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Probation

"This survey asked if probation was an executive or judicial branch function for adult and juvenile cases. Forty-five states and the District of Columbia indicated that juvenile probation is a function of the judicial branch." This collection is comprised of three documents: "Branch Responsible for Probation"—whether probation is a function of Executive, Judicial, or a variation; "Level of Government Responsible for Probation"--whether probation operates at the state- or county-level; and "Relationship Between Court and Probation"—whether local trial court and local probation or community corrections agency work together as institutions or work independently depending on the judge's inclinations. Aggregate results for each responding state are provided for juvenile cases, adult misdemeanor cases, and adult felony cases. This data is clearly compared through bar charts.

CCJ and COSCA Survey of Evidence-Based Practices in Sentencing & Probation Findings Cover

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 correctional practices and the effectiveness of the IBIS [Integrated Behavioral Intervention Strategies] skills … these changes represent an attitudinal change on the part of the POs who were participating in the training.”

Changing Probation Officer Attitudes: Training Experience, Motivation, and Knowledge Cover

The legal liabilities that probation and parole officers face as they perform their duties are explained. Chapters comprising this publication are: an overview of state and federal legal liabilities; civil liability under state law—state tort cases; civil liability under federal law—Section 1983 cases; legal representation, attorneys’ fees, and indemnification; presentence and preparole investigations and reports; supervision; conditions, modifications, and changes in status; revocation; emerging trends concerning liability of probation and parole officers for supervisors; vicarious liability; direct liability for supervisors; agency liability for acts of supervisors; the nature of inmates’ rights; inmates’ rights at parole release hearings; liability of parole officers for crimes committed by released offenders; immunity for parole board officials; and questions, specific concerns, and general advice.

Civil Liabilities and Other Legal Issues for Probation/Parole Officers and Supervisors: 4th Edition Cover

The National Institute of Corrections (NIC) Community Corrections Collaborative Network (CCCN)—a network representing community corrections professionals—commissioned a position paper to explore the successes and challenges facing the community corrections field. The position paper, "Community Corrections Collaborative Network: Safe and Smart Ways To Solve America’s Correctional Challenges", finds that community corrections is a critical part of the public safety system that supervises individuals under the legal authority in the community to reduce crime and victimization" (p. i). Seven chapters comprise this publication: the five core domains of community corrections—probation, parole, pretrial services, diversion programs, and community treatment; reducing reoffending, recidivism, and victimization in your community—targeting risk, need, and responsivity of the people we supervise; community corrections—changing lives, reducing harm, and helping to build your community; community corrections--a more central role in how the corrections system will manage its resources and overall approach; community corrections has strong public support; helping to solve the nation's public safety and correctional challenges; and what community corrections needs from the field and its partners to meet the public safety and corrections challenges. "Community corrections is changing lives, reducing harm, and helping build communities, and it has strong public support. To succeed in the future, community corrections and its partners need to refocus resources on approaches that are proven to work; change laws, policies, and practices that do not work; target treatment and supervision only to those who need it; and reallocate resources appropriately. Also to succeed in the future, community corrections and its partners need to expand the capacity of the field to take on new challenges and designate resources appropriately" (p. i).

Community Corrections Collaborative Network: Safe and Smart Ways to Solve America's Correctional Challenges Cover

The Community Services Division coordinates technical assistance, specialized training, and other programs related to probation, parole, and other forms of community-based corrections.

The Division also sponsors the development of publications and materials on topics of interest to community corrections practitioners, and it coordinates an interdisciplinary effort to assist jurisdictions in developing a more rational, cost-effective, and coordinated system of criminal justice sanctions and punishments.

Technical assistance related to Community Corrections is provided on issues such as caseload management, victims programs, employee safety, classification and assessment, and intermediate sanctions. The Division also provides specialized training and other programs that focus on: Executive Leadership and Development; Women Offenders; Evidence-Based Offender Interventions; Inmate Transition to Communities; Workforce Development; and Responding to Probation/Parole Violations.

Division Chief: Holly Busby

This is a good overview of the problems inherent in private probation. Sections cover: the controversy—probation for profit; litigation against private probation companies; and performance problems reported.

Controversy, Litigation and Performance Problems Plague Private Probation Services Cover

"This report presents "statistics on persons supervised by adult correctional systems in the United States at yearend 2014, including offenders supervised in the community on probation or parole and those incarcerated in state or federal prison or local jail. The report describes the size and change in the total correctional population during 2014. It details the downward trend in the correctional population and correctional supervision rate since 2007. It also examines the impact of changes in the community supervision and incarcerated populations on the total correctional population in recent years. Findings cover the variation in the size and composition of the total correctional population by jurisdiction at yearend 2014. Appendix tables provide statistics on other correctional populations and jurisdiction-level estimates of the total correctional population by correctional status and sex for select years. Highlights: Adult correctional systems supervised an estimated 6,851,000 persons at yearend 2014, about 52,200 fewer offenders than at yearend 2013; About 1 in 36 adults (or 2.8% of adults in the United States) was under some form of correctional supervision at yearend 2014, the lowest rate since 1996; The correctional population has declined by an annual average of 1.0% since 2007; The community supervision population (down 1.0%) continued to decline during 2014, accounting for all of the decrease in the correctional population; [and] The incarcerated population (up 1,900) slightly increased during 2014."

Correctional Populations In The United States, 2014 cover

"This dynamic analysis tool allows you to examine data collected by the Annual Probation Survey on adult probationers. It includes all adults, regardless of conviction status, who have been placed under the supervision of a probation agency as part of a court order. (Adults are persons subject to the jurisdiction of an adult court or correctional agency.) You can create Custom Tables of the number on adults on probation at yearend. This tool also allows you to create custom tables of probation entries and exits." Access is provided to: User's Manual; quick tables; custom tables; methodology; definitions; supporting documents; and FAQs.

Corrections Statistical Analysis Tool (CSAT)—Probation Cover

This brief "discusses an effort in Texas to divert youth with suspected mental health needs away from juvenile justice processing. The Front-End Diversion Initiative (FEDI) uses specialized juvenile probation officers to link these youth and their families to community services and divert these youth from adjudication within the juvenile justice system." Sections cover: FEDI introduction; the issue of juvenile offenders' mental health challenges; juvenile justice processing of youth with mental health needs; the role of the juvenile probation officer and specialized supervision; the innovation of using Specialized Juvenile Probation Officer (SJPOs) as a pre-adjudication diversion strategy; the FEDI model; results and lessons learned; and looking forward. It appears that those youth participating in FEDI were significantly less likely to be adjudicated than those youth who were under traditional supervision.

Diverting Youth Cover

This is a great introduction to a new probation strategy which links “the duration of probation supervision to the optimal amount of intervention an offender needs in order to reduce risk of reoffense”. This monograph “provides a policy and practice framework upon which this new model of supervision can be constructed. It offers a review of evidence-based approaches to reducing recidivism in our communities, the most recent research on dosage, and its applicability to sentencing and community supervision practices. It describes the model’s promise for increasing community safety through recidivism reduction, as well as achieving fiscal savings by reducing periods of supervision. Finally, the monograph offers a summary of the work of Milwaukee County’s criminal justice stakeholders as they design and conduct the nation’s first dosage probation experiment.” Sections of this publication include: introduction to the dosage model of probation; the principles of effective intervention—who we target for intervention matters (the risk principle), what we target for intervention matters (the need principle), how we intervene and interact matters (the responsivity principle), how well interventions are implemented matters, fidelity and integrity of corrections professionals’ interventions, and the relationship between early termination of supervision and recidivism; adding dosage to the equation—how much dosage is delivered matters, and further study needed; implications—the dosage probation model of supervision; and dosage probation in Milwaukee County.

Dosage Probation: Rethinking the Structure of Probation Sentences Cover

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