victim Impact: Listen and Learn Program on Prisoner Recidivism and Prisoner Behavior

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    Victim Impact: Listen and Learn: An Evaluation of the Effects of the Victim Impact: Listen and Learn Program on Prisoner Recidivism and Prisoner Behavior

    "This is a report of the evaluation study conducted to examine the effects of the Victim Impact: Listen and Learn program on the behaviors of the prisoners who attended this program. The focus of the data we collected and reported on was on the participants’ behaviors after attending the program but while still in prison, and upon release from prison … The central tenet of the program is that a vital component to facilitating change within an individual offender is a focus on the victims of crime, and the impact of a crime on the victim" (p. 1). Victim Impact has been implemented in the Delaware prison system since 2011. Some of the findings form this study include: participants has a recidivism rate (re-offense and re-commitment) of 35 % compared to 67% for non-participants; and participants had a 33% reduction in disciplinary charges. Thus, Victim Impact reduces recidivism and can provide significant cost savings.

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  • Census Of Jails: Population Changes, 1999–2013

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    Census Of Jails: Population Changes, 1999–2013

    This report presents "state-level estimates of the number of inmates confined in local jails at year end 2013, by sex, race, and Hispanic origin. This report provides information on changes in the incarceration rate, average daily population, admissions, expected length of stay, rated capacity, percent of capacity occupied, and inmate-to-correctional officer ratios. It also includes statistics, by jurisdiction size, on the number of inmates confined to jail and persons admitted to jail during 2013. It features a special section on the 12 facilities that functioned as jails for the Federal Bureau of Prisons. Highlights: From 1999 to 2013, the number of inmates in local jails increased by 21%, from 605,943 to 731,570 [while] During this period, the growth in the jail population was not steady, as the jail confined population peaked in 2008 at 785,533 then declined to its 2013 level; The adult jail incarceration rates changed slightly between midyear 1999 (304 [per 100,000 adult U.S. residents]) and yearend 2013 (310 [per 100,000 adult U.S. residents]); Nearly half (46%) of all local jail inmates were confined in jurisdictions holding 1,000 or more inmates in 2013, down slightly from 50% in 2006; Between 1999 and yearend 2013, the female inmate population increased by 48%, from approximately 68,100 to 100,940. The male inmate population increased by 17%, from approximately 537,800 to 630,620; [and] The juvenile population (persons age 17 or younger) held in adult jail facilities in 2013 (4,420) decreased by more than half from its peak in 1999 (9,458).

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  • Solutions: American Leaders Speak Out on Criminal Justice

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    Solutions: American Leaders Speak Out on Criminal Justice

    "To truly reduce mass incarceration, we need a national conversation, led by national voices, offering national solutions. In this book, the Brennan Center asked the country’s leading public figures and criminal justice experts to offer practical solutions. They responded by writing essays putting forth a variety of proposals to tackle the problem of overincarceration from differing perspectives … They share a commitment to continued progress in the fight against crime — and continued progress toward a more just society. The 22 solutions offered here will not fix the problem on their own. It is our hope that lawmakers and stakeholders implement these ideas to produce a system that both reduces crime and reduces mass incarceration" (p. 2). These solutions are presented by Democrats, Independents, and Republicans some of them being saving jail for the most dangerous, implementing a real mental health system, graduated reentry, abolishing the death penalty while investing in public safety, restoring fairness in sentencing, reducing the number of crimes, mercy--especially for the mentally ill, and getting offenders ready for work.

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  • Veterans In Prison And Jail, 2011–2012

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    Veterans In Prison And Jail, 2011–2012

    This report presents "counts and rates of veterans in state and federal prison and local jail in 2011 and 2012. This report describes incarcerated veterans by demographic characteristics, military characteristics, and disability and mental health status. It describes current offense, sentencing, and criminal history characteristics by veteran status. It also examines combat experience associated with lifetime mental health disorders among incarcerated veterans … Highlights: The number of veterans incarcerated in state and federal prison and local jail decreased from 203,000 in 2004 to 181,500 in 2011–12; The total incarceration rate in 2011–12 for veterans (855 per 100,000 veterans in the United States) was lower than the rate for nonveterans (968 per 100,000 U.S. residents); Non-Hispanic black and Hispanic inmates made up a significantly smaller proportion of incarcerated veterans (38% in prison and 44% in jail), compared to incarcerated non-Hispanic black and Hispanic nonveterans (63% in prison and 59% in jail); A greater percentage of veterans (64%) than nonveterans (48%) were sentenced for violent offenses; [and] An estimated 43% of veterans and 55% of nonveterans in prison had four or more prior arrests."

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  • Stress and Corrections: Addressing the Safety and Well-Being of Correctional Officers

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    Stress and Corrections: Addressing the Safety and Well-Being of Correctional Officers

    "Pubmed is an Internet search engine used to access millions of articles in biomedical and life science literature … only 23 articles are identified when searching “correctional officers (COs) and health.” This article is a snapshot of ongoing work and a growing national consortium of individuals interested in advancing the well-being of Cos" (p. 1). Sections cover : hazards of corrections work; stress is hazardous to your heart; ways to improve well-being; first National Symposium on Corrections Worker Health; and conclusion. "The review of CO stressors concluded that, while there are local efforts and recommended best practices, there are no proven effective safety and health programs for COs, and more studies are needed" (p. 4).

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  • Maltreatment of Youth in U.S. Juvenile Corrections Facilities: An Update

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    Maltreatment of Youth in U.S. Juvenile Corrections Facilities: An Update

    "This report, released as a follow-up to No Place For Kids [2011], introduces new evidence on the widespread maltreatment of youth in state-funded juvenile corrections facilities. It tells of high rates of sexual victimization, the heavy-handed use of disciplinary isolation and a growing roster of states where confined youth have been subject to widespread abuse. The four-year update is in — and the news is not good." Sections of this report include: introduction and summary; findings from "No Place for Kids" on the nature, breadth, and extent of maltreatment and abuse in juvenile correctional agencies; new information about maltreatment in state-funded juvenile corrections facilities—additional states with proven maltreatment, recidivist states, and new evidence of and attention to maltreatment; and conclusion. This website also provides to access to: evidence of maltreatment in each individual state; national news release; "State-by-State Summary of Maltreatment" publication; and the blog entry "New Report Documents Continuing Maltreatment of Incarcerated Youth".

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  • The High Costs of Low Risk: The Crisis of America's Aging Prison Population

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    The High Costs of Low Risk: The Crisis of America's Aging Prison Population

    "The immense costs of incarceration have increasingly framed the conversation around reducing the prison population as a matter of fiscal responsibility and budgetary necessity. This discussion is often centered around reducing the arrest and prosecution of so-called “non-violent drug offenders.” But these issues belie a much more pressing human and economic concern: the aging prison population, whose costs for incarceration and care will soon prove unsustainable if meaningful action is not taken. And though prison is expensive, cost is far from the only justification to move away from our reliance on incarceration, as the continued long-term incarceration of aging citizens has serious moral, ethical, public health, and public safety implications" (p. 1). This paper explains how agencies might go about effectively addressing these issues. Sections following an executive summary address: the threat facing the United States—economic costs, health impact, strain on correctional systems, social costs and public safety, and the roots of the crisis; from the inside out—meeting the needs of the aging within prisons—six innovative programs; the question of parole; the reentry experience—five viable strategies; the work to be done within correctional facilities, release mechanisms, and post-release services; and toward a new paradigm of punishment. "The interconnected complexity of the aging prisoner crisis demands a strategic response that is versatile and multifaceted, and that seeks to address the issue at multiple points of intervention with involvement from all stakeholders. The fields of gerontology, philanthropy, health, and corrections are uniquely positioned and qualified collectively to inform and implement both short- and long-term solutions to this issue. Armed with critical interdisciplinary knowledge and backed by investment from the philanthropic community, such a collaborative partnership possesses unparalleled opportunity to make lasting contributions to the policies and best practices affecting the aging prison population. This joint stakeholder alliance is particularly well-suited to enrich the reentry process, first by identifying those factors that formerly incarcerated elders need to thrive upon their release to the community and subsequently creating resources and pathways for success. Such an approach would not only yield tremendous cost savings, improved public health outcomes, and economic growth, but would also embody a commitment to human rights—including the freedom for our elders to live the remainder of their lives within their communities and to die with grace in the presence of friends and family" (p. 14-15).

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  • Why do rates of sexual assault prevalence vary from report to report?

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    Why do rates of sexual assault prevalence vary from report to report?

    "All crime data have flaws, but sexual assault data are notoriously inaccurate. Why are these data so problematic? And what are the consequences for how we address sexual violence in the United States? Data on rape and sexual assault suffer from inconsistent estimates and underreporting, leading to misunderstandings about the extent of the problem and adequate policy solutions. Let’s look at two major sources of information on the topic: survey-based studies that estimate prevalence of sexual assaults and criminal justice system data. In this post, we look at data on female victims of sexual violence, since most existing reports and statistics focus on women. Data on sexual assault against men are especially sparse; we know even less about the experiences of male victims" (p. 1). Sections cover: two different surveys, two different stories—National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) and the National Intimate Partner Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS); and why criminal justice data can be misleading.

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  • Reaching In: A Handbook for the Families of Parents Incarcerated in Wisconsin

    Reaching In: A Handbook for the Families of Parents Incarcerated in Wisconsin cover
    Reaching In: A Handbook for the Families of Parents Incarcerated in Wisconsin

    "More than 2 million children have a parent currently in prison or jail, and 10 million more have experienced incarceration of one or both parents as some time in their lives. The incarcerated parent, the child, and the child’s caregiver all suffer as a result of the separation. The longer the parent and child are separated, the more likely they are to grow apart. The imprisonment of a parent often causes a family’s financial and living situations to get worse … Studies have shown that communication and interest in each others’ lives reduces the harmful effects of incarceration and the child’s chances of following his parent into prison. Staying connected helps both the child and the offender to grow, learn and change. After the offender’s prison time is served, the move back to the home is easier for both the parent and the children when communication remains constant. There is less fear, less “catching up” to do, less bad feelings, more communication, more helping the child to heal, and less chance of continuing the cycle of incarceration" (p. 2). This handbook is designed to help the caregiver and child(ren) deal with an parents' incarceration. Sections contained in this publication are: introduction; coping with incarceration; helping children stay connected; encouraging children's education; family finances—child support and health insurance; returning home; and help for incarcerated parents and caregivers.

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  • LGBT Youth in Juvenile Justice: Creating Agency Policies for an Equitable System Webinar

    LGBT Youth in Juvenile Justice: Creating Agency Policies for an Equitable System Webinar cover
    LGBT Youth in Juvenile Justice: Creating Agency Policies for an Equitable System Webinar

    Many juvenile justice systems don't know how many young people in their system identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT) and often lack appropriate policies that meet their unique needs … This webinar discussed the need for agency policies to support LGBT young people in the juvenile justice system. Participants learned how the Massachusetts Department of Youth Services [DYS] and Santa Clara County Probation Department [SCCPD] developed policies for LGBT youth in their system, as well as different strategies for creating similar policies in state- and county-based systems (website). This zip file contains: SCCPD Stakeholder Invitation; SCCPD Transgender Procedure Guidelines; SCCPD Transgender Preference Form; SCCPD Cultural Competence Form; Santa Clara, County Counsel Memorandum; Massachusetts DYS Official Policy; and presentation slides.

    Webinar
  • Policy Review and Development Guide: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Persons in Custodial Settings, 2nd Edition

    Policy Review and Development Guide: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Persons in Custodial Settings, 2nd Edition cover
    Policy Review and Development Guide: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Persons in Custodial Settings, 2nd Edition

    "In the first edition of this guide, we aimed to reach out to correctional agencies in order to help them identify, address, and respond to abuse of LGBTI individuals through agency policies and procedures. We hoped to deepen the dialogue between staff and administrators as well as community leaders and criminal justice advocates about strategies to eliminate abuse of LGBTI individuals in custody. The second edition of this guide provides updated key information to correctional agencies about PREA’s impact on agency practice as it relates to LGBTI individuals in custody" (p. 1). This guide is made up of three chapters: introduction and overview—introduction, evolving terminology and definitions, core principles for understanding LGBTI individuals in custody, and emerging data on LGBTI individuals in custodial settings and the challenges they face; LGBTI youth under custodial supervision—the law, PREA standards, other governing principles (state human rights laws and professional codes of ethics), and elements of legally sound and effective policy and practice; and LGBTI adults under custodial supervision—the law, PREA standards, and elements of legally sound and effective policy and practice. Appendixes provide: glossary; case law digest; additional resources; webpages with sample policies; Issues to Watch: The Impact of Non-Custodial LGBTI Developments on Corrections; sample policies; and training matrices.

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  • Reducing Recidivism and Improving Other Outcomes for Young Adults in the Juvenile and Adult Criminal Justice Systems

    Reducing Recidivism and Improving Other Outcomes for Young Adults in the Juvenile and Adult Criminal Justice Systems cover
    Reducing Recidivism and Improving Other Outcomes for Young Adults in the Juvenile and Adult Criminal Justice Systems

    This brief, from the CSG Justice Center, is designed to help state and local officials better support young adults in the justice system. It identifies these young adults’ distinct needs, summaries the limited research available on what works to address these needs, and provides recommendations for steps that policymakers, juvenile and adult criminal justice agency leaders, researchers, and the field can take to improve outcomes" (website). Part I—How Young Adults Are Developmentally Different from Youth and Older Adults: how young adults are distinct from youth; how young adults are distinct from adults; and young adults by the numbers--arrest rates, incarceration rates, and recidivism rates. Part II—Opportunities and Challenges to Meeting Young Adults' Needs: young adults under justice system supervision have distinct needs and few programs exist that are proven to effectively meet these needs—criminal thinking and behavior, education, employment, mental health and substance use, and transition to independence; young adults face systemic barriers to meeting their needs—aging out of protective networks and lack of coordination across service systems, and collateral consequences. Part III—Recommendations: four recommendations; and promising models for young adults under justice system supervision—Multisystemic Therapy for Emerging Adults (MST-EA), and the Roca nonprofit organization in Massachusetts; and increasing cross-systems coordination to improve outcomes for young adults in Iowa—the Iowa Collaboration for Youth Development (ICYD).

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  • Hazmat Suit for the Soul

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    Hazmat Suit for the Soul

    This three part series addresses the issue of corrections fatigue and how corrections staff can deal with it by developing "hazmat suits for their souls". A hazmat suit for the soul allows you to respond to the "hazardous materials" of daily stress and dangerous incidents during work and to "decontaminate" emotionally afterwards. Part One explains "complex trauma", how it can result in psychological symptoms, diagnostic psychiatric disorders like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), adverse workplace performance, costs, and neurobiological changes. Part Two compares "negative resilience" and true resilience. It explains the need for corrections staff to seek "solid and enduring resilience is of primary importance, as literally lives may depend on it". Part Three explains how corrections staff can develop effective hazmat suits for the soul using prevention or intervention approaches. This part also describes four "categories of behavior (aka factors)" that can increase resilience in corrections staff. The factors are supportive staff relationship effects; self-care health maintenance efforts; confident/perseverant frame of mind; and controlled/logical problem-solving. NOTE: This set of articles was previously published in 2011, and have been updated and reprinted.

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  • Reducing Juvenile Recidivism Interactive Checklists

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    Reducing Juvenile Recidivism Interactive Checklists

    "These interactive checklists can help state and local officials to assess whether their juvenile justice system’s policies and practices are aligned with the research on “what works” to reduce recidivism and to identify opportunities for improvement" (website). There are three checklists each designed for a particular audience: Checklist for Juvenile Justice Agency Leaders and Managers; Ten Key Questions Judges Can Ask to Improve Outcomes for Youth in the Juvenile Justice System; and Three Key Steps Policymakers Can Take to Improve Outcomes for Youth in the Juvenile Justice System.

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  • Making PREA and victim services accessible for incarcerated people with disabilities: An implementation guide for practitioners on the adult and juvenile standards

    Making PREA and victim services accessible for incarcerated people with disabilities: An implementation guide for practitioners on the adult and juvenile standards cover
    Making PREA and victim services accessible for incarcerated people with disabilities: An implementation guide for practitioners on the adult and juvenile standards

    The Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) sets standards to ensure that information about PREA and victim services are accessible to people with disabilities. The purpose of this guide is to provide strategies to correctional agencies that will aid their compliance with these PREA requirements. The strategies discussed in this guide draw on established practices used by victim service organizations—both community-based and those based in government agencies—to make their services more accessible for this population. By offering concrete recommendations on how to adapt these community practices to correctional settings, this guide aims to help adult and juvenile correctional facilities increase accessibility for people with disabilities. While it is not a focus of this guide, an important component to making PREA and victim services accessible for people with disabilities is to institutionalize any new practices or partnerships in facility policy" (p. 2). Sections comprising this guide are: purpose; defining disability; sexual abuse and incarcerated people with disabilities—applicable PREA standards, and legal compliance; strategies for making PREA information and victim services accessible—increase access for the broadest range of users, increase capacity for individualized accessibility solutions, ensure access to reporting, and ensure access to victim services; staff training and resources; and conclusion.

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  • Are prisons really schools for terrorism? Challenging the rhetoric on prison radicalization

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    Are prisons really schools for terrorism? Challenging the rhetoric on prison radicalization

    "When governments justify the necessity to segregate and/or isolate terrorist inmates from mainstream prisoners, they commonly raise concerns about their prisons becoming schools for terrorism. Yet, these concerns are often based on limited information about prisoner radicalization, potentially resulting in the mismanagement (both financially and psychologically) of terrorist inmates in many countries. This article challenges contemporary research on prison radicalization and recruitment by highlighting several factors that may hamper these activities to demonstrate why some prison regimes and their programmes for housing terrorist inmates face a greater risk than others. In contrast to other studies, this article concludes that the radicalization and recruitment of mainstream prisoners by terrorist inmates under certain prison conditions is not necessarily a given outcome" (p. 74). Sections of this article include: abstract; introduction; prison case studies—the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Pakistan; radicalization and the prison environment; ad conclusion. "This article has provided an alternative perspective to contemporary discussion on prison radicalization, which appears to over-state the threat by viewing all prisons as ‘schools’ or ‘universities’ for terrorism. However, by examining a cross-section of correctional systems, this article has identified several factors that challenge common perceptions about the schools or universities for terrorism theory. It concludes that prison radicalization and recruitment for Islamist militant groups are more the exception than the rule and, when prison radicalization has occurred, the chances of these inmates then being recruited into a terrorist group are slim. In addition, once released, the relationship between these individuals committing acts of terrorism and their time in prison is tenuous at best" (p. 95).

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  • Educational Technology in Corrections, 2015

    Educational Technology in Corrections, 2015 cover
    Educational Technology in Corrections, 2015

    "Technology has transformed the way we approach most daily tasks and activities. It plays a role in how we apply for and perform on a job, communicate with friends and family, access government and other services, manage our finances, and purchase entertainment. Technology also enables our learning … The policies and practices of federal, state, and local corrections agencies, including the juvenile justice system, severely hinder the ability of correctional education programs to enable learning through technology … The primary concern about adopting educational technology in corrections is the potential for security breaches. Other reasons include, but are not limited to, insufficient resources and staff capacity to purchase, implement, maintain, and monitor advanced technologies … This report is designed to inform federal, state, and local corrections and correctional education administrators as they explore ways to securely and cost effectively provide advanced technologies in corrections facilities to help strengthen and expand educational and reentry services. It describes the current status of these technologies in corrections, existing and emerging approaches to providing such services in facilities, and the successes and challenges of early implementers. The report concludes with a set of recommendations that align with the National Education Technology Plan’s five overarching goals" (p. 1-3). Sections of this report include: introduction; overview; current status of advanced technologies in corrections; mobile device vendors providing educational technology in corrections; successes and challenges of early implementers; international use of technology in correctional education delivery; recommendations for adopting educational technology in corrections; information technology terminology; and the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction's Policy on Internet Access to Prisoners.

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  • The Effect of Conjugal Visitation on Sexual Violence in Prison

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    The Effect of Conjugal Visitation on Sexual Violence in Prison

    The impact of conjugal visitation on prison sexual assaults is investigated. Sections following an abstract include: introduction; theories about the causes of sexual violence—dominance, or sexual gratification; conjugal visitation and sexual offending in violence; data; findings regarding the increase in prison sexual violence due to prison population growth, and the impact of conjugal visitation on inmate sexual offending; and conclusion. Those states that allow conjugal visits have a significantly lower number of reported prison rape and other sexual violence in their prisons.

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  • Reentry Skills Building Handbook, 2015

    Reentry Skills Building Handbook, 2015 cover
    Reentry Skills Building Handbook, 2015

    While specifically designed for Georgia, this handbook's format is a great example of an offender reentry handbook. It is based upon the Template from the Minnesota Department of Corrections. Sections following a "GDC Offender Reentry Model" flowchart include: introduction—getting organized; identification; housing; employment; careers; programs inside GDC; work ethics; transportation; money management; education; incarcerated veterans program; selective service; applying for Social Security; health and life skills; mental health services; alcohol, other drugs (AOD), and recovery; family and friend relationships; child support; living under supervision; and Georgia specific community resource contact information.

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  • Probation And Parole In The United States, 2014

    Probation And Parole In The United States, 2014 cover
    Probation And Parole In The United States, 2014

    This report presents "data on adult offenders under community supervision while on probation or parole in 2014. The report presents trends over time for the overall community supervision population and describes changes in the probation and parole populations. It provides statistics on the number of offenders entering and exiting probation and parole and the mean time served as well as national-level data on the distribution of offenders on probation or parole by sex, race or Hispanic origin, most serious offense type, and status of supervision. It also presents outcomes of supervision, including the rate at which offenders completed their term of supervision or were returned to incarceration. Appendix tables include jurisdiction-level information on the population counts and number of entries and exits for probation and parole; jurisdiction-level information on the types of entries and exits for parole. Some highlights include: the number of adults under community supervision (both in parole and probation) declined; about 1 in 52 adults in the United States was under community supervision; and the adult probation population decreased, while the adult parole population increased.

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  • Battle Scars: Military Veterans and the Death Penalty

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    Battle Scars: Military Veterans and the Death Penalty

    "In many respects, veterans in the United States are again receiving the respect and gratitude they deserve for having risked their lives and served their country. Wounded soldiers are welcomed home, and their courage in starting a new and difficult journey in civilian life is rightly applauded. But some veterans with debilitating scars from their time in combat have received a very different reception … Veterans with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) who have committed heinous crimes present hard cases for our system of justice. The violence that occasionally erupts into murder can easily overcome the special respect that is afforded most veterans. However, looking away and ignoring this issue serves neither veterans nor victims … This report is not a definitive study of all the veterans who have been sentenced to death in the modern era of capital punishment. Rather, it is a wake-up call to the justice system and the public at large: As the death penalty is being questioned in many areas, it should certainly be more closely scrutinized when used against veterans with PTSD and other mental disabilities stemming from their service. Recognizing the difficult challenges many veterans face after their service should warrant a close examination of the punishment of death for those wounded warriors who have committed capital crimes. Moreover, a better understanding of the disabilities some veterans face could lead to a broader conversation about the wide use of the death penalty for others suffering from severe mental illness" (p. 2, 3). This report provides this information. These sections follow an executive summary: introduction; scope of the problem—veterans sentenced to death, prevalence of PTSD and other disorders, and mental illness, PTSD, and the death penalty; areas of concern in capital cases—veterans already executed (some individual profiles), condemned veterans—not executed (a few profiles), and future cases; what can be done; and conclusion.

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  • The Growth of Veterans Treatment Courts [Podcast]

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    The Growth of Veterans Treatment Courts [Podcast]

    "Veterans Treatment Courts are one of the fastest growing criminal justice programs in the United States. Since 9/11, more than 2.5 million Americans have served our country in uniform. Many of them have deployed several times. And many of these men and women in uniform are coming home and struggling not only with the physical wounds of war, but also its “invisible” wounds: post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury. Since the inception of the first Veterans Treatment Court by Judge Robert Russell in Buffalo, NY in 2008, there are now more than 300 veterans treatment courts across the country. These courts account for veterans’ military service and provide diversion and treatment alternatives specific to their needs. The development of a screening tool specific to veterans is now underway through partnership between the National Institute of Corrections (NIC), the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) and the Center for Court Innovation (CCI). The assessment tool factors in the latest research on trauma and will support an accompanying case planning protocol. This Veterans Treatment Court Enhancement Initiative is a three-year project that will include implementing the tool and protocol in two pilot sites. The pilot site solicitation opportunity will be released in November 2015."

    Audio
  • Offender Risk & Needs Assessment Instruments: A Primer for Courts

    Offender Risk & Needs Assessment Instruments: A Primer for Courts cover
    Offender Risk & Needs Assessment Instruments: A Primer for Courts

    "Practitioners use risk assessment information to inform decisions at various points in the criminal justice system. The Primer is written for judges, policy makers, and other practitioners interested in the use of RNA [risk and needs assessment] information at sentencing for the purpose of informing community corrections related decisions regarding management and reduction of offender recidivism risk. It focuses on RNA instruments designed specifically to inform these community corrections-related decisions" (p. 2). This publication explains: what risk and needs assessment instruments are, and reasons for using them; examples of six risk and needs assessment instruments and how they differ; what the qualities of good risk and needs assessment instruments are; the practices which support sound implementation of risk and needs assessment instruments; and the practical considerations in selecting and using risk and needs assessment instruments. An appendix provides profiles of risk and needs assessment instruments.

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  • The Importance of Information Sharing for Justice Reform

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    The Importance of Information Sharing for Justice Reform

    "Policymakers at all levels of government in the United States are increasingly turning toward alternatives to incarceration and pretrial detention. The aim is to decrease the cost of the criminal justice system, while reducing recidivism and improving outcomes for people accused of and convicted of criminal behavior. There is great promise in “justice reinvestment”: that society can save money and improve public safety by detaining and incarcerating fewer people and redirecting a portion of the savings to more effective supervised treatment, training, and other programming in the community. Fulfilling this promise, though, requires that those who make policy for, and allocate funding to, justice reform initiatives recognize the importance of making timely, accurate information available to the front-line practitioners—probation and parole officers, treatment providers and healthcare professionals, and the organizations providing services and programs to people under supervision. Without this flow of information, justice reform will likely fall far short of policymakers’ and citizens’ expectations, and may in the end neither reduce expenditures nor improve public safety" (p. 1). The following sections of this report explain how information sharing positively impacts justice reform by: making better decisions; ensuring accountability; providing efficient services; understanding an investing in what works; and by building on what exists. Each section also includes experiences from the field that support the information sharing initiatives.

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  • States of Women's Incarceration: The Global Context

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    States of Women's Incarceration: The Global Context

    If you want an easy to understand and concise source of information about female incarceration within the U.S. and the throughout the world, then this report is for you. It is a must read for correctional professionals, policymakers, advocates, and community members. "We already know that when it comes to incarceration … the United States incarcerates 716 people for every 100,000 residents, more than any other country. Worldwide, and within the U.S., the vast majority of those incarcerated are men. As a result, women's incarceration rates are overshadowed and often lost in the data. As a first step in documenting how women fare in the world's carceral landscape, this report compares the incarceration rates for women of each U.S. state with the equivalent rates for countries around the world." Sections of this report including a few of the findings are: introduction; outpacing the world—while the U.S. has only 5% of the world's female population, it holds close to 30% of the world's incarcerated females, very close to the total in Thailand, twice that of China, and four times that of Russia; World Women's Incarceration Rate if Every U.S. State Were a Country" infographic—the top 44 jurisdictions are states in the U.S.; outpacing our peers—among NATO countries the U.S. incarceration rate is eight times that of the closet ally Portugal, with Rhode Island with the lowest female incarceration rate in the U.S. is still twice that of Portugal and overall 15th in the world; outpacing ourselves; and conclusion. "The statistics revealed by this report are simple and staggering. They suggest that states cannot remain complacent about how many women they incarcerate. Women should be a mainstay of any state policy discussions on the economical and effective use of incarceration if we hope to incarcerate fewer women."

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  • Using Risk and Needs Assessment Information at Sentencing: Observations from Ten Jurisdictions

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    Using Risk and Needs Assessment Information at Sentencing: Observations from Ten Jurisdictions

    "RNA [risk and needs assessment] instruments are actuarial tools designed to inform community corrections-related decisions regarding risk management and reduction. They consist, in part, of static factors such as criminal history and age at first offense which are related to recidivism but cannot be altered through the delivery of services or treatment programs. In addition, and more importantly for recidivism reduction purposes, the tools identify dynamic risk factors (sometimes referred to as criminogenic needs) such as antisocial attitudes and antisocial peer groups that also are related to recidivism but can be addressed through services and treatment programs. Information from these tools assists in identifying specific offender risk factors that can be targeted with services and treatment programs in order to help reduce an offender’s likelihood of reoffending … Several jurisdictions now provide RNA information to the court to inform sentencing decisions as part of a broader evidence-based approach to effective risk management and recidivism reduction … The current report synthesizes the information across the ten jurisdictions and provides examples of how and the degree to which jurisdictions have implemented each of the nine guiding principles" (p. 1, 2, 3). Sections comprising this report are: Introduction; Guiding Principle 1: Public Safety/Risk Management Purpose; Guiding Principle 2: Amenability to Probation; Guiding Principle 3: Effective Conditions of Probation and Responses to Violations; Guiding Principle 4: Stakeholder Training; Guiding Principle 5: Availability and Routine Use of Offender Assessments; Guiding Principle 6: Evidence-Based Infrastructure; Guiding Principle 7: Assessment Instruments; Guiding Principle 8: Assessment Reports; Guiding Principle 9: Monitoring and Evaluation.; The Way Forward: Judicial Leadership and Lessons Learned; Conclusion; and Appendix: Jurisdiction Profiles. This report is accompanies "Using Offender Risk and Needs Assessment Information at Sentencing: Guidance for Courts from a National Working Group" - NICIC accession no. 026663.

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  • A Tribal Probation Officers Guide to Working with Victims

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    A Tribal Probation Officers Guide to Working with Victims

    "While victims are not the primary client for you as a tribal probation officer [TPO], you are in a unique position to provide them with critical information and link them with services. This bulletin is designed to provide TPOs with a brief overview of victims’ rights, tips to help coordinate and improve the delivery of victim services, and information about the varied services available to victims of crime" (p. 3). Sections of this publication cover: why tribal probation officers should be concerned about crime victims; the impact of crime on victims; eight specific victims' rights under federal law; barriers to victim participation in criminal and tribal justice processes; victims' rights and related services—safety and reasonable protection, confidentiality, notification and information, participation, victim input, restitution and other legal/financial obligations (LFOs), and victim compensation; effective communication with victims; collaboration for victims' rights implementation and victim assistance services—federal victim services, tribal victim services, and state and local victim services; services for crime victims and survivors; National Information and Referral Resources for Crime Victim/Survivor Assistance—20 national toll-free information, assistance, and referral numbers; and victim/offender and restorative justice programs.

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  • Prison Parenting Programs: Resources for Parenting Instructors in Prisons and Jails

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    Prison Parenting Programs: Resources for Parenting Instructors in Prisons and Jails

    This is a great resource for those correctional educators wanting to improve or start parenting programs. "The resources in this handbook are grouped according to the predominant focus of the program. Those programs comprised of several components are listed in the Multi-Faceted Programs section" (p. 2). Sections of this document include: multi-faceted programs; parenting skills programs; family support programs; parent/child book reading programs; re-entry programs; handbooks for incarcerated parents and their families; books on incarcerated parents and their families; videos on incarcerated parents and their families; and newsletters for parenting educators in correctional facilities.

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  • Predictive Analytics in Health Care and Criminal Justice: Three Case Studies

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    Predictive Analytics in Health Care and Criminal Justice: Three Case Studies

    "Organizations in both the health care and criminal justice fields have been using predictive analytics for a while, but predictive analytics are just beginning to be used in what may best be described as the hybrid field of health care and criminal justice. Predictive analytics are deployed in this hybrid field to anticipate the health needs of the justice-involved, and use this information to treat mental illness as well as other health problems. The underlying assumption is that these pre-emptive actions will reduce the risk of reoffending and reincarceration and thereby promote public safety. In the field of criminal justice, predictive analytics have already been shown to increase public safety through crime prevention" (p. 1). This issue paper presents three case studies showing how predictive analytics is being used by hybrid health and criminal justice systems. The case studies are: the Otsuka Digital Health (ODH) platform in Miami-Dade County used to divert the mentally ill from the local justice system; the utilization of Impact Pro by Centurion (the correctional health care provider for the states of Tennessee, Minnesota, Massachusetts, and Vermont) to treat incarcerated individuals; and the web-based RNR Simulation Tool which generates evidence-based treatment recommendations for the offender.

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  • Studying Deterrence Among High-Risk Adolescents

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    Studying Deterrence Among High-Risk Adolescents

    The impact of sanctions, whether threatened or applied, on deterrence of crime by high-risk adolescents is examined. Sections of this bulletin include: background; key terms; increasing deterrence through severity—institutional placement and length of stay; increasing deterrence through certainty—offenders' perceptions of risk; increasing certainty though arrest; behavioral responses to changes in risk perceptions—the certainty effect; the deterrent effect of ambiguity in offender risk perceptions; policy implications; and conclusion. Some of the results are: There was no meaningful reduction in offending or arrests in response to more severe punishment (e.g., correctional placement, longer stays); Policies targeting specific types of offending may be more effective at deterring youth from engaging in these specific offenses as opposed to general policies aimed at overall crime reduction; In response to an arrest, youth slightly increased their risk perceptions, which is a necessary condition for deterrence; Creating ambiguity about detection probabilities in certain areas or for certain types of crime may have a deterrent effect by enhancing the perceived risk of getting caught" (p. 1).

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  • Training Curriculum on Women and Imprisonment, Version 1.0

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    Training Curriculum on Women and Imprisonment, Version 1.0

    "This training curriculum, together with the UNODC Handbook on Women and Imprisonment, aims to assist legislators, policymakers, prison managers, staff and non-governmental organizations to acquire knowledge and skills to address the gender-specific needs of women prisoners and to explore and utilize ways to reduce their unnecessary imprisonment, in line with the provisions of the Bangkok Rules" (p. 9). The twelve modules comprising this training program are: identifying the needs of women prisoners and addressing discrimination; admission, registration, and allocation; health care; safety and security; contact with the outside world; prisoner rehabilitation; pregnant women and women with children in prison; special categories of women prisoners; preparation for release and post-release support; staff working with women prisoners; research, planning, and evaluation; and non-custodial measures. Appendixes cover: handout materials for participants; test questions and answers; training of trainers—background material; background on mental health and related issues in prisons; and End-of-Workshop Evaluation.

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  • Promising and Innovative Practices for Children of Incarcerated Parents: [Webinar]

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    Promising and Innovative Practices for Children of Incarcerated Parents: [Webinar]

    Nearly three million children under the age of 18 have a parent in jail or prison, and millions more have experienced their parents being arrested. Due to their parent’s criminal justice involvement, a growing body of research indicates that these children often experience trauma, family disruption, and the loss of their primary caregiver, which can lead to financial hardship, residential instability, and an array of emotional and behavioral problems.

    In response, several community-based organizations and government agencies across the country have implemented programs and practices aimed at reducing this trauma and mitigating the potentially harmful outcomes associated with parental criminal justice involvement. The Urban Institute and the National Institute of Corrections hosted a live webinar highlighting these promising and innovative programs and practices.

    This webinar is four sessions: Parental Arrest Protocols—"Focuses on protocols that police departments can use to manage the arrest of a parent to minimize the trauma and harm to their children"; Family Impact Statements—"Focuses on how probation departments can use family impact statements in their presentence investigation reports to account for the needs of family and children"; Family-Focused Jail Services—"Focuses on a few family-focused programs and services that jail administrators can offer to parents in their jails to help them stay connected to their family and children"; and Successful Collaboration—"Provides information on how to collaboratively think about and address the many issues facing children of incarcerated parents, using a diverse group of interested stakeholders". Presentation slides for these sessions are provided. Access is also provided to four publications "that complement the webinar sessions and aim to guide criminal justice organizations and stakeholders in developing and implementing promising practices for children of justice-involved parents. The products include three toolkits on parental arrest policies, family-focused jail programs, and family impact statements, as well as a framework document that synthesizes what we have learned about promising practices and provides information about the context surrounding children and their families. The products provide key challenges and recommendations for the field and help organizations and stakeholders (1) understand the importance, scope, and effect of the issues facing children of justice-involved parents; (2) learn how to talk about these issues with their constituencies; and (3) appreciate how changes in practice can make meaningful differences by strengthening the relationship between children and their parents and reducing the trauma children experience when their parents are arrested, detained, and sentenced.""

    Webinar
  • The Changing Relationship Between Ex-Criminals and Their Parole Officers

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    The Changing Relationship Between Ex-Criminals and Their Parole Officers

    "Oftentimes, parole and probation officers are the only positive role models offenders have. About a decade ago, criminologists began asking if parole and probation visits were a missed opportunity for law enforcement. What if officers developed a more supportive relationship with offenders? What if they demonstrated to clients that they weren’t just checking boxes and delivering sanctions? The working theory was that given some personal attention, offenders might be more receptive to advice about resolving conflicts and avoiding crime. Amid a flurry of academic journal articles and pilot projects, researchers from the University of Cincinnati developed EPICS, short for Effective Practices in Community Supervision, a new model for structured face-to-face meetings between officers and their clients … Since 2006, more than 80 state and county criminal justice departments have adopted EPICS , including Multnomah County. By focusing on behavioral change, rather than just threats of being thrown back in jail, EPICS and similar efforts may help break the cycle of incarceration … The guiding principle behind EPICS is that offenders need help learning how to approach life in a more constructive way. If they’re offered drugs, they need to know how to weigh the long-term cost of incarceration against the short-term benefit of getting high. They need to practice overriding impulsive responses to situations. More broadly, they need to understand how their default thought patterns, without a conscious effort to change, will lead to further crime and punishment" (p. 36-37). This article discusses: what EPICS entails—the four steps of check-in, review, intervention, and homework; difference between EPICS and traditional community supervision; the "black box" of EPICS' effectiveness; potential success of EPICS in Multnomah County, Oregon; the need for program fidelity; the fact that EPICS adds structure to offender-officer interactions and facilitating criminal behavior change; while some officers like EPICS, others don't; some offenders don't like it either; the future.

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  • Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting Aurora, Colorado, September 28-29, 2015

    Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting Aurora, Colorado, September 28-29, 2015 cover
    Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting Aurora, Colorado, September 28-29, 2015

    Sections of these proceedings are: "Introduction to the National Commission on Correctional Healthcare (NCCHC)" by Brent Gibson; "Identification of Programs of the Major Counties Sheriffs’ Association Members – Designed to Reduce Arrest and/or Incarceration of the Mentally Ill" by Andy Ferguson; "Planning and Implementing Effective Mental Health Services in Jails by David Stephens; "High Liability Inmates" by Henry Reyes; "Open Forum: Hot Topics"; "ACA Certified Corrections Professional (CCP) Program – Cost vs. Value for the Agency" by Kristen Furdyna; "The Case for Certification - American Jail Association" by Robert Kasabian; "National Sheriff’s Association Certifications" by Fred Wilson; association updates; "Legal Updates" by Carrie Hill; and future meeting topics.

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  • Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting Aurora, Colorado, March 22 – 24, 2015

    Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting Aurora, Colorado, March 22 – 24, 2015 cover
    Proceedings of the Large Jail Network Meeting Aurora, Colorado, March 22 – 24, 2015

    Sections of these proceedings are: "Program Session: Veterans—Courts, Housing, and Programs": "Part 1: Veterans: Considerations for Inmates and Staff" by Dane Collins, and "Part 2. The VA's Veterans Justice Programs and the Veterans Reentry Search Service" by Joel Rosenthal; "Program Session: Restrictive Housing: Step-Down Measures": "Part 1. Douglas County Special Management Unit—Segregation" by Mark Foxall, and "Part 2. Restrictive Housing" by Dane Collins; "Program Session: Re-Entry Programs and Partnerships with the Community": "Part 1. Opportunities in Jail Reentry" by A.T. Wall, "Part 2. Denver's TJC Experience: Transition from Jail to the Community" by Lisa Calderon, "Part 3. Southeast Regional Re-Entry and Rehabilitation Program" by Marlin Gusman; "Program Session: Data—What to Capture and How to Use It": "Part 1. Data: What We Should Capture and How We Should Use It" by Melissa Kovacs, and "Part 2. Data Collection for Performance Outcomes" by Marilyn Chandler Ford; "Program Session: Building the Jail's Workforce": "Part 1: Recruit, Hire, Train, and Retain a Diverse Workforce" by Charles Hank, and "Part 2. Orange County Corrections University & Recruitment" by Comita A. Riley; "Open Forum"; professional association updates; and future meeting topics.

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  • Safeguarding the Rights of Girls in the Criminal Justice System: Preventing Violence, Stigmatization and Deprivation of Liberty

    Safeguarding the Rights of Girls in the Criminal Justice System: Preventing Violence, Stigmatization and Deprivation of Liberty cover
    Safeguarding the Rights of Girls in the Criminal Justice System: Preventing Violence, Stigmatization and Deprivation of Liberty

    This report is an excellent resource explaining how the "criminal justice system should aim to prevent incidents of violence, bring perpetrators to justice, and ensure recovery and social reintegration for victims. Like any other group in society, women and girls are entitled to nothing less … however, the social, economic and cultural position of girls, together with deeply rooted discriminatory attitudes toward them in society as a whole, influence the attitudes and responses of the criminal justice system to heinous crimes of violence committed against them. Rather than benefitting from rehabilitation, protection and redress, girls who fall victim to violence often find themselves criminalized, which can lead, in turn, to further violence against them, inhuman punishment and unlawful deprivation of liberty. At the same time, perpetrators of violence against girls are rarely held accountable for their actions or deterred from committing further criminal acts" (p. 1). Sections comprising this document are: introduction—scope and purpose, an overview of violence against girls, the experience of girls in the criminal justice system, and factors contributing to the vulnerability of girls in the criminal justice system; gender-role stereotypes as a barrier to girls' access to justice; ensuring robust legislation to prevent and to respond to violence against girls; implementing comprehensive prevention programs; strengthening the capacity of the criminal justice system to prevent violence, stigmatization, and deprivation of liberty amongst girls; strengthening accountability and ending impunity; and conclusions and recommendations.

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