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The Foundation and Practical Application of Risk, Need, and Responsivity in the Age of COVID-19 and Urgent Justice Reform

illustrated, a webinar with a diverse set of people on the screen

APPA Virtual Conference Session*

Risk and need assessments have been administered in the criminal justice system for decades but often have not influenced professional decision-making in appropriate ways. Although intended to improve outcomes by matching individuals to indicated services, information derived from these tools has often been ignored or misapplied to increase incarceration rates and unfair racial and ethnic disparities. For example, persons classified as high risk may be more likely to be detained pretrial or to receive a jail or prison sentence, when almost no tools have been developed or validated for this purpose. Most commonly used tools were created to set community-based conditions of treatment and supervision in lieu of detention. Especially in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic and urgent need for criminal justice reform, practitioners and policy makers must understand what RNR is and how it should be applied correctly to enhance both public health and public safety.

Training/Learning Objectives:

  • Brief overview of the criminal justice system and the importance of effective reentry practices;
  • Understand how common fallacies and misunderstandings about risk-need-responsivity (R-N-R) principles have contributed to unwarranted reliance on incarceration and racial and ethnic disparities. Learn how proper use of RNR can reduce unfair disparities, enhance criminal justice outcomes, and lead the way to effective and equitable justice reform;
  • Demonstrate a practical application of the principles using reintegrating individuals within Multnomah County; and
  • Describe strategies to create and maintain collaborative relationships to achieve reentry goals.

*APPA Virtual Conference Sessions are only available for conference attendees.

Event Date: 
Thursday 27th August at 4:30pm - Thursday 27th August at 6:00pm
Greg Crawford