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  • Hepatitis C in Corrections: Innovations in Treatment and Management of a Public Health Challenge [Internet Broadcast]

    Hepatitis C in Corrections cover
    Hepatitis C in Corrections: Innovations in Treatment and Management of a Public Health Challenge [Internet Broadcast]

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is the most common blood-borne infection in the United States, with approximately three million persons living with current infection. Of the two million individuals incarcerated in US federal and state prisons, a February 2015 Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) special report states that 9.8% of these individuals have Hepatitis C. With the advent of a one pill per day treatment regimen, the management of Hepatitis C virus (HCV) in corrections is rapidly evolving.

    “Correctional health is a key to public health.” – (Retired) Vice Admiral Richard H. Carmona, M.D., M.P.H., FACS, United States Surgeon General.

    This internet broadcast from the National Institute of Correction (NIC) covers the newest innovations in treatment practices, protocols, and management of HCV and its implications for criminal justice, corrections organizations and public health.

    Topics discussed include the current prevalence of Hepatitis C in the general public in comparison to the correctional population, highlighting the importance of treating pervasive co-occurring substance use disorders. As one of the first lines of defense in public health, correctional agencies have a critical opportunity to screen, diagnose, and treat.

    We will identify several correctional systems throughout the country which are effectively managing their HCV infected population, focusing on successes and challenges of management. Presenters will also share recommendations and resources for jurisdictions looking to implement and improve upon existing programs.

    This broadcast will answer the following questions: What is the scope of HCV as an issue, while comparing and contrasting HCV prevalence in the general and corrections populations ; What is HCV?, How is it transmitted?, What is the current prevalence?, and What are current treatment options and related costs?; What are the policies, protocols and procedures implemented by agencies that are effectively managing HCV?; How can agencies improve the coordination of care and services for offenders upon release?; How can we proactively address current and future challenges such as developing and implementing consistent screening and treatment protocols; data collection; pharmaceutical cost management; and collaboration with local, state and federal partners?; and What are recommended resources and next steps for jurisdictions interested in implementing or improving an existing HCV program?

    Video
  • Developing and Implementing a PREA-Compliant Staffing Plan

    Developing and Implementing a PREA-Compliant Staffing Plan Cover
    Developing and Implementing a PREA-Compliant Staffing Plan

    "This paper identifies and explains the applicable PREA Standards and requirements, along with other influencing factors that impact a facility’s development, documentation and implementation of a PREA-compliant facility staffing plan. It is important to note that while current or traditional staffing models are helpful to a facility when developing the required staffing plan, these traditional models were developed prior to the passage of PREA. Therefore, they are not necessarily PREA-informed or constructed with a “lens” focused on sexual safety. Furthermore, traditional staffing models typically have not taken into account the significance of gender as an influencing factor" (p. 3). Sections of this Staffing Plan White Paper cover: what a PREA-compliant staffing plan requires—facility-specific PREA requirements, and influencing facility-specific factors; how to develop a staffing plan or improve the one that exists; who needs to be involved in the drafting or assessment of the facility staffing plan; considerations regarding facility-specific PREA requirements; other considerations—use of video monitoring, security staff ratios in juvenile facilities, trauma-informed approaches, and gender considerations in staffing plan development at adult female and juvenile girls' facilities; additional requirements under "supervision and monitoring"—staffing plan review, unannounced rounds, and heightened protections for vulnerable detainees; and how a staffing plan will be audited.

     

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  • The Sexual Abuse to Prison Pipeline: The Girls' Story

    The Sexual Abuse to Prison Pipeline: The Girls' Story Cover
    The Sexual Abuse to Prison Pipeline: The Girls' Story

    "This report exposes the ways in which we criminalize girls — especially girls of color — who have been sexually and physically abused, and it offers policy recommendations to dismantle the abuse to prison pipeline. It illustrates the pipeline with examples, including the detention of girls who are victims of sex trafficking, girls who run away or become truant because of abuse they experience, and girls who cross into juvenile justice from the child welfare system. By illuminating both the problem and potential solutions, we hope to make the first step toward ending the cycle of victimization-to-imprisonment for marginalized girls" (p. 5). This report is comprised of two primary sections. Girls' Paths of Sexual Abuse into the Juvenile Justice System: the proportion of girls, especially girls of color, in the juvenile justice system in increasing; girls in the juvenile justice system are disproportionately victims of sexual violence; girls’ behavioral reaction to sexual abuse and trauma is criminalized, reinforcing the sexual abuse to prison pipeline; the juvenile justice system typically fails to address, and often exacerbates, trauma that caused girls to be there; lived experience of the sexual abuse to prison pipeline--victims of sex trafficking jailed as offenders; lived experience of the sexual abuse to prison pipeline-- detention of girls who are status offenders; and in focus--dual-system youth and the sexual abuse to prison pipeline. Child Welfare and the Sexual Abuse to Prison Pipeline Identifying and Treating Trauma in the Child Welfare System.

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  • The Racial Geography of Mass Incarceration

    The Racial Geography of Mass Incarceration Cover
    The Racial Geography of Mass Incarceration

    This is an excellent report that addresses the critical issues surrounding the building of prisons in and the transfer of inmates to areas that are demographically different than the surrounding community. It provides food for thought regarding the ability of families to visit their loved one in prison, the hiring of minority correctional staff, and the degree to which prison gerrymandering occurs in the United States. "This report fills a critical gap in understanding the mass incarceration phenomenon: it offers a way to quantify the degree to which in each state mass incarceration is about sending Blacks and Latinos to communities with very different racial/ethnic make-ups than their own. We use data from the 2010 Census to compare the race and ethnicity of incarcerated people to that of the people in the surrounding county, finding that, for many counties, the racial and ethnic make-up of these populations is very different. This analysis addresses the degree to which each state’s use of the prison is about transferring people of color to communities that are very different from the communities that people in prison come from. This data does not address the bias in policing or sentencing found in individual counties; instead it reflects each state’s political decision to build prisons in particular locations." Sections of this report include: key findings; introduction; the racial geography of mass incarceration for Blacks; the racial geography of mass incarceration for Latinos; conclusion; Appendix A-- Counties: Total, incarcerated and non-incarcerated populations by race/ethnicity and ratios of overrepresentation; Appendix B--Percentiles of County Ratios by State for Blacks; Appendix C-- Percentiles of County Ratios by State for Latinos; and Appendix D--Portion of each state's incarcerated population that is incarcerated in disproportionately White counties.

    Web Page
  • Forecasting Future Inmate Population

    Forecasting Future Inmate Population Cover
    Forecasting Future Inmate Population

    "Correctional facilities are mission driven. Data is relatively low priority, yet it is often data, and what it reveals, that forms the basis of correctional needs assessments. Projected Daily Population (ADP), in particular, is the foundation of every needs assessment" (p. 39). This article concisely explains how to use ADP to forecast population for your agency or facility. Sections of this article cover: straight line forecasting of ADP; the inevitability of change in admissions (ADM) and average length of stay (ALOS); Little's Law—ADP=(ADM/T) x ALOS (T being the days of duration being looked at like a week, month, year); historical analysis; historical ADP, ADM, and ALOS; forecasting future ADP—admissions first; estimating future ADP; and the assumption of change.

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  • Heat in US Prisons and Jails: Corrections and the Challenge of Climate Change

    Heat in US Prisons and Jails: Corrections and the Challenge of Climate Change Cover
    Heat in US Prisons and Jails: Corrections and the Challenge of Climate Change

    This is an excellent paper which "addresses two important but largely neglected questions: How will increased temperatures and heat waves caused by climate change affect prisons, jails, and their staff and inmate populations? And what can correctional departments do to prepare for greater heat and minimize the dangers it poses? … Until now, the implications of climate change for corrections have been largely disregarded by both correctional administrators and public officials working on climate adaptation policy. This paper begins the process of connecting the discussions of climate policy and correctional policy. It provides an overview of the correctional sector and its specific vulnerabilities to heat, explores relevant legal issues, and offers recommendations for adaptation to address unique challenges that climate change poses for corrections" (p. i). Sections following an executive summary include: introduction; overview of the correctional sector—jurisdictions and administration, existing facilities, inmate populations, correctional staff population; heat, corrections, and the law—inmate litigation, the Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act, legal action by correctional staff, policies and regulations concerning heat and climate control in corrections, mandated adaptation efforts, and the legal context for adaptation; adaptation challenges and options—the basics of adaptation, special challenges for corrections, and options; and conclusion. An appendix includes examples from various agencies of policies and regulations concerning heat and climate control in corrections.

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  • Maltreatment in Juvenile Corrections Facilities: An Update

    Maltreatment in Juvenile Corrections Facilities: An Update Cover
    Maltreatment in Juvenile Corrections Facilities: An Update

    "This report, released as a follow-up to No Place For Kids, 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." Two sections follow and introduction and summary: findings from No Place for Kids on the nature, breadth, and extent of maltreatment and abuse in juvenile corrections facilities; and new information about maltreatment in state-funded juvenile correctional facilities. Appendixes cover: additional states with proven maltreatment; recidivist states; and new evidence of and attention to maltreatment. This website provides access to the State-by-State Summary of Systematic or Recurring Maltreatment in Justice Correctional Facilities. You can also find information specific to your state. "The troubling evidence presented in this report should remove any remaining doubt that large conventional juvenile corrections facilities — or plainly stated, youth prisons — are inherently prone to abuse. Given public officials’ inability to prevent maltreatment, or even to clean up youth prisons where inhumane conditions are revealed, it seems difficult to argue that confinement in these institutions offers a safe approach for rehabilitating delinquent youth" (p. 29).

    Mixed Media
  • Hepatitis C in Correctional Settings: Challenges and Opportunities

    Hepatitis C in Correctional Settings: Challenges and Opportunities Cover
    Hepatitis C in Correctional Settings: Challenges and Opportunities

    "This monograph presents the results of a national survey on hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in corrections in the U.S. This survey looked at both the current and future management of HCV infected patients in the nation’s correctional systems … The survey questions were designed to address six key areas to better understand how HCV infection is managed in corrections. These areas included policy/clinical guidelines, prevalence, current treatment practices, prevention/education strategies, the cost of current treatment and the estimated future cost of treatment using new medications that have recently become available. The findings are presented along with recommendations drawn from those findings that offer guidance to correctional systems as they move forward in treating HCV infection" (p. 1). Sections following an executive summary include: introduction; background; the CCHA (Coalition of Correctional Health Authorities) Hepatitis C Survey; results for the burden of HCV infection in prisons and jails—screening, prevalence, measures of true prevalence, diagnosed prevalence, other prevalence information, case burden, HCV treatment guidelines, patient selection criteria, patient education and substance abuse disorder treatment, current treatment costs, and estimated future costs; discussion--prevalence of HCV infection in corrections, treatment of HCV infection in corrections, and substance use and other prevention; and six recommendations. Some of the results include: the prevalence of HCV infection in correctional setting is much greater than the prevalence in the general population; most correctional agencies are treating HVC infection using treatment procedures much like those used in the community; and the great cost of new medications make it very hard for correctional facilities to treat a substantial number of HCV infected inmates.

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  • Veterans Treatment Courts: Do Status-Based Problem-Solving Courts Create an Improper Privileged Class of Criminal Defendants?

    Veterans Treatment Courts: Do Status-Based Problem-Solving Courts Create an Improper Privileged Class of Criminal Defendants? Cover
    Veterans Treatment Courts: Do Status-Based Problem-Solving Courts Create an Improper Privileged Class of Criminal Defendants?

    "Although veterans treatment courts themselves are a recent and developing innovation, veteran status and its intersection with criminal sentencing considerations has an increasingly substantial legal basis to draw on. Prior to the expansion of problem-solving courts to reach veterans, many state-level trial court judges already considered military service-related disorders as potential mitigating factors. More recently, several states have either passed or proposed legislation designating veteran or active military status as a statutory mitigating factor, and current federal sentencing guidelines follow a 2009 Supreme Court decision affirming the proper role of a defendant’s military history in the penalty phase. Given the weight of political and legal decisions supporting veteran status as a mitigating factor in criminal cases, veterans treatment courts might ultimately demonstrate the advantages of treatment as an alternative to incarceration" (p. 310). This paper is divided into five parts. Part I—Introduction. Part II—development of veterans treatment courts; the veterans treatment court model; policy rationale for veterans courts; and controversy. Part III—state statutes in North Carolina, California, Minnesota, and other notable state bills; federal courts' consideration of veteran status—Porter v. McCollum, Federal Sentencing Guidelines, and non-statutory state sentencing practices. Part IV—Analysis: veterans treatment courts are correspond with current criminal sentencing; veterans treatment courts are good public policy; and how veterans treatment courts should proceed in consideration of criticisms. Part V—Conclusion.

     

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  • Trauma Among Youth in the Juvenile Justice System

    Trauma Among Youth in the Juvenile Justice System Cover
    Trauma Among Youth in the Juvenile Justice System

    Many types of traumatic experiences occur in the lives of children and adolescents from all walks of life. Often, the after-effects of these experiences – persistent, post-traumatic stress reactions – play a role in the legal and behavioral problems that bring youth in contact with law enforcement and the juvenile justice system … Using a trauma-informed approach, juvenile justice systems can improve outcomes for justice-involved youth by: Better matching youth with trauma services that can reduce the impact of traumatic stress; Improving general conditions of confinement; [and] Preventing the harmful and inadvertent “re-traumatization” of youth." Sections cover: what psychological trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) are, and how these affect youth and families; survival mode in youth with PTSD; why youth who are involved in the juvenile justice system are especially at risk for problems with traumatic stress; what constitutes trauma-informed services within juvenile justice systems—universal screening, assessment, and trauma treatment interventions; what also contributes to a trauma-informed perspective—creating trauma-informed environments, and collaborating across systems; what the benefits and challenges of a trauma-informed juvenile justice system are; guidance from the field for youth and families, juvenile justice systems, and examples of programs; and additional resources.

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  • Community-Based Responses to Justice-Involved Young Adults

    Community-Based Responses to Justice-Involved Young Adults Cover
    Community-Based Responses to Justice-Involved Young Adults

    "This bulletin proposes a new criminal justice paradigm for young men and women ages 18 to 24. Noting that the human brain has been clinically shown to not fully mature prior to the mid-20s, the authors suggest new institutional methods and processes for young adult justice that can meet the realities of life for today’s disadvantaged youth involved in crime and the criminal justice system. The authors envision a system that extends the reach of the juvenile court to reflect a modern understanding of the transition into adulthood. Their primary recommendation is that the age of juvenile court jurisdiction be raised to 21, with additional, gradually diminishing protections for young adults up to age 24 or 25." Sections include: introduction and history; why young adults are a distinct population—brain development in young adults, and the changing context of adulthood; current outcomes for justice-involved youth; implications for an age-responsive criminal justice system—pre-arrest and arrest, pretrial, courts, community-based programs, incarceration, and collateral Consequences; San Francisco Adult Probation Transitional Age Youth (TAY) Unit; Roca—a model community program for high-risk young men in Massachusetts; future facilities in New York and California; and conclusion.

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  • The Effect of Montana's 24/7 Sobriety Program on DUI Re-arrest Insights from a Natural Experiment with Limited Administrative Data

    The Effect of Montana's 24/7 Sobriety Program on DUI Re-arrest Insights from a Natural Experiment with Limited Administrative Data Cover
    The Effect of Montana's 24/7 Sobriety Program on DUI Re-arrest Insights from a Natural Experiment with Limited Administrative Data

    "Alcohol imposes significant social costs on the residents of Montana. The state has one of the highest alcohol-related traffic fatality rates in the nation, and alcohol accounts for more than one-eighth of deaths among working aged adults statewide. 24/7 Sobriety requires alcohol-involved offenders to abstain from alcohol and submit to frequent alcohol testing; those failing or missing a test face an immediate, but brief, jail term" (p. 1). This paper evaluates the effectiveness of the 24/7 Sobriety program. 24/7 uses a preliminary breath test (PBT) twice per day immediately on release into the community. Participation in the 24/7 Sobriety program reduced the possibility of DUI re-arrest by approximately 58%.

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  • Jails in America: A Report on Podular Direct Supervision

    Jails in America: A Report on Podular Direct Supervision
    Jails in America: A Report on Podular Direct Supervision

    This video is an excellent introduction to the use of podular direct supervision. Topics discussed include: the three types of jails in the United States—linear intermittent surveillance, podular remote surveillance, and podular direct supervision; the eight key principles of direct supervision; seven key direct supervision strategies; the housing unit officer; and education and activities. "Podular direct supervision is a proven, viable, and economical alternative to more traditional methods." Scott County Jail is highlighted in this program.

    Video
  • Veterans Treatment Courts: A Second Chance for Vets Who Have Lost Their Way [Internet Broadcast]

    Veterans Treatment Courts cover
    Veterans Treatment Courts: A Second Chance for Vets Who Have Lost Their Way [Internet Broadcast]

    This program on justice-involved veterans, highlights the lifesaving role being played by veterans treatment courts (VTCs) across the country.

    From WWII through the continuing global war on terror, there are approximately 21.5 million veterans in the U.S. today. So many of these men, and increasingly women, return home damaged mentally and physically from their time in service. These wounds often contribute to their involvement in the criminal justice system. As a result, veterans are overrepresented in our jails and prisons.

    For these justice-involved vets, Veterans Treatment Courts are providing a pathway to recovery so that they can be restored to functioning and contributing members of society.

    Veterans Treatment Courts, or VTCs, provide hope, restore families and save lives. The first VTC, founded in 2008 in Buffalo, New York, has inspired the creation of more than 220 courts of similar nature in jurisdictions, both large and small, across the country. Hundreds more are in various stages of planning and implementation.

    These courts have the support of the communities they serve, as well as the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and local service providing agencies. Critical to the success of VTCs are veterans who volunteer to be trained and serve as mentors to justice-involved veterans.

    This training program will: Introduce Veterans Treatment Courts as an effective intervention and an alternative to incarceration for justice-involved veterans; Identify the unique issues which contribute to veterans’ involvement in the criminal justice system at the local, state and federal levels; Highlight the inception of Veterans Treatment Courts and the role they play in improving public safety, reducing recidivism, saving taxpayer dollars and, most importantly, restoring the lives of those who have served our country; Showcase model Veterans Treatment Court Programs, including Veterans Peer Mentor Programs; Demonstrate how to implement and sustain an effective VTC, including the vital role of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Veteran Peer Mentors; and Provide resources and next steps for jurisdictions interested in implementing a Veterans Treatment Court or looking to improve an existing program.

    Video
    Streaming Video
    Mixed Media
  • Isolation and Reintegration: Punishment Circa 2014|Revised

    Isolation and Reintegration: Punishment Circa 2014|Revised
    Isolation and Reintegration: Punishment Circa 2014|Revised

    "This collection of materials, which was provided as a starting point for the discussion, describes current patterns of incarceration and explores interventions designed to reduce the degree to which correctional facilities maintain order through the isolation of prisoners, both through the locating of prison facilities and the placement of people within them."

    The text is divided into three chapters. Chapter 1. Isolation by Place and by Rule--Mapping Prison Placements, the Impact of Gender, and the Challenges of Distance: the power of placement; law and placement; locating and relocating prisons; attending to difference; and bridging distances—the cost of contact. Living Together or Apart--Isolation in Place, Oversight, and Alternatives: policies and practices for segregation placement and programs; inclusion, exclusion, and subpopulations; reassessing segregation; and legitimacy and authority in prions. And The Political Economies of Change--Setting Agendas: getting out of where we are—framing how and why we got here; reformatting prison practices—a snapshot of the current spending paradigm, the "reinvestment paradigm", and prisons as providers of social services and education's potential and political freight; and oversight outside prison.

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  • Insight-Out

    Insight-Out Cover
    Insight-Out

    "Insight-Out organizes initiatives for prisoners and challenged youth that create the personal and systemic change to transform violence and suffering into opportunities for learning and healing." These initiatives are: GRIP (Guiding Rage into Power); Veterans Healing Veterans; Prison Mindfulness Initiative (PMI); At Risk Youth; and Prison Reform. Points of entry include: about us; programs; training/talks; Insights blog; latest news; newsletter; A Blast From The Past; audio presentations; stories from prison; and books and research.

    Web Page
  • Corrections Key Statistics

    Corrections Key Statistics
    Corrections Key Statistics

    "Key Statistics provides easy access to trend data from BJS's [Bureau of Justice Statistic's] data collections. Each Key Statistic includes a description, table, and graph, along with links to related information, including publications that include the statistics, data collections, and any available data analysis tools." Key Statistics are provided for the total U.S. correctional population, prisoners, jail inmates, probationers, parolees, rate of correctional supervision, incarceration rate, community supervision rate, and executions. More topics will be added in the future.

    Web Page
  • A Women’s Typology of Pathways to Serious Crime With Custody and Treatment Implications

    Women’s Pathways to Serious and Habitual Crime Cover
    A Women’s Typology of Pathways to Serious Crime With Custody and Treatment Implications

    Criminal career patterns, social context and features, psychological factors, potential matches in prior pathways research, sub-types, and treatment goals are provided for the following types of women's pathways to crime: "Type 1 - Quasi-Normal non-violent women with drug/alcohol issues"; "Type 2 - Lifelong Victims, many of whom have abusive partners, drug problems and depression"; "Type 3 - Socialized Subcultural Pathways, poor and marginalized but with low victimization and few mental health problems"; "Type 4 - Aggressive Antisocial, high risk/high need and victimized, mental health issues"; [and] women offenders not classified.

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  • How To Explain A Parent's Arrest To A Child

    How To Explain A Parent's Arrest To A Child Cover
    How To Explain A Parent's Arrest To A Child

    These four pocket-sized cards are wonderful tools to remind law enforcement staff about the impacts on a child whose parents are being arrested or incarcerated. Sections of each card explain: child's perception of arrest; what to say; how children might act and how you should respond; and when arrest is a raid or domestic violence (DV) response. There is one card each for: Toddler—Ages 1 to 4; Preschool—Ages 4 to 5; School Age—Ages 6 to 12; and Adolescence—Ages 13 to 18.

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  • Research Update on DWI Courts

    Research Update on DWI Courts Cover
    Research Update on DWI Courts

    This review demonstrates the effectiveness of DWI Courts on DWI recidivism and general recidivism while they provide significant cost savings to taxpayers. Sections of this document cover: conclusions of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB); effects on recidivism; duration of effects; motor vehicle crashes; cost-effectiveness; and concluding remarks of tangible and intangible benefits. "That DWI Courts reduce recidivism is no longer a matter of debate or conjecture. The most conservative estimate is that DWI Courts reduce DWI recidivism and general criminal recidivism approximately 12 percent better than other sentencing options, and the best DWI Courts are as much as 60 percent better. Contrary to assumptions, DWI Courts often do not cost more to administer than traditional probation because they shorten the time period required to supervise offenders and reduce overreliance on incarceration. Taking into account the cost benefits achieved from better outcomes, DWI Courts have saved local communities nearly $1,500 per participant within two years and more than $5,000 per graduate" (p. 6).

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  • Intensive Vipassana Meditation Practice: An Intervention with Promise for Traumatized Prisoners

    Intensive Vipassana Meditation Practice: An Intervention with Promise for Traumatized Prisoners Cover
    Intensive Vipassana Meditation Practice: An Intervention with Promise for Traumatized Prisoners

    "Very few prisons have mental health treatment programs, and the few available, which range from educational to cognitive and behavioral in nature, do not have the capacity to treat chronic trauma and PTSD. The daily environment of prisons – aggressive and often violent, with any indication of vulnerability or weakness potentially life threatening – means such programs cannot fulfill the requirements of safe and effective trauma treatment, especially for processing and integrating memories … Similarly, mindfulness and meditation programs cannot provide safe and effective trauma treatment in prisons, although evidence suggests they can reduce inmates’ stress and anxiety and increase their self-regulation capacities. Here we present an approach that, although new to prison-based trauma intervention, is over 2,000 years old: an intensive, 10-day Vipassana meditation course which has been conducted inside a maximum-security prison since 2002. We briefly make the case that intensive, traditional and communal Vipassana practice makes good sense and holds great promise as a short-term prison-based trauma treatment that can provide stabilization, skills development, and safe and effective opportunities to process traumatic memories" (p. 1). Sections of this chapter include: introduction; prison culture—hyper-masculinity and violence; stages of recovery and treatment; trauma-informed correctional care; contemplative practices as trauma treatment—implications for prisoners; Buddhist psychology and Vipassana meditation; bringing Vipassana inside—the case of a maximum-security prison in Alabama; preliminary outcome research and two prisoner's reflections; conclusion and implications.

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  • Trauma, stress, grief, loss, and separation among older adults in prison: the protective role of coping on physical and mental wellness

    Trauma, Stress, Grief, Loss, and Separation among Older Adults in Prison: The Protective Role of Coping on Physical and Mental Wellness Cover
    Trauma, stress, grief, loss, and separation among older adults in prison: the protective role of coping on physical and mental wellness

    "Recent evidence suggests that older adults in prison experience a high level of adverse life experiences that can be categorized as trauma, stress, grief and loss. However, there is a dearth of research that examines how older adults’ use of physical, cognitive, emotional, social, and spiritual coping resources influence their physical and mental well-being" (p. 1). This study aims to address this scarcity. Sections cover: the aging prison population crisis; demographics; cost of incarceration—financial and moral; pathways to prison; explanatory perspective and theories; a review of the relevant literature; coping and wellbeing; study objectives; method; data analysis; results according to history of traumatic and stress life experiences, socio-demographic profile, and frequencies and percentages of the occurrence of traumatic experiences, age of first occurrence, and subjective response at the time and now; path analysis; discussion; policy implications; limitations of the current study; future research directions; and conclusion. It appears that "the lifetime experiences of multiple types of trauma, stress, grief, separation, and loss are common among older adults in prison and place them at risk for later-life physical and mental decline. Multidimensional coping strategies that address physical, cognitive, emotional, social, and spiritual domains are promising intervention techniques that can improve wellbeing among older adults in prison" (p. 1).

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  • New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness: NIC's Second Virtual Conference

    New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness: NIC's Second Virtual Conference cover
    New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness: NIC's Second Virtual Conference

    On June 10, 2015, the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) launched a national virtual conference on staff wellness titled “New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness.” Session topics will include using neuroscience to reduce stress, “healing corrections,” the organizational implications of boundary violations, creating a purpose-driven corrections career, corrections personnel suicide, and staff wellness.

    The objective of “New Directions in Corrections: Staff Wellness” is to: Educate corrections staff on the subject of corrections fatigue and staff wellness; Present strategies and resources for countering the effects of corrections trauma and fatigue; and Equip corrections staff with strategies they can use to move toward professional fulfillment individually and within a workplace culture.

    Corrections work often takes a toll on staff’s well-being and functioning due to repeated exposure to multiple types of inherent occupational stressors—specifically, operational, organizational, and traumatic stressors. The cumulative effect of these co-occurring stressors upon corrections professionals and upon entire correctional workplace cultures is captured by the umbrella term and construct of “corrections fatigue.” Effects of corrections fatigue may be low staff morale, impaired job performance, individual health and functioning issues, problematic professional and personal relationships, and high staff turnover. Corrections fatigue includes a variety of facets, many interacting to affect staff negatively and envelop workplace culture in a self-reinforcing cycle that undermines health, functioning, and fulfillment.

    This microsite provides access to the eight presentations and links to additional resources.

    Mixed Media
  • Risk and Needs Assessment in the Criminal Justice System

    Risk and Needs Assessment in the Criminal Justice System
    Risk and Needs Assessment in the Criminal Justice System

    "There have been legislative proposals to implement a risk and needs assessment system in federal prisons. The system would be used to place inmates in rehabilitative programs. Under the proposed system some inmates would be eligible to earn additional time credits for participating in rehabilitative programs that reduce their risk of recidivism. Such credits would allow inmates to be placed on prerelease custody earlier. The proposed system would exclude inmates convicted of certain offenses from being eligible to earn additional time credits … In general, research suggests that the most commonly used assessment instruments can, with a moderate level of accuracy, predict who is at risk for violent recidivism. It also suggests that no single instrument is superior to any other when it comes to predictive validity" (p. ii). While assessments based on the Risk-Needs-Responsivity (RNR) model have been quite useful in determining high- and low-risk offenders there is still some controversy regarding the wide-scale use of assessments in the criminal justice system. Sections of this report following a summary include: an overview of risk and needs assessment; RNR principles; critiques of risk and needs assessments—making judgment about individuals based on group tendencies, the separation of assessment of risk from assessment of needs, and the potential for discriminatory effects; and select issues for congress regarding—the use of risk and needs assessment in federal prisons, the exclusion of certain inmates from earning additional time credits, whether priority should be given to high-risk offenders, the use of assessment in sentencing, and whether the emphasis on punishment should be decreased.

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  • Mortality In Local Jails And State Prisons, 2000–2013 - Statistical Tables

    Mortality In Local Jails And State Prisons, 2000–2013 - Statistical Tables cover
    Mortality In Local Jails And State Prisons, 2000–2013 - Statistical Tables

    "Presents national and state-level data on the number of inmate deaths that occurred in local jails and state prisons, the distribution of deaths across jails, and the aggregate count of deaths in federal prisons. The report presents annual counts and 14-year trends between 2000 and 2013 in deaths in custody. It provides mortality rates per 100,000 inmates in custody in jail or prison; details the causes of death, including deaths attributed to homicide, suicide, illness, intoxication, and accidental injury; describes decedents' characteristics, including age, sex, race or Hispanic origin, legal and hold status, and time served; and specifies the state where the deaths occurred. Data are from the Bureau of Justice Statistics' Deaths in Custody Reporting Program, initiated in 2000 under the Death in Custody Reporting Act of 2000 (P.L. 106-297). Some highlights include: local jail inmate deaths increased 1%, from 958 deaths in 2012 to 967 deaths in 2013; suicides in local jails increased 9%, from 300 suicides in 2012 to 327 in 2013; deaths in prison increased from 3,357 in 2012 to 3,479 in 2013, reaching the highest number since the prison data collection began in 2001--total number of deaths increased 4% between 2012 and 2013; Illness-related deaths accounted for 89% of all deaths in prison in 2013.

    Web Page
  • Trauma-Informed Care and Trauma-Specific Services: A Comprehensive Approach to Trauma Intervention

    Trauma-Informed Care and Trauma-Specific Services: A Comprehensive Approach to Trauma Intervention cover
    Trauma-Informed Care and Trauma-Specific Services: A Comprehensive Approach to Trauma Intervention

    "This brief addresses the need for a comprehensive approach to trauma intervention across service settings. In doing so, we define these complementary approaches, identify core principles and current practice for each, and discuss how both are being integrated across service sectors. Finally, we identify next steps for providers, researchers, and policymakers to ensure that all service systems are prepared to sustain this comprehensive approach to trauma intervention" (p. 1) "“Trauma-specific services” and “trauma-informed care” are sometimes used interchangeably; both provide care for people exposed to traumatic stress. However, trauma-specific services are clinical interventions, whereas trauma-informed care addresses organizational culture and practice. Trauma-specific services are clinical interventions that are designed to address trauma-related symptoms and PTSD directly in individuals and groups. In contrast, trauma-informed care is defined as a universal framework that requires changes to the practices, policies, and culture of an entire organization, so all staff have the awareness, knowledge, and skills needed to support trauma survivors" (p. 4). Sections of this publication include: introduction; prevalence and impact of traumatic stress; trauma-specific vs. trauma-informed; trauma-informed care and trauma-specific services—why both are needed; trauma intervention across service systems; next steps for the field; and conclusion.

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  • Silence to Signs: Bridging the Communication Gap for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Inmates in Prisons

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    Silence to Signs: Bridging the Communication Gap for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Inmates in Prisons

    There is a major lack of information about offenders with hearing disorders. Therefore this report is amazingly important. Any agency with deaf offenders needs to read this document. "This article addresses issues regarding deaf prisoners’ right to communication and provides a thorough understanding of Deaf culture and communication, and the importance of sign language to both of these. The project attempts to dig deeper into the research question of how sign language is inseparably linked to effective communication access for deaf and hard of hearing people. Secondly, it addresses whether if American Sign Language (ASL) classes should be offered in prisons" (p. 1). Sections following an executive summary include: background to violations of the American with Disabilities Act (ACA) and human rights; issues related to the prison system and deaf culture—misconceptions, no universal sign language, ASL's grammar and dictionary, lipreading as an inadequate mode of communication, aggressiveness, additional issues, advancing technology with prisons lagging behind, and the key of communication access; the project and its development; data and findings regarding a proposed ASL class; recommendations for implementing an ASL class; and conclusion.

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  • Washington Corrections Center for Women TEDx Talks

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    Washington Corrections Center for Women TEDx Talks

    This website provides access to TEDx videos given at the Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW) "Does Gender Matter" event on March 14, 2015. Topics range from the "Northern Cree Women's Honor Song" by the Broken Wing Center, "Tell Me You Don’t See" by Tiffany Williams, "Summon Your Courage" by Cathryn Cummings, "The Hard Stuff" by Felice Davis, "Judging Societie by Women's Prison" by Emily Salisbury, to "Coming to a Neighborhood Near Your" by Marriam Oliver". There are 21 talks.

    Mixed Media
  • Rights of Rastafarian Employees and Inmates

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    Rights of Rastafarian Employees and Inmates

    "Rastafarians are named after Ras (Prince) Tafari, Selassie’s title before being crowned Emperor in 1930. The movement later was influenced by Jamaicans. There are estimates that there are as many as one million adherents to the religion worldwide. In the U.S., most adherents are African-Americans. Rastafarians engage in the spiritual use of cannabis, wear their hair in dreadlocks and are generally opposed to cutting their hair. The Ital vegetarian diet is one of the main tenets of the Rastafari movement. Those who adhere to it abstain from all meat and flesh whatsoever, asserting that to touch meat is to touch death. Some Rastafarians, however, do eat some meat nevertheless, but no pork or shellfish" (p. 201). This article covers legal issues associated with Rastafarian staff and inmates and provides suggestions for addressing these challenges. Sections of this publication include: introduction; Rastafarian employees; Rastafarian inmates; and suggestions to consider.

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  • Minimize Compassion Fatigue, Avoid Burnout and Reignite Your Passion

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    Minimize Compassion Fatigue, Avoid Burnout and Reignite Your Passion

    This is an excellent introduction to compassion fatigue (CF) (aka corrections fatigue) experienced by correctional health care staff. "While there is some literature on CF and burnout among correctional officers, there is scant information on how these phenomena affect correctional health care staff. This article discusses ways that CF may adversely impact the well-being of qualified mental health professionals who work in jail and prison settings. When left untreated, CF may result in serious and detrimental personal costs to the individual and organization. These costs can be mitigated by positive self-care, which also will be addressed in this article" (p. 10). Sections of this article cover: what compassion fatigue is; the role of trauma; why we neglect ourselves; the importance of prevention; compassion satisfaction—the flip side of CF; calendar it—planning ahead for self-care; organizational considerations; and taking care of yourself.

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  • Pretrial Assistance to California Counties: (PACC): Humboldt County Technical Assistance Report

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    Pretrial Assistance to California Counties: (PACC): Humboldt County Technical Assistance Report

    "This report provides an overview of technical assistance process and results in Humboldt County. It describes CJI work with Humboldt County officials to identify goals, make process improvements, and measure outcomes. It also describes challenges for Humboldt County—and potentially for other California jurisdictions—as they work to improve the pretrial justice system going forward." Sections of this publication include: introduction; background; California Policy Reform—Senate Bill 678 and Assembly Bill 109; PACC technical assistance process; key findings regarding release methods, pretrial screening, and additional findings; Humboldt's goals and strategies in implementing a Supervised Release Program (SRP); and looking forward to addressing release timing, and Proposition 47.

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  • Tribal Legal Code Resource: Domestic Violence Laws Guide for Drafting or Revising Victim-Centered Tribal Laws Against Domestic Violence

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    Tribal Legal Code Resource: Domestic Violence Laws Guide for Drafting or Revising Victim-Centered Tribal Laws Against Domestic Violence

    "All governments should be very concerned about domestic violence against Native women. Tribal governments across the United States are creating programs to improve response to violent crime. As sovereign governments, tribes can assert jurisdiction in criminal and civil actions involving assaults against Native women … As sovereign governments, many tribes have asserted concurrent or exclusive criminal and/or civil jurisdiction in domestic violence cases. A key piece of responding to domestic violence is to draft or revise tribal domestic violence laws. This resource guide was developed to provide a starting point for drafting or revising tribal laws on domestic violence. It is written with a philosophy that tribal laws should reflect tribal values. In addition, writing a tribal law usually requires careful consideration of how state and/or federal laws might apply in the community. This resource guide includes examples from a variety of tribal codes and discussion questions that are designed to help tribal community members decide on the best laws for your community" (p. 1). Resources are organized into the following sections: general provisions; jurisdiction—criminal or civil; criminal domestic violence statutes—defining domestic violence, role of law enforcement, role of tribal prosecutors, role of courts, evidence, victims' rights in criminal proceedings, and sanctions; protective orders—developing civil protective orders, violating protective orders, and full faith and credit; family law and child custody; and education and batterer intervention.

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  • Women, Trauma & Incarceration: What They Say, How We Work

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    Women, Trauma & Incarceration: What They Say, How We Work

    This presentation is a very good introduction for the impact of trauma on female offenders, and the need for justice-informed practices. It may be from Canada, but it speaks to all of the issues facing female trauma and incarceration in the United States. Topics discussed include: why trauma is an important issue; defining trauma; vicarious trauma; trauma-informed practices; voices of trauma—a call for help; triggers and trauma reactions; trauma-informed versus trauma-specific; where trauma-informed practices should be used; guidelines for trauma-informed practices in women's substance use services; trauma-informed vs. not trauma-informed; pathways to trauma-informed practices; and future directions.

    Mixed Media
  • Restrictive Housing FAQ

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    Restrictive Housing FAQ

    "Restrictive housing, sometimes known as administrative segregation, is the practice of housing some inmates separately from the general population of a correctional institution and imposing restrictions on their movement, behavior, and privileges." This compilation of answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ) informs the reader about the concerns surrounding the use of restrictive housing (aka administrative housing, departmental segregation, and security housing units). Topics covered are: what restrictive housing is and how it works; why it is used; what the conditions are in restrictive housing; whether restrictive housing is different from solitary confinement; the commonality of restrictive housing use and whether its population is growing; why it is controversial; the fiscal impact of restrictive housing; and the impact of restrictive housing on mental health.

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  • Creating an Effective Pretrial Program: A Toolkit for Practitioners

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    Creating an Effective Pretrial Program: A Toolkit for Practitioners

    Pretrial program models "have evolved considerably in recent decades, and there is evidence to show that they can be more successful than the money bail system at ensuring public safety and court appearance. There are many evidence-based options available to communities seeking to implement or strengthen pretrial programs … Many counties are now exploring such programs, asking critical questions about whom among those awaiting trial needs to be in jail and who can be managed successfully in the community. This toolkit offers guidance to county officials on how to develop and operate these programs at the local level, building upon available literature on effective pretrial policies and practices" (p. 1). Sections of this toolkit are: introduction; an overview of pretrial; pretrial programs—risk assessment; diversion; supervision; assessing pretrial effectiveness; ongoing measurement and enhancement; and conclusion. An appendix includes the fact sheet "What does California state law say about pretrial release?"

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  • Constitutional Implications of Restrictive Housing

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    Constitutional Implications of Restrictive Housing

    "The prison setting imposes greater than normal restrictions on liberty, privacy, and communication. As a result, the prison comes under greater legal scrutiny regarding extent of the restrictions and deprivations of those restrictions and deprivations. Within the prison setting, the placement of inmates in restrictive housing or administrative segregation generates even greater judicial scrutiny due to the level of restriction, reasonableness of the placement and the indeterminate length of the segregation. Even with the proper policies in place, the conditions and programming in restrictive housing require careful review and attention for any correctional facility. In the past few decades, prisoners and prisoner right advocates have successfully challenged many departments on the use of restrictive housing. The following presents a brief overview of the areas in which departments have faced legal challenges" (p. 1). Constitutional challenges regarding restrictive housing in the recent past have been made based on First Amendment, Fourth Amendment, Sixth Amendment, Eighth Amendment, and the Fourteenth Amendment.

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  • Exploring the Impact of Supervision on Pretrial Outcomes

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    Exploring the Impact of Supervision on Pretrial Outcomes

    "The current study seeks to investigate the effect of pretrial supervision on the likelihood of failure to appear (FTA) and new criminal activity (NCA) before case disposition. First, drawing on data from two states, this research isolates two groups of defendants: those released pending case disposition with supervision and those released without supervision. Second, this research compares the two groups across several descriptive factors regarding likelihood of FTA and NCA while in the community pending case disposition" (p. 3). Sections following an executive summary include: introduction; sample description; and findings regarding the impact of pretrial supervision on the likelihood of FTA and NCA while awaiting case disposition. When moderate- and high-risk defendants had pretrial supervision they were 33% less likely not to appear in court, while all those defendants who were supervised for 180 days or more were 36% less likely to be re-arrested for new offenses.

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  • Campaign Against Indiscriminate Juvenile Shackling (CAIJS)

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    Campaign Against Indiscriminate Juvenile Shackling (CAIJS)

    "The indiscriminate shackling of youth unnecessarily humiliates, stigmatizes, and traumatizes them. The practice impedes the attorney-client relationship, chills juveniles’ constitutional right to due process, runs counter to the presumption of innocence, and draws into question the rehabilitative ideals of the juvenile court. CAIJS works with advocates, judges, members of the media, and medical professionals in states across the country to both educate stakeholders on the harms of shackling young people, and promote laws, regulations, and court orders prohibiting the shackling of young people during juvenile proceedings unless the judge makes an affirmative finding that the specific child is a danger in the courtroom or a flight risk." Information on this website includes: resources—"Model Statute / Court Rule", "Shackling Reform Statewide, Administrative Orders & Statutes" (June 2015), "Ending Universal Shackling of Children in Court—Webinar", and CAIJS Fact Sheet on Indiscriminate Juvenile Shackling; affidavits regarding indiscriminate shackling of juveniles from experts in the field; policy statements and position papers from national associations; American Bar Association Criminal Justice Section Resolution and Report to the House of Delegates.

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  • The Costs of Pretrial Justice

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    The Costs of Pretrial Justice

    This "series of briefs which explore the costs of pretrial justice and how those costs can be effectively mitigated through risk-based decision making." "The Cost of Pretrial Justice: This brief highlights costs that local stakeholders should consider when developing pretrial policies and programs, outlines some of the trade-offs policy makers face when allocating scarce resources, and points to the need to apply cost-benefit analysis to pretrial decision making." "Pretrial Justice: Costs and Benefits for Local Government: This brief explains how cost-benefit analysis can be applied to the pretrial justice system and describes the process through which CJI and its partners identified the key components of a pretrial cost-benefit model for use by local jurisdictions." "A Cost-Benefit Model for Pretrial Justice: This brief describes the local data and collaboration that are required for pretrial cost-benefit analysis, highlights its benefits for policy and planning, and suggests questions that local jurisdictions should ask if they are considering undertaking pretrial cost-benefit analysis."

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  • Pretrial Analysis for Middlesex County, Massachusetts Technical Assistance Report and Addendum

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    Pretrial Analysis for Middlesex County, Massachusetts Technical Assistance Report and Addendum

    "This report summarizes the primary findings and recommendations from a pretrial analysis for Middlesex County, Massachusetts. Peter Koutoujian, Sheriff of Middlesex County acted on behalf of multiple justice system stakeholders in the county to request technical assistance to receive an analysis of the pretrial jail population, trend analysis and related practices. The purpose of which is to examine the possible causes of increasing numbers of pretrial defendants remaining in custody, leading to overcrowding and subsequent jail cap releases" (p. 4). Sections of this report include: Middlesex County overview; infrastructure; jail and pretrial process analysis; challenges and opportunities—coordination and collaborative decision-making, data driven decisions, risk informed, outcome measures, outcome focused, and deliberate and affirmative decisions; and seven recommendations. "This addendum to the December 2014 report is being prepared in response to questions and discussions that have occurred since its release … this new analysis does not invalidate the summary and conclusions of the original report. Specifically, the need for improved collaboration and coordination between the major stakeholders; the need to develop, maintain, and utilize system performance and outcome measures in driving policy, and the need to address case processing issues such as: risk-based versus money bail release decisions, and pretrial supervision and diversion options " (p. 2).

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  • Investigating the Impact of Pretrial Detention on Sentencing Outcomes

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    Investigating the Impact of Pretrial Detention on Sentencing Outcomes

    "Each time a person is arrested and accused of a crime, a decision must be made as to whether the accused person, known as the defendant, will be detained in jail awaiting trial or will be released back into the community. But pretrial detention is not simply an either-or proposition; many defendants are held for a number of days before being released at some point before their trial. The release-and-detention decision takes into account a number of different concerns, including protecting the community, the need for defendants to appear in court, and upholding the legal and constitutional rights afforded to accused persons awaiting trial. It carries enormous consequences not only for the defendant but also for the safety of the community" (p. 3). This study examines the relationship between pretrial detention and sentencing. Sections following an executive summary include: introduction; sample description; and findings for eight research questions regarding the relations between pretrial detention and sentencing. Defendants who are detained for the entire pretrial period are three times more likely to be sentenced to jail or prison and to receive longer jail and prison sentences.

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  • American Prisons Are Not a Revolving Door: Most Released Offenders Never Return

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    American Prisons Are Not a Revolving Door: Most Released Offenders Never Return

    "The dominant narrative around recidivism in America is that most released offenders go on to reoffend and return to prison. In new research, William Rhodes argues that this impression is wrong and that two out of every three released offenders never return to prison. He argues that previous estimates about recidivism have failed to take into account the overrepresentation of returnees in prisons. Accounting for this factor, he finds that only 11 percent of offenders return to prison more than once, and that the total time that offenders actually spend in prison is overestimated as well." This article is based on "Following Incarceration, Most Released Offenders Never Return to Prison", from the journal Crime & Delinquency (published online before print September 29, 2014).

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  • County Jails at a Crossroads: An Examination of the Jail Population and Pretrial Release

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    County Jails at a Crossroads: An Examination of the Jail Population and Pretrial Release

    <p>"This study is the first to examine the participation of county jails in pretrial release. The report identifies the pretrial status and risk level of the county jail population and variations across counties of different population sizes. Further, this research analyzes the challenges that county jails face with their pretrial and overall jail population. The study details to what extent county jails use community based programs to release pretrial detainees from confinement in jail and supervise them in the community. In addition, the research examines the presence of other county policies and practices that may result in the release of the pretrial population from jail. This report provides a first step in understanding the role of counties in pretrial release" (p. 7). Sections following an executive summary include: introduction; key terms; Finding 1—the majority of the jail population is pretrial and low risk; Finding 2—counties are caught between courts' decision-making and increases in the jail population and jail costs; Finding 3—some county jails supervise pretrial detainees outside of confinement; and conclusion.</p>&#13;

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  • Alabama’s Justice Reinvestment Approach

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    Alabama’s Justice Reinvestment Approach

    "Faced with the most crowded prison system in the nation and overwhelmed probation and parole systems, state leaders in Alabama pursued justice reinvestment. After extensive analyses identified key challenges in the state’s criminal justice system, policymakers developed a policy framework designed to reduce prison overcrowding and strengthen community-based supervision. Justice reinvestment legislation was enacted in May 2015 and is projected to avert $380 million in construction and operations cost by FY2021." Sections of this brief include: overview; summary of justice reinvestment process—challenge, findings, and solutions; summary of SB 67 policies to strengthen community-based supervision and to reduce recidivism, prioritize prison space for violent and dangerous offenders, and ensure supervision for everyone upon release from prison, and expand victim notification; looking ahead; sustainability policies; and "Projected Impact of SB 67 on Alabama's Prison population" chart.

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  • Franklin County, Ohio: A County Justice and Behavioral Health Systems Improvement Project

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    Franklin County, Ohio: A County Justice and Behavioral Health Systems Improvement Project

    "An extensive data analysis coupled with over 50 in-person interviews with local and state leaders led to the identification of key recommendations for reducing the number of people with behavioral health disorders cycling in and out of jail." Sections of this report include: background; summary of core challenges; funding for behavioral health treatment and services; "Franklin County, OH Criminal System Flow" chart; methodology; sources of data for the analysis chart; assessing behavioral health disorders and risk of recidivism in the jail population; measuring the population of homelessness; findings—more than half of all adults entering jail return within three years of release, information on risk and needs is not systematically collected and used to inform decision making, people who have behavioral health disorders stay longer in jail and return more frequently than those without behavioral health disorders, and many people with behavioral health disorders released from jail are not receiving the treatment and supports they need in the community; average length of stay in jail for people with behavioral health disorders chart; percentage of people with behavioral health disorders rebooked within three years of release chart; and eight recommendations.

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  • Justice Reinvestment in Kansas: Strengthening Probation Supervision and Promoting Successful Reentry

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    Justice Reinvestment in Kansas: Strengthening Probation Supervision and Promoting Successful Reentry

    This report describes efforts of Kansas to implement justice reinvestment—"a data-driven approach designed to reduce corrections spending and reinvest savings in strategies that can reduce recidivism and improve public safety". Kansas's justice reinvestment policy framework "designed to strengthen community-based supervision, promote successful reentry, and target scare resources more effectively" and legislation created to support this framework are reviewed (p. 1). Sections contained in this brief include: background; key public safety provisions in HB 2170; developing policy solutions—legislation (HB2170) and its projected impact; looking ahead—addressing expected prison overcrowding; "Actual and Estimated Impact of HB 2170 on Kansas's Prison Population" graph; and "Summary of Full Projected Impact, Savings, and Recommended Reinvestment" table. HB2170 is projected to reduce prison operating costs by $56 million and construction costs by $25 million for the period of FY2014 through FY2018.

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  • Nebraska’s Justice Reinvestment Approach: Reduce Prison Overcrowding and Expanding Probation and Parole Supervision

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    Nebraska’s Justice Reinvestment Approach: Reduce Prison Overcrowding and Expanding Probation and Parole Supervision

    "Faced with a prison system at 159 percent of capacity and expected to grow to 170 percent of capacity by FY2020, state leaders in Nebraska pursued justice reinvestment. After extensive analyses identified key challenges in the state’s criminal justice system, policymakers developed a policy framework designed to reduce prison overcrowding and expand the use of probation and parole supervision. Justice reinvestment legislation was enacted in May 2015 and is projected to avert $306 million in construction and operations costs by FY2020." Sections of this brief include: overview; summary of the justice reinvestment process—challenge, findings, and solutions; summary of LB 605policies to use probation rather than incarceration for people convicted of low-level offenses, and increase penalty thresholds for property offenses, enhance felony classifications, ensure post-release supervision for most people upon release from prison, and address victims' needs, and improve parole supervision to reduce recidivism; looking ahead; sustainability policies in LB 605; and "Projected Impact of LB 605 on Nebraska's Prison Population" chart.

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  • United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners (the Mandela Rules)

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    United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners (the Mandela Rules)

    "The following rules are not intended to describe in detail a model system of penal institutions. They seek only, on the basis of the general consensus of contemporary thought and the essential elements of the most adequate systems of today, to set out what is generally accepted as being good principles and practice in the treatment of prisoners and prison management" (p. 8). These standards are divided into two parts. Part I--Rules of General Application: five basic principles; prisoner file management; separation of prisoner categories; accommodation; personal hygiene; clothing and bedding; food; exercise and sport; health-care services; restrictions, discipline, and sanctions; instruments of restraint; searches of prisoners and cells; information to and complaints by prisoners; contact with the outside world; books; religion; retention of prisoners' property; notifications of prisoner injury, death, or serious illness; investigations; removal of prisoners from an institution; institutional personnel; and internal and external inspections. Part II—Rules Applicable to Special Categories: prisoners under sentence—five guiding principles specifically for prisons, treatment, classification and individualization, privileges, work, education and recreation, and social relations and aftercare; prisoners with mental disabilities and/or health conditions; prisoners under arrest or awaiting trial; and civil prisoners (non-criminal charges).

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  • Callous and Cruel: Use of Force against Inmates with Mental Disabilities in US Jails and Prisons

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    Callous and Cruel: Use of Force against Inmates with Mental Disabilities in US Jails and Prisons

    "It is well known that US prisons and jails have taken on the role of mental health facilities. This new role for them reflects, to a great extent, the limited availability of community-based outpatient and residential mental health programs and resources, and the lack of alternatives to incarceration for men and women with mental disabilities who have engaged in minor offenses … persons with mental disabilities who are behind bars are at heightened risk of physical mistreatment by staff. This report is the first examination of the use of force against inmates with mental disabilities in jails and prisons across the United States. It identifies policies and practices that lead to unwarranted force and includes recommendations for changes to end it" (p. 2). This report includes these sections: summary; key recommendations; background—disproportionate representation of individuals with mental disabilities in U.S. jails and prisons; life behind bars for persons with mental disabilities; the case of Jermaine Padilla; approaches to use of force; types of force used and their harms for prisoners with mental disabilities; retaliatory and gratuitous use of force; applicable constitutional and international human rights law; and detailed recommendations.

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  • Re-Examining Juvenile Incarceration

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    Re-Examining Juvenile Incarceration

    "A growing body of research demonstrates that for many juvenile offenders, lengthy out-of-home placements in secure corrections or other residential facilities fail to produce better outcomes than alternative sanctions. In certain instances, they can be counterproductive. Seeking to reduce recidivism and achieve better returns on their juvenile justice spending, several states have recently enacted laws that limit which youth can be committed to these facilities and moderates the length of time they can spend there. These changes prioritize the use of costly facilities and intensive programming for serious offenders who present a higher risk of reoffending, while supporting effective community-based programs for others" (p.1). Sections of this brief include: overview; out-of-home placements do not improve outcomes for most youth; most Ohio youth supervised in the community have lower recidivism rates; evidence does not support longer lengths of stay; longer stays do not yield consistent reductions in juvenile recidivism; high cost to taxpayers, poor return on investment; daily costs at secure juvenile facilities exceed those of other common sanctions; voters prioritize rehabilitation and recidivism reduction; votes care less about whether or how long juvenile offenders are incarcerated than about preventing crime; and states put research into action—limiting out-of-home placements, and moderating length of stay.

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