“The significant challenges faced by those leaving jail and the high price of continued offending underscore the importance of capitalizing on jail contact to link individuals with services both while in the jail and as they return to the community. However, providing supportive interventions in jail settings is extremely challenging. While a number of innovative practices exist, there is much progress to be made in the design of services that can support people as they leave jail and return home” (p. 5). The effectiveness of the Los Angeles County Jail to provide reentry services to individuals being released is evaluated. Other jails can find valuable suggestions for improving their own jail reentry services by reading this report. Sections of the technical report include: executive summary; introduction; profiles of interviewees in jail custody; reentry service delivery and engagement including the Community Transition Unit (CTU); operations and efficiency; coordination between the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department (LASD) and other agencies and organizations; and conclusion. Some of the 11 recommendations to maximize the efficiency of reentry services provided by the jail are: expand awareness of the CTU to potential clients; integrate risks and needs assessments into reentry services; individualize reentry service plans; and strengthen the ties between the jail and community-based providers. You can download the technical report, summary report, and/or fact sheet at this website.
“As the size and cost of jails and prisons have grown, so too has the awareness that public investment in incarceration has not yielded the expected return on public safety. Today, in the United States, an opportunity exists to reexamine the wisdom of our reliance on institutional corrections—incarceration in prisons or jails—and to reconsider the role of community-based corrections, which encompasses probation, parole, and pretrial supervision … States and counties are moving to shift the burden from institutional to community corrections, sending greater numbers of offenders to supervision agencies with heightened expectations of success but often without the additional resources necessary to do the job that is being asked of them … There is considerable variability within and across states in the way community corrections is organized and financed. Agency responsibilities and accountability also differ” (p. 2). Since this report explains what the current state of and emerging strategies for community corrections, anyone working to strengthen the field or seeking to understand the potential of community corrections to reduce the recidivism of offenders should read this report. Sections cover: what community corrections is; its current state; emerging best practices; current practices that need more research; recent policy changes in community corrections; and moving forward—recommendations to the field.