Case planning: It’s an art. It’s a science. It’s a tough job. Pulling together a plan that sets the right goals on the right timeline supported by the right programming sounds as elusive as painting the perfect crooked smile on the Mona Lisa, and in a way, it is. But with skill, experience, and supportive programming, it can be done.
You’ve implemented a risk and needs assessment. Your team is using the data to inform decision-making. Now what? To maintain the health of your agency’s evidence-based practice and find out how effective your efforts are at reducing recidivism, your assessments require assessments of their own. As soon as you have enough data, your agency needs to launch a Validation Study, and then a few years after that, an Outcomes Study.
Risk and needs assessments have come under a lot of scrutiny in the justice sector, and it’s not uncommon for our clients to get questions from their stakeholders about their use of assessments in evidence-based practice. We’ve compiled a list of the top five questions we hear and straightforward answers to help you educate others and demonstrate why assessments are helping you advance justice in your community.
Much of the pretrial reform debate centers on one key question: Should this individual be released or detained? However, the second-most important question is the most overlooked: How? How do we know our approach is working to deliver fair practices? If the individual is released, what pretrial services should they receive? If they’re detained, how should they be housed?
When used the right way, data is powerful. The data collected on your web browsing habits (probably) aren’t going to change the world, but the data you collect and use as a supervision professional can mean the difference between helping—or inadvertently harming—your community. THAT’s powerful.
Pretrial decisions can have heavy consequences. Individuals involved in the pretrial phase of the justice process are considered still-innocent of any crime, so the decisions that are made must be weighed carefully. Pretrial reform is a hot topic in our country today, and the use of a risk assessment during the pretrial phase is under great scrutiny.
When it comes to reducing recidivism, we have some specific recommendations, strategies, and tactics that have demonstrated substantial positive results for practitioners. What these strategies all have in common is they’re essential parts of evidence-based organizations.
Reducing recidivism is one of the most important things we can do as supervision professionals. It’s also one of the hardest. Part of what makes recidivism so difficult to tackle is that successes and failures happen on the individual level, but only systemic change can truly make a difference.
Pretrial practices are seeing upheaval across the country, and as many jurisdictions push for reforms, there is an abundance of information and misconception in the public eye. Ground yourself in the basics of pretrial, and learn what successful counties have in common.
Don’t just manage cases; manage your caseload. Taking in the full spectrum of your caseload and monitoring how individual cases fit into it can help you ensure you’re giving your clients the most appropriate level of supervision and resources.