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Date Title Type
Document 032859
Myths & Facts - Using Risk and Need Assessments to Enhance Outcomes and Reduce Disparities in the Criminal Justice System
Community Corrections Collaborative Network (CCCN) (Washington, DC); National Institute of Corrections (NIC) (Washington, DC).
The Community Corrections Collaborative Network (CCCN) is a network comprised of the leading associations representing 90,000-plus probation, parole, pretrial, and treatment professionals around the country, including the American Probation and Parole Association (APPA), the Association of Paroling Authorities International (APAI), the Federal Probation and Pretrial Officers Association (FPPOA), the International Community Corrections Association (ICCA), the National Association of Drug Court Pr... Read More

1 page + 16 pages
Document 032714
Risk, Race, & Recidivism: Predictive Bias and Disparate Impact
By Skeem, Jennifer L., Lowenkamp, Christopher T..
One way to unwind mass incarceration without compromising public safety is to use risk assessment instruments in sentencing and corrections. Although these instruments figure prominently in current reforms, critics argue that benefits in crime control will be offset by an adverse effect on racial minorities … we examine the relationships among race, risk assessment (the Post Conviction Risk Assessment [PCRA]), and future arrest. ... Read More

55 pages
Document 029746
Black Girls Matter: Pushed Out, Overpoliced and Underprotected
By Crenshaw, Kimberle Williams; Ocen, Priscilla; Nanda, Jyoti. Schott Foundation for Public Education (Cambridge, MA). African American Policy Forum (AAPF) (New York, NY); Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies (CISPS) (New York, NY).
This is by far the best resource for information regarding the plight of Black girls in the juvenile justice system. "For girls, as with boys, the failure to receive a high school diploma often places individuals on a pathway to low-wage work, unemployment, and incarceration. The imposition of harsh disciplinary policies in public schools is a well-known risk factor for stunted educational opportunities for Black and Latino boys. Such punishments also negatively affect their female counterpart... Read More
57 pages
Document 029748
Black Lives Matter: Eliminating Racial Inequality in the Criminal Justice System
By Ghandnoosh, Nazgol. The Sentencing Project (Washington, DC).
"The criminal justice system’s high volume of contact with people of color is a major cause of African Americans’ disproportionate rate of fatal police encounters, as well as of broader perceptions of injustice in many communities. This briefing paper identifies four key features of the justice system that contribute to its disparate racial impact, and presents recent best practices for targeting these inequities drawn from adult and juvenile justice systems around the country. In many cases, th... Read More
36 pages
Document 029611
Incorporating Racial Equality Into Criminal Justice Reform
By Mauer, Marc; Ghandnoosh, Nazgol. John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation (Chicago, IL). The Sentencing Project (Washington, DC).
"There are few areas of American society where racial disparities are as profound and as troubling as in the criminal justice system. In fact, racial perceptions of crime and race influenced policy development have been intimately tied to the development of mass incarceration. Yet there is growing evidence that the high rate of minority imprisonment is excessive for public safety goals and damaging for family and community structures in high incarceration neighborhoods. This briefing paper provi... Read More
22 pages
Document 028351
Tracking State Prison Growth in 50 States
By Wagner, Peter. Prison Policy Initiative (PPI) (Northampton, MA).
If you are looking for an excellent primer on the use of incarceration in the United States, you need to read this. "Over the last three decades of the 20th century, the United States engaged in an unprecedented prison-building boom that has given our nation the highest incarceration rate in the world. Among people with experience in criminal justice policy matters, the “hockey stick curve” of the national incarceration rate is well known; but until now more detailed data on the incarceration ra... Read More
Document 028233
Breaking Down Mass Incarceration in the 2010 Census: State-by-State Incarceration Rates by Race/Ethnicity
By Sakala, Leah. Prison Policy Initiative (PPI) (Washington, DC).
"Social science research has time and again come to the robust conclusion that exposure to the criminal justice system has profound and intergenerational negative effects on communities that experience disproportionate incarceration rates. It is imperative that we are able to measure the extent to which the criminal justice system disparately impacts our communities." You can find this information easily by referring to this briefing. It does an excellent job in synthesizing the information that... Read More
Document 028103
Disproportionate Minority Contact and Status Offenses
Coalition for Juvenile Justice (CJJ). SOS Project (Washington, DC).
This report looks at the significant overrepresentation of minority youth among juvenile status offenders. Sections of this publication includes: issue background; the need to focus on non-delinquent youth; addressing disproportionality among status offenders; new data on status offenses and disproportionality; and implications for juvenile justice reform. ... Read More
5 pages
Document 028363
Race and Punishment: Racial Perceptions of Crime and Support for Punitive Policies
By Ghandnoosh, Nazgol; Lewis, Christopher. The Sentencing Project (Washington, DC).
"To guide and give greater momentum to recent calls for reform, this report examines a key driving force of criminal justice outcomes: racial perceptions of crime. A complex set of factors contributes to the severity and selectivity of punishment in the United States, including public concern about crime and racial differences in crime rates. This report synthesizes two decades of research establishing that skewed racial perceptions of crime – particularly, white Americans’ strong associations o... Read More
44 pages
Document 028411
Disproportionate Minority Contact in the Juvenile Justice System
By Rovner, Joshua. The Sentencing Project (Washington, DC).
"Despite positive trends regarding juvenile interactions with the justice system, racial disparities remain as a persistent problem. African-American youth comprise 17 percent of the population, but comprise 31 percent of all arrested youth. This briefing paper explains how disproportionate minority contact (DMC) with the juvenile justice system is measured and takes a close look at drug offenses, property crimes, and status offenses. Racial disparities weaken the credibility of a justice system... Read More
10 pages
Document 028456
Examining Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Probation Revocation: Summary Findings and Implications from a Multisite Study
By Jannetta, Jesse; Breaux, Justin; Ho, Helen; Porter, Jeremy. Urban Institute (New York, NY).
"Racial and ethnic disparity is pervasive in the American criminal justice system. This is particularly stark for blacks, who despite constituting just 13 percent of the US population, account for 30 percent of adult probationers, 37 percent of jail inmates, 38 percent of prisoners, and 40 percent of parolees. Such disparities have broad consequences, from impacts on the health and functioning of minority communities to perceptions of the legitimacy of the criminal justice system. There are more... Read More
15 pages
Document 028462
Race and Punishment: Racial Perceptions of Crime and Support for Punitive Policies
By Ghandnoosh, Nazgol; Lewis, Christopher. The Sentencing Project (Washington, DC).
"To guide and give greater momentum to recent calls for reform, this report examines a key driving force of criminal justice outcomes: racial perceptions of crime. A complex set of factors contributes to the severity and selectivity of punishment in the United States, including public concern about crime and racial differences in crime rates. This report synthesizes two decades of research establishing that skewed racial perceptions of crime – particularly, white Americans’ strong associations o... Read More
44 pages
Document 027085
The Changing Racial Dynamics of Women’s Incarceration
By Mauer, Marc. The Sentencing Project (Washington, DC).
“Scholars are beginning to analyze the relative contributions of changes in crime rates, criminal justice policies, economics, and demographics to the slowing growth rate of the prison system, but one area that has gone largely unexplored is the impact of such changes on racial disparities in imprisonment. As is well known, black/white disparities in the use of incarceration have been profound for quite some time. Since the 1980s a series of analyses have documented these trends at the national ... Read More
26 pages
Document 027291
An Impact Evaluation of Three Strategies Created to Reduce Disproportionate Minority Contact and the Detention Population: Final Report
By Rodriguez, Nancy; Eells, Elizabeth. U.S. Dept. of Justice. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) (Washington, DC).
“The goal of this project was to examine the effectiveness of three distinct strategies (revision of a detention index, a procedural change in review of detention decisions, and a monitoring system of detained youth) created by Maricopa County Juvenile Probation to reduce disproportionate minority contact (DMC) and the number of youth subject to detention in the County” (p. i). It appears that a combination of the three is the most effective way to reduce sentencing disparity and juvenile detent... Read More
47 pages
Document 027621
Criminal Justice in the 21st Century: Eliminating Racial and Ethnic Disparities in the Criminal Justice System
By Tanya E. Coke. National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) Washington, DC).
“The conference assembled a distinguished group of criminal justice experts … to identify critical points of intervention and concrete, practical reforms to redress racial disproportionality at every stage of criminal proceedings. Rather than belabor what has gone wrong or has not worked, participants shared innovative disparity-reduction practices from around the country, as well as new ideas for reforming policies that produce mass incarceration (p. 7). Ten sections are contained in this publi... Read More
44 pages
Document 027620
Bending the Curve: Juvenile Corrections Reform in Texas
By Laudano, Jennifer. Pew Charitable Funds. Pew Center on the States. Public Safety Performance Project (Washington, DC).
“During the past six years, Texas overhauled its juvenile corrections system, enacting a series of reforms that led to a significant reduction in the state-level committed population and yielded millions of dollars in cost savings while protecting public safety” (p. 1). Sections of this brief cover: problem; reforms—authorizing legislation, redirected resources, incentive funding, standardized tools, and streamlines system; and impact—commitments down, costs reduced $50 million per year, and pub... Read More
7 pages
Document 027671
Report of The Sentencing Project to the United Nations Human Rights Committee: Regarding Racial Disparities in the United States Criminal Justice System
On-site use only. The Sentencing Project (Washington, DC).
“This report chronicles the racial disparity that permeates every stage of the United States criminal justice system, from arrest to trial to sentencing. In particular, the report highlights the influence of implicit racial bias and recounts the findings of the burgeoning scholarship on the role of such bias in the criminal justice system” (p. 2). Sections cover: racial disparity in police activity; racial disparity in trials—indigent defense counsel, prosecution, and juries, trial judges, and p... Read More
30 pages
Document 027677
Changing Probation Officer Attitudes: Training Experience, Motivation, and Knowledge
By Lowencamp, Christopher T.; Holsinger, Alexander M.; Flores, Anthony W.; Koutsenok, Igor; Pearl, Natalie.
The impact of evidence-based training on the level of probation officers’ (POs) knowledge of “what works” in effective interventions and also on the POs’ attitudes about providing better service are examined. This study shows that “the training had an immediate effect on several indicators regarding knowledge of evidence-based correctional practices, belief in self-efficacy regarding offender change (on the part of probation officers), and an increasing awareness of the importance of core correc... Read More
16 pages
Document 028047
“Give Us Free”: Addressing Racial Disparities in Bail Determinations
By Jones, Cynthia E..
“This article considers racial disparities that occur nationally in the bail determination process, due in large part to the lack of uniformity, resources, and information provided to officials in bail proceedings. It argues that the almost unbridled decision making power afforded to bail officials is often influenced by improper considerations such as the defendant’s financial resources or the race of the defendant. As a result of these failures, the bail determination process has resulted not ... Read More
44 pages
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