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Christensen, Gary

"This document will review the role of jails and incarceration within United States' correctional systems and propose opportunities for jail officials to interact and collaborate with local criminal justice entities with the shared purpose of enhancing long-term public safety" (p. ix). Sections following an abstract include: practice within corrections -- does it work as a system; corrections within the U.S. -- the current context; evidence-based practice -- the effectiveness of criminal sanctions; communicating within a social learning environment; offender classification -- to jail or not to jail; the work of jails -- high-risk offenders and their effect on public safety; organizational/system change -- the role of correctional leadership; high-risk offenders in jail transition programs; and conclusion/summary. Appendixes include: "An Example of a Successful Jail Transition Program: The Dutchess County Jail Transition Program [DCJTP]"; DCJTP 5-Week Plan -- Checklist; and DCJTP Plan for Transition form.

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“Consistent with effective correctional practice, jails and their community partners should identify risk levels and criminogenic needs of returning [offender] populations and should focus their resources on individuals with the highest levels of both … This brief presents the two-stage screening and assessment process to determine risk and needs levels that is a core element of the Transition from Jail to Community (TJC) model” (p. 1). Sections of this publication include: the TJC initiative; risk and need in a triage approach; risk screening—selecting a screening instrument, administering risk screening, norming and validating the screening instrument, and using screening data; TJC screening principles; proxy triage risk screener; key implementation lessons learned—screening to determine risk of offending and assessment of criminogenic need; TJC assessment principles; assessment of criminogenic need--selecting an assessment instrument, administering assessment, and using assessment information; key implementation lessons learned—assessment of criminogenic risk/need; and lessons learned from the TJC site implementation.

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"TJC [Transition from Jail to Community] represents an integrated approach spanning organizational boundaries to deliver needed information, services, and case management to people released from jail. Boundary-spanning collaborative partnerships are necessary because transition from jail to the community is neither the sole responsibility of the jail nor of the community. Accordingly, effective transition strategies rely on collaboration among jail- and community-based partners and joint ownership of the problems associated with jail transition and their solutions. The TJC model includes the components necessary to carry out systems change to facilitate successful transition from jail, and it is intended be sufficiently adaptable that it can be implemented in any of the 2,860 jail jurisdictions in the United States … despite how greatly they vary in terms of size, resources, and priorities … One of NIC’s goals for Phase 2 of the TJC Initiative was to enhance the TJC model and approach to pay greater attention to pretrial practices … Findings from the Phase 2 process and systems change evaluation are provided in individual site-specific case study reports that focus on how TJC implementation unfolded in the specific context of each participating jurisdiction … While the TJC Model provides a common framework for TJC work, site priorities, preexisting collaborative relationships, capacity to carry out reentry activities (and where that capacity resides), and site starting points condition how TJC proceeds. However, common themes emerged across the Phase 2 sites, as well as insight into why greater progress was realized in some places more than others. The purpose of this brief is to summarize these themes and relevant information about the sites’ implementation experiences—what worked well, what was notable, and what was challenging (p. 3, 5-6, Phase 2 Summary).

Seven reports comprise the Transition from Jail to Community (TJC) Initiative Phase 2 Site Reports series:

Phase 2 Summary Implementation Findings by Jesse Jannetta, Janeen Buck Willison, and Emma Kurs has these sections: glossary; site implementation themes—leadership and collaboration; targeted intervention strategies; self-evaluation and sustainability; and lessons for changing systems.

Implementation Success and Challenges in Ada County, Idaho by Shebani Rao, Kevin Warwick, Gary Christensen, and Colleen Owens;
Implementation Success and Challenges in Franklin County, Massachusetts by Willison, Warwick, and Rao; Implementation Success and Challenges in Fresno County, California by Jannetta, Rao, Owens, and Christensen; Implementation Success and Challenges in Hennepin County, Minnesota by Willison, Warwick, and Kurs; Implementation Success and Challenges in Howard County, Maryland by Jannetta, Kurs, and Owens; and Implementation Success and Challenges in Jacksonville, Florida by Willison, Warwick, Kurs, and Christensen.

Each of the above six Site Reports contain these sections ; glossary; introduction; TJC structure, leadership, and collaboration; targeted intervention strategies; self-evaluation and sustainability; and conclusion.

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