Learning From SAGE Journal Articles
The following journal articles have been specially selected as extra readings and/or resources for students and instructors. Each article is organized by the chapter content to which it corresponds. The intent in including these articles is to provide additional material on special areas of research that currently exist within the literature. These articles also further demonstrate that the course text is grounded in up-to-date literature and research that impacts the field of community corrections.
Articles housed at this link will either be those which are drawn from peer-reviewed journals published by Sage or they will be documents published by the United States federal government, typically through the National Institute of Corrections. In both cases, these articles come from sources that are known to be valid in content and students can therefore rest assured that information derived from these articles will meet the required rigor expected from their professor(s).
These articles are excellent sources for term papers and other writing assignments that students may be required to complete in the completion of their coursework. It is recommended that students cite from these articles on a liberal basis. Using these articles as additional references will serve to bolster any course projects that students must complete. Further, it is likely that instructors will assign these articles as extra reading. In such cases, these articles will likely become part of the lecture (if the course is in the classroom) or they may appear as part of a threaded discussion (if the course is online). In either event, these journal articles are a resource that will augment the course experience.
Lastly, each article was specifically selected by the author due to its relevance as well as its publication date. This means that the content is appropriate and that the source is sufficiently recent. In cases where an article might be a bit dated, the author simply could find no more recent a published manuscript for that particular topic and it was determined that the information was still accurate and appropriate. Knowing that the author himself selected these articles for use with this course adds an additional sense of credibility and validity to their use since the very person who wrote the text is giving a seal of approval to their inclusion. So, with that in mind, students are encouraged to engage in these additional readings and to use their content wisely as they explore the field of community corrections.
Note: Click on each link to expand and view the content. You may click again to collapse.
Chapter 1: Definitions, History, and Development of Community Corrections
Sage Journal: Probation Journal, Vol. 47, No. 4, 243-249 (2000).
Article Description: The state of Western Australia, which has a Criminal Justice System similar in many respects to that of England and Wales, has imported and adapted the What Works orthodoxy developed in North America and the UK. Drawing on exploratory research in this region, Anne Worrall highlights the dangers of an 'international trade in penal ideas' which fails to take greater account of issues such as the loss of traditional culture and breakdown of kinship systems in Aboriginal societies.
Federal Probation Belongs with the Courts by Albert Wahl
Sage Journal: Crime & Delinquency, Vol. 12, No. 4, 371-376 (1966).
Article Description: This article traces the history of the transfer of the Federal Pro bation System from the Department of Justice to the Administra tive Office of the United States Courts, pointing out that the change was not made "by accident." Further, the charge of frag mentation in the federal correctional service implies, erroneously, a lack of coordination. Administration should be with the agency which provides the greatest flow of work; federal probation offi cers perform more than 75 per cent of their work for the courts. The development of federal probation under court administra tion is set forth, in respect to both reduced caseloads and the increased quality and number of personnel. Finally, the basic objections to having probation in the same department that di rects the prosecution are listed.
Chapter 2: Community Corrections: Public Safety Is Job One
From the Inside: The Meaning of Probation to Probationers by Brandon K. Applegate, Hayden P. Smith, Alicia H. Sitren, and Nicolette Fariello Springer
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice Review, Vol. 34, No. 1, 80-95 (2009)
Article Description: Beyond considerations of relative punitiveness, very little is known about how offenders understand the experience of serving a probation sentence. The current study surveyed offenders currently on probation to assess the extent to which they believed their sentence was rehabilitative, incapacitative, deserved, and a deterrent to future offending. Perceptions that probation served no purpose and that it represented a game of manipulation and impression management were also investigated. The results showed that most probationers believed that their sentence was a deterrent, and it was rehabilitative and deserved. They also felt that probation served multiple purposes, and a minority of respondents perceived that there was no point to being on probation. The implications of these findings are discussed.
In Favor of "Presumptive Sentences" Set by a Sentencing Commission" by Richard Singer
Sage Journal: Crime & Delinquency, Vol. 24, No. 4, 401-427 (1978)
Article Description: The debate over "just deserts" as a sentencing principle continues in this country. A common criticism of that principle is that legislatures will set unreasonably high sentences. This problem might be avoided if the re sponsibility for setting sentence guidelines were confined to a separate body-that is, a sentencing commission. Removed from the immediate po litical furor and composed of various representatives of the criminal jus tice community, as well as lay members, the sentencing commission would both establish and revise sentencing guidelines for judges on the basis of continuing collection of data.
The criticism that just deserts means unflexible, fixed sentences for ev ery offender is also misguided. The concept of the "presumptive sen tence," which will allow some flexibility for increasing or decreasing the sentence, would still permit the sentencing judge to retain a reasonable amount of (reviewable) discretion; "sentencing by computer" would not occur.
In establishing the presumptive sentence as well as sentencing guidelines, the sentencing commission would consider, but would not be bound by, information and data on what judges in the jurisdiction are currently doing. Indeed, one of the dangers is that the legislature, or some other body, might simply adopt what is being done as what should be done, a tactic that is both philosophically unjustified and pragmatically dangerous.
The second part of the article rehearses the arguments for sentencing reform and, in particular, for presumptive sentences. The fear that propo nents of commensurate deserts would remove the word rehabilitation from the prison or even the dictionary is inaccurate. They simply seek, for various reasons, to remove it from the purposes of sentencing.
Community Corrections Acts for State and Local Partnerships
Article Description: With interest in intermediate punishments high for both social and economic reasons, states are increasingly adopting community corrections legislation. Intended for citizen advocates and justice decision makers, this manual describes the correctional pressures leading towards legislative action, examines the common and divergent characteristics of state laws, discusses considerations in implementing legislation, and reviews accomplishments of such legislation. A "Compendium of Community Corrections Legislation in the United States" is appended.
Web Link: http://www.nicic.org/pubs/1992/010132.pdf
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
Chapter 3: Assessment and Risk Prediction
Assessing the Utility of Risk Assessment Tools and Personality Measures in the Prediction of Violent Recidivism for Adult Offenders
Article Description: The validity and utility of various instruments used for predicting violent risk are assessed. Sections following an executive summary are: introduction; methods and procedures; results -- description of database, predictive validities of risk measures for institutional violence and violent recidivism, comparison of effect sizes by generation of risk instrument, and comparisons based on the static versus dynamic content of the instrument, measure administration method, and instrument relevance to corrections; and discussion -- actuarial, structured, and psychopathy checklist instruments, recommendations to guide instrument selection, issues for future research and consideration, and conclusion. Valid instruments appear to be the LSI-R, LS/CMI, and the HCR-20.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
How much risk can we take? The misuse of risk assessment in corrections
Article Description: After decades of intellectual neglect, the field of corrections has decided to embrace the world of science and adhere to the dictums of "evidence-based" corrections. The term "evidence based" originates from the field of medicine as far back as the 19th century in Europe and means many things to many people. In medicine it is very important that medical procedures and the use of healing drugs and medicine actually demonstrate their effectiveness through rigorous experimental studies before they are brought to market. In the social sciences, evidence-based research suggests that governmental policies must be shaped by scientific evidence that shows the policy has some cause and effect value. For many good reasons, the field of corrections has never had to pass such a high standard. But after American corrections has set world records in the numbers of persons incarcerated and placed on probation and parole, some criminal justice professionals believe the field needs to get serious about its $60 billion a year industry and produce a better product.
SOURCE: Federal Probation, 20(2). Administrative Office of the United States Courts
Implementation of the West Virginia Offender Reentry Initiative: An Examination of Staff Attitudes and the Application of the LSI-R.
Article Description: Results of the evaluation suggest that attitudes and values of correctional staff may be having an impact on the implementation process. While most correctional staff were moderately supportive of offender reentry programs, only 4 in 10 correctional staff reported high support for the West Virginia Offender Reentry Initiative (WVORI). Nearly 3 in 10 correctional staff reported low level of support for the WVORI. However, study findings found that support for the WVORI had increased since its implementation. The findings illustrate that as correctional staff become more human service oriented and less punitive toward inmates, the results can be a greater support for programs rooted in evidence-based practices such as the WVORI. The West Virginia Department of Corrections has accomplished a great deal with the development and implementation of the WVORI. The WVORI officially began in July 2004. The WVORI is a structured program to help inmates make a satisfactory transition upon their release from incarceration. It is designed to provide a continuum of reentry services to offenders as they transition from prison to the community. The core components of the reentry initiative are the prescriptive case management system (PCMS) and the use of the Level of Service Inventory-Revised (LSI-R). The LSI-R is a standardized risk-needs assessment instrument. This report is the second in a series of research applications designed to convey the results of an ongoing process evaluation of the WVORI. The study builds on the initial research by assessing the level of change in support for the WVORI, as well as the use of the LSI-R and the newly developed PCMS. A total of 172 surveys were delivered to correctional staff assigned to each of the 12 correctional facilities in the State. Tables, graphs, and references
SOURCE: National Criminal Justice Reference Services (NCJRS).
Chapter 4: The Role of the Practitioner
Sage Journal: Probation Journal, Vol. 47, No. 4, 256-261 (2000).
Article Description: Chris Trotter discusses the practical implications of his research in Victoria, Australia, which found that social work and welfare trained probation officers were more likely to learn and make use of effective practices, which were in turn linked to significantly lower rates of re-offending.
Opening the Manager's Door: State Probation Officer Stress and Perceptions of Participation in Workplace Decision Making by Risdon N. Slate, Terry L. Wells, and W. Wesley Johnson
Sage Journal: Crime & Delinquency, Vol. 49, No. 4, 519-541 (2003)
Article Description: Stress can be costly not only to individuals but also to organizations. Participatory management has been recommended as a means for reducing probation officer stress. This article via self-report surveys of probation personnel in a southern state considers the relationship of a number of demographic variables with employee perceptions of participation in workplace decision making, job satisfaction, and organizational and physical stress levels. Construction of a structural model revealed that employee perceptions of participation in workplace decision making was an important variable in relation to job satisfaction and its influence on both reported organizational and physical symptoms of stress. The results lend further credence to the use and development of participatory management schemas within probation organizations.
Stress Among Probation and Parole Officers and What Can Be Done About It
Article Description: The impact of stress on probation and parole officers, and potentially effective stress reduction programs are addressed. Topics discussed after an executive summary are: stress and its causes; how officers cope; why create a stress reduction program?; keys to success; and case studies.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
Sage Journal: Probation Journal, Vol. 55, No. 2, 139-152 (2008)
Article Description: The term vicarious or secondary trauma describes the negative impact on professionals' emotions resulting from painful experiences in their practice. This study of practitioners involved in UK probation programmes for domestic violence perpetrators suggests that the emotional consequences are considerable and may differ for male and female practitioners, with potential implications for the nature of their relationships and intervention with men on such programmes. The study also concludes that current training is based on a knowledge base which may be outmoded, and that ongoing support from management and colleagues for staff engaged in this work is insufficient and may be preoccupied with managerial concerns to the neglect of professional practice.
Chapter 5: Legal Liabilities and Risk Management
Supervising Persons wsith AIDS: A New Liability for Probation and Parole Officers by Janice M. Lowenberg
Sage Journal: Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice, Vol. 4, No. 2, 119-124 (1988) DOI: 10.1177/104398628800400206
Article Description: Probation and parole officers are obligated in their duty to warn specific third parties of a probationer who is a prospective source of harm, or physical or financial risk to them or to the community. However, with the arrival of the deadly AIDS disease, probation and parole officers are faced with a new issue of third party risk and the protection of the public. Various key issues are raised within this article pertaining to the legal authority to disclose information on the AIDS carrier, the enforcement of disclosure of information, and to whom the information should be disclosed.
Various states have adopted laws on disclosure of medical information while legislators are continuously attempting to control and set policies that would protect both the public from AIDS infection and the AIDS carriers themselves from discrimination. Until firm policies and conditions are established, seven general rules have been offered for probation and parole officers to follow in order to avoid lawsuits.
Standards in the Privatization of Probation Services: A Statutory Analysis by Christine S. Schloss and Leanne F. Alarid
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice Review, Vol. 32, No. 3, 233-245 (2007) DOI: 10.1177/0734016807304949
Article Description: Privatization of probation services has increased nationwide in at least 10 states. When private probation initially began in the 1970s, there were few regulatory requirements for the supervision of misdemeanor offenders. The authors present the history of private probation and a review of statutory requirements for private probation companies providing supervision in several states. Missouri statutory requirements are compared with those of other states providing such services. The authors examine contractual agreements between the government and private entities, private probation officer training, education, salaries, private probationer supervision costs, and standards for private agencies providing ancillary treatment services. Analysis found statutes to lack standardization both between and within some states. Although some state statutes address private probation operations and contracts adequately, the authors question whether existing statutory guidelines in other jurisdictions are sufficient for operation of private probation supervision agencies and recommend more specific standards governing the use of private probation.
Employment and ex-offenders in the United States: Effects of legal and extra legal factors by Sesha Kethineni and David N. Falcone
Sage Journal: Probation Journal, Vol. 54, No. 1, 36-51 (2007)
Article Description: One of the critical issues facing the US correctional system is recidivism among male offenders. Although some studies suggest a link between post-incarceration unemployment and crime, others have taken a contrary theoretical approach and consider unemployment to be a major risk factor. To address the unemployment-crime relationship, this article examines the following: rates of incarceration; cultural factors and social pathologies; factors in prison affecting inmates' ability to gain employment skills; post-prison factors such as stigma, employers' concerns toward hiring ex-offenders, and legal barriers restricting the employment of ex-offenders.
Chapter 6: Specific Aspects Related to Probation
Probation Violations, Revocations, and Imprisonment: The Decisions of Probation Officers, Prosecutors, and Judges Pre- and Post-Mandatory Drug Treatment by Nancy Rodriguez and Vincent J. Webb
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice Policy Review, Vol. 18, No. 1, 3-30 (2007) DOI: 10.1177/0887403406292956
Article Description: The focus of previous probation studies has been on identifying the significant predictors of probation outcomes (e.g., violations and arrests) and probation processes (e.g., revocation). In this study, the authors examine how the passage of Arizona's mandatory drug treatment law affected probation violations and the revocation process. They rely on probation, prosecution, and sentencing case file data of imprisoned low-level drug offenders to analyze how the mandatory drug treatment law influenced the decision-making processes of probation officers, prosecutors, and judges. Findings indicate that the majority of revocations leading to incarceration involved technical violations and not the commission of new crimes. Furthermore, the type of violations significantly differed pre- and postimplementation of the law, as did prosecution and sentencing decisions. Policy implications for probation supervision and drug treatment laws are discussed.
Probation Staffing and Caseload Survey, 2006: Detailed Report.
Article Description: Results from a survey of caseload models and levels for the state of New York are presented. Information provided for the state overall and by local departments is given (if available) according to caseload types, caseload models, supervision only, investigation only, Family Court supervision and investigation only, Criminal Court investigation and supervision only, Criminal and Family Court investigation and supervision, and work week.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
Chapter 7: Specific Aspects Related to Parole
The Prioritization of Treatment among Texas Parole Officers by James F. Quinn and Larry A. Gould
Sage Journal: The Prison Journal, Vol. 83, No. 3, 323-336 (2003)
Article Description: A factor analysis using data from 559 parole officers is used to examine the relation-ship between officers `traits, work situation, and perceived needs. The results show an overwhelming desire for more treatment resources that challenge some established typologies of community supervision officers. Results suggest that seniority, job type, and caseload size were the most powerful factors in predicting the prioritization of treatment resources, whereas race, city size, political ideology, gender, and education also affect respondents' desire for treatment resources. Placed in a context of evolving agency policies, the growing popularity of the "new penology," and the privatization of mental health and substance abuse services, the interpretation of the data is of heuristic interest to national corrections planning.
Does Parole Work?—Revisited: Reframing the Discussion of the Impact of Postprison Supervision on Offender Outcome by Melinda D. Schlager and Kelly Robbins
Sage Journal: The Prison Journal, Vol. 88, No. 2, 234-251 (2008)
Article Description: Recent research evaluating differences in the method of release and outcome suggests that offenders who leave prison at the expiration of sentence reoffend at rates similar to offenders who are released from prison via discretionary or mandatory release. This research assesses offenders released from prison at the completion of sentence compared with those released from prison to discretionary parole in New Jersey. In addition, this study evaluates whether demographic differences exist between parolees and max outs as well as time to event. Findings suggest that discretionary parole releases in New Jersey are rearrested, reconvicted, and reincarcerated less often than offenders who max out.
Chapter 8: Needs-Based Case Management and Case Planning
Evaluation of Probation Case Management (PCM) for Drug-Involved Women Offenders by Monica Chan, Joseph Guydish, Rosemary Prem, Martha A. Jessup, Armando Cervantes, and Alan Bostrom
Sage Journal: Crime & Delinquency, Vol. 51, No. 4, 447-469 (2005) DOI: 10.1177/0011128704273580
Article Description: Based on availability of case management services, drug-involved women offenders entered either a probation case management (PCM) intervention(n = 65) or standard probation(n = 44). Participants were placed in the case management condition until all slots were filled, then placed in standard probation until case management slots opened. Participants were interviewed at program entry and at 6- and 12-month follow-up using measures of substance abuse, psychiatric symptoms, and social support. Results showed modest change over time in both conditions, but PCM did not result in more services or treatment, or better outcomes than standard probation. These findings are discussed in the context of state initiatives to apply treatment as an alternative to incarceration.
Female Offender Case Planning & Case Management
Article Description: Gender-responsive case planning and case management strategies for adult female offenders are provided. Sections of this document are: introduction; female offender case planning design principles; gender-responsive case planning goals; and sample case plans.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
The Effective Management of Juvenile Sex Offenders in the Community: Case Management Protocols
Article Description: Protocols that reflect in large part a best practices model for community-based management of juvenile sexual offenders are provided Sections comprising this document are: introduction; risk profiles and corresponding levels of supervision -- probation/community supervision following adjudication and parole and probation/community re-entry following residential treatment; case management protocols -- community supervision following adjudication and residential placement; probation supervision matrix; and parole supervision matrix.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
Chapter 9: The Viability of Treatment Perspectives
Probation, Mental Health, and Mandated Treatment: A National Survey by Jennifer L. Skeem, Paula Emke-Francis, and Jennifer Eno Louden
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice and Behavior, Vol. 33, No. 2, 158-184 (2006) DOI: 10.1177/0093854805284420
Article Description: A large number of probationers with mental illness (PMIs) are under supervision in the United States. In this national survey, we compared the supervision approaches of a matched sample of 66 specialty mental health and 25 traditional probation agencies. The prototypic specialty agency has five key features that distinguish it from the traditional model: (a) exclusive mental health caseloads, (b) meaningfully reduced caseloads, (c) sustained officer training, (d) active integration of internal and external resources to meet PMIs’ needs, and (e) problem-solving strategies as the chief means for addressing treatment noncompliance. Probation supervisors perceived these specialty features as "very useful" and perceived specialty agencies as more effective than traditional ones for PMIs. However, the most important feature of the prototypic specialty agency may also be the most endangered: reduced caseloads. Implications for research and practice are presented.
Collaboration Among Sex Offender Treatment Providers and Probation and Parole Officers: The Beliefs and Behaviors of Treatment Providers by Robert J. McGrath, Georgia Cumming, and John Holt
Sage Journal: Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, Vol. 14, No. 1, 49-65. DOI: 10.1177/107906320201400104
Article Description: New and emerging collaborative responses to sex offender management are challenging traditional notions about how treatment providers and probation and parole officers (POs) deliver services to this difficult population. Typically, sex offender treatment professionals provide community-based services to offenders who are supervised by POs. Yet, no comprehensive survey has investigated how treatment providers and POs collaborate and view their relationships with each other. This national random survey examined the beliefs and behaviors of community-based adult sex-offender treatment providers concerning various types of provider and PO interactions and collaborative models. Overall, treatment providers reported that they value frequent and substantive communication with POs concerning mutual clients. There was, however, considerable diversity in practice and opinion among providers with regard to POs leading, coleading, and observing sex offender treatment groups. Treatment providers' opinions about various clinical, ethical, and legal issues evident in these collaborative approaches are examined.
Chapter 10: Community-Based Residential Treatment Facilities
Comprehensive Residential Education, Arts, and Substance Abuse Treatment (Creasat) A Model Treatment Program for Juvenile Offenders by Donnie W. Watson, Lorrie Bisesi, Susie Tanamly, and Noemi Mai
Sage Journal: Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice, Vol. 1, No. 4, 388-401 (2003) DOI: 10.1177/1541204003256312
Article Description: This article describes an alternative treatment model for adolescent substance abusers confined to a residential juvenile correction facility. Substance abuse trends among youth and the connection between substance use and juvenile delinquency are explored. Essential components of effective adolescent substance abuse treatment programs are outlined with particular attention to arts-based delinquency intervention programs. Specifically, this article describes the program philosophy and program components of a model treatment program for juvenile offenders—Comprehensive Residential Education, Arts, and Substance Abuse Treatment (CREASAT). An integral piece of the CREASAT program is The Matrix Institute addictions model for adolescent treatment, which takes into account the developmental factors that initiate and/or maintain substance use. This comprehensive model is based on social learning theory, cognitive behavioral principles, and the adolescent's environment and readiness for change. Finally, the importance of cultural skills for substance abuse treatment professionals in the juvenile justice system is discussed.
A Review of Clinical Characteristics and Residential Treatments for Adolescent Delinquents with Mental Health Disorders: A Promising Residential Program by Lee A. Underwood, Louis Barretti, Tera L. Storms, and Nicole Safonte-Strumolo
Sage Journal: Trauma, Violence, & Abuse, Vol. 5, No. 3, 199-242 (2004) DOI: 10.1177/1524838004264344
Article Description: As treatment systems throughout the country have deinstitutionalized, under-use of community-based residential treatment systems has escalated. Reliance on juvenile justice systems for the care of the mentally ill adolescent has increased. There is considerable overlap between the mentally ill adolescent population within the community-based mental health systems and the offender population within the juvenile justice systems. With the inconsistent epidemiological prevalence and longitudinal treatment data, mental health treatment providers have also begun addressing this problem. This is currently being done by designing and implementing community-based residential mental health programs for delinquent adolescents of the juvenile justice system as well as nondelinquent adolescents within the mental health treatment systems. Providers have relied on both systems’ literature in establishing theoretical treatment programs. The authors review critical treatment components currently used by both the treatment and juvenile justice systems. A promising integrative program is described
Chapter 11: Intermediate Sanctions
What Influences Offenders’ Willingness to Serve Alternative Sanctions? by David C. May and Peter B. Wood
Sage Journal: The Prison Journal, Vol. 85, No. 2, 145-167 (2005)
Article Description: Previous research has revealed gender and racial differences in offenders’ perceptions of the severity of prison compared to alternative sanctions. This research extends that literature by examining the relative impact of demographic, correctional experience, and attitudinal indicators on the amount of probation, community service, and boot camp that male and female prison inmates will endure to avoid 1 year of actual imprisonment. Results highlight differences in perceptions of the relative severity of alternative sanctions among prisoners and identify factors that contribute to these differences. Implications for correctional policy and practice are discussed.
Economic Sanctions in Criminal Justice: Purposes, Effects, and Implications by R. Barry Ruback and Mark H. Bergstrom
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice and Behavior, Vol. 33, No. 2, 242-273 (2006) DOI: 10.1177/0093854805284414
Article Description: In this article, the authors present a framework for considering five different economic sanctions: restitution, costs, fees, fines, and forfeiture. The intended purposes of these sanctions are described, and the research on the imposition of these sanctions is reviewed, particularly the extent to which offenders are likely to pay these court-ordered amounts and the effect of economic sanctions on recidivism. Four specific problems with economic sanctions are presented: setting the amounts of the sanctions, ensuring payment, setting priorities among different sanctions, and defining the roles of probation officers in the monitoring of payment.
Chapter 12: Juvenile Offenders
Sage Journal: Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice, Vol. 4, No. 1, 34-54 (2006) DOI: 10.1177/1541204005282311
Article Description: This exploratory study examines fear of general and gang-related crime among juvenile probationers. Most had used alcohol and marijuana before, and many had committed at least one crime during the study period. Most were afraid of shooting and murder, and about one third were afraid of other crimes. More participation in drug use and delinquency behaviors was generally unrelated to fear.
Sage Journal: Crime & Delinquency (2008). DOI:10.1177/0011128707307960
Article Description: Data from surveys of juvenile court probation officers in four states are analyzed to understand professional orientations toward two seemingly contrasting goals of contemporary juvenile justice systems: punishment and treatment. These self-reported juvenile probation officer orientations are considered in relation to three clusters of variables representing somewhat distinct hypothetical bases of professional orientation: court context, decision-maker status characteristics, and resonance with legal, victim’s rights, and character issues. Although court context and status characteristics distinguish attitudes toward treatment and punishment, attitudinal resonance is an especially strong predictor of these orientations. Rather than mutually exclusive or static ideologies, treatment and punishment appear to be flexible, overlapping goals that appeal to officers according to their congruence with other personal convictions. Younger probation officers are also found to be more punitive, net of other influences, suggesting cohort replacement may accelerate the displacement of juvenile rehabilitative ideals. Implications for juvenile justice research and policy are considered.
Sage Journal: The Prison Journal, Vol. 84, No. 4, 472-485 (2004)
Article Description: Though many treatment programs for adolescent sexual offenders identify specific clinical goals such as the reduction of cognitive distortions, the enhancement of sexual knowledge, the development of prosocial attitudes toward sexual behavior, the enhancement of empathic abilities, and the enhancement of an offender’s self-esteem, there remains a deficit in research assessing the attainment of these treatment goals. Using a cross-over longitudinal design, the present study examines pretreatment and posttreatment data collected from a residential sex offender programfor incarcerated adolescent males (N = 100). The observed results provided support for the attainment of the program’s clinical goals with significant changes observed in the levels of cognitive distortions, sexual knowledge, attitudes about sexual behavior, and self-esteem. Partial support was observed as related to the goal of enhancing offender empathic abilities. The need for continued research examining treatment outcomes and the utility of employing existing measures in evaluating treatment is discussed.
Chapter 13: Specialized and Problematic Offender Typologies
Recidivism Among Drug Offenders Following Exposure to Treatment by John R. Hepburn
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice Policy Review, Vol. 16, No. 2, 237-259 (2005)
Article Description: The contemporary debate about punishment versus treatment for drug-using criminal offenders often revolves around the pragmatic issue of the extent to which treatment is more effective than punishment at reducing the probability of subsequent criminal behavior. Although there is growing evidence that treatment works, it is equally apparent that the effects of exposure to treatment vary by offender characteristics, offense characteristics, and the degree of program involvement. Using data on 3,328 drug-using offenders eligible for diversion from prosecution to a community treatment program, multivariate survival models indicate significant differences in the time of rearrest during a 5-year follow-up period, suggesting that the act of entering treatment is a signal of the offender’s readiness for treatment and that the time to rearrest is affected by exposure to treatment. The findings are discussed in terms of current efforts to use the threat of legal sanction to motivate criminal offenders into drug treatment.
Cognitive/Behavioral Treatment for Sexual Offenders: An Examination of Recidivism by Kathryn England Aytes, Sam S. Olsen, Todd Zakrajsek, Paul Murray, and Randall Ireson
Sage Journal: Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, Vol. 13, No. 4, 223-231 DOI: 10.1177/107906320101300401
Article Description: Recent research in the treatment of sexual offenders suggests that comprehensive cognitive-behavioral approaches may yield lower recidivism. This study reviewed such a program, existing in Jackson County, Oregon, since 1982. Offenders were mandated into this community-based program upon conviction of a felony or misdemeanor sexual offense, and averaged 2-3 years of participation. A group of offenders who participated in the Jackson County program between 1985 and 1995 was identified through archival data from the Oregon Department of Corrections. The data revealed success or nonsuccess in treatment, and any new convictions for sexual or nonsexual offenses. A control group of nonsexual offenders in Jackson County, and a group of sexual offenders in Linn County who did not have access to any treatment program were also studied. As hypothesized, those Jackson County offenders who successfully completed treatment had lower recidivism rates than those who were unsuccessful in the program. The observed effect of the program was particularly strong for offenders who remained in treatment for 1 year or more. When review was restricted to those participants, the reoffense rate for Jackson County offenders was reduced by over 40% when compared with Linn County offenders.
Perspectives on Probation and Mandated Mental Health Treatment in Specialized and Traditional Probation Departments
Article Description: Results from the "first reported study to investigate how POs [Probation Officers] implement mandates to participate in psychiatric treatment" are reported (p. 429). Sections of this article following an abstract are: method; results and discussion regarding contextual influences, relationship influences, and strategic influences on mandate implementation, and perceived effect of these three influences on adherence and outcomes; and conclusion and implications.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
Chapter 14: Diversity Issues and Cultural Competence in a Changing Era
Supervision Strategies and Approaches for Female Parolees: Examining the Link Between Unmet Needs and Parolee Outcome by Pamela J. Schram, Barbara A. Koons-Witt, Frank P. Williams, III, and Marilyn D. McShane
Sage Article: Crime & Delinquency, Vol. 52, No. 3, 450-471 (2006)
Article Description: A number of parolees are returning to the community with programming needs that may not have been addressed during their incarceration; these unmet needs may subsequently affect their successful reintegration into the community. Although there is an increasing female parole population, there has been a paucity of research concerning female parolees. The current study examines the types of needs identified at intake from a sample of 546 female parolees. The results revealed the following. First, if a parolee was employed, had stable living arrangements, and was assessed as needing and receiving some type of drug and/or alcohol program intervention, she was less likely to fail on parole. Second, many of these women were underassessed for having needs for drug and alcohol treatment as well as employment, housing, and other assistance. This underassessment may be because of an increasing emphasis on parole supervision (i.e., custody) rather than treatment in parole agencies.
Testing the Level of Service Inventory–Revised (LSI-R) for Racial/Ethnic Bias by Kevin W. Whiteacre
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice Policy Review, Vol. 17, No. 3, 330-342 (2006) DOI: 10.1177/0887403405284766
Article Description: In corrections, the use of objective offender risk classification instruments is increasing. Some observers have raised concerns that these instruments might over classify poor and minority offenders, but there is little research to support these claims. Using contingency tables to compare risk categories and program performance, this study examines the Level of Service Inventory-Revised for racial/ethnic differences in classification errors at a large federal community corrections center in the United States. The study found a tendency toward more classification errors for African Americans than Caucasians or Hispanics, though the types and rates of errors were dependent on the choice of the cutoff score and the performance measure to be predicted. These findings highlight the need for correctional facilities to conduct local tests of their classification instruments. The study provides an easy and practical model for such tests.
Race, Ethnicity, and Habitual-Offender Sentencing: A Multilevel Analysis of Individual and Contextual Threat by Matthew S. Crow and Kathrine A. Johnson
Sage Journal: Criminal Justice Policy Review, Vol. 19, No. 1, 63-83 (2008)
Article Description: Although sentencing research has expanded over the past decade, very little has been published in the area of habitual-offender statutes. The current research revisits and updates two of the few studies that focused on these sentencing enhancements. Crawford, Chiricos, and Kleck (1998), and later Crawford (2000), examined the application of the habitual-offender sentence enhancement for offenders in Florida in 1992 and 1993. Consistent with the prior research, this study includes individual-level as well as county-level variables and also updates the analysis by examining more recent data, including a measure of ethnicity, and using hierarchical general linear modeling to simultaneously model individual-level data nested within counties. The racial threat perspective serves as the backdrop to explain racial and ethnic disparity in punishment decisions based on contextual as well as individual threat. The findings indicate that racial and ethnic sentence disparity exists when habitual-offender status is invoked in Florida.
Chapter 15: Program Evaluation and Future Trends in Community Corrections
Working Their Way Out of Offending: An Evaluation of Two Probation Employment Schemes
Article Description: The impact of two probation employment programs in England is examined. The following sections comprise this report: executive summary; introduction; the ASSET (Advice and Support Services for Education and Training) Project; perspectives on ASSET; the Surrey Springboard Project; perspectives on ASSET; the Surrey Springboard Project; perspectives on Surrey Springboard; the Reconviction Study; and conclusions and recommendations. Generally, the programs were well received by both offenders and probation staff, and an analysis of reconviction rates found lower rates among ASSET participants than non-participants.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
Evaluating an Experimental Intensive Juvenile Probation Program: Supervision and Official Outcomes by Jodi Lane, Susan Turner, Terry Fain, and Amber Sehgal
Sage Journal: Crime & Delinquency, Vol. 51, No. 1, 26-52 (2005)
Article Description: In 1996, California provided funding to 14 county probation agencies to implement multiagency, comprehensive services to keep troubled youths from recommitting crime and progressing farther into the justice system. We report results of a randomized experiment used to evaluate Ventura County’s 4-year demonstration project called the South Oxnard Challenge Project (SOCP). We followed youths for more than 2 years after random assignment to SOCP or routine probation. We found no significant differences between SOCP and routine juvenile probationers on recidivism or other official-record outcomes. Although most youths were rearrested, most did not receive a sustained petition or incarceration. The modest additional services did not affect outcomes.
Texas' Project RIO (Re-Integration of Offenders)
Article Description: Providing job preparation services to inmates while they are still incarcerated in state prisons, Project RIO also provides job placement services to parolees in every county in Texas. According to a 1992 independent evaluation, a large percentage of RIO participants found employment, and only 23 percent of high-risk participants returned to prison compared with 38 percent of non-RIO parolees.
SOURCE: National Institute of Corrections Website
Program Variation in Treatment Outcomes Among Women in Residential Drug Treatment by Christine E. Grella, Vandana Joshi, and Yih-Ing Hser
Sage Journal: Evaluation Review, Vol. 24, No. 4, 364-383 (2000).
Article Description: Multilevel modeling was used to assess the program characteristics associated with treatment retention among 637 women in 16 residential drug treatment programs in the Drug Abuse Treatment Outcome Study. Women who were pregnant or had dependent children had higher rates of retention in programs in which there were higher percentages of other such women. Longer retention was associated with higher rates of posttreatment abstinence. Bivariate analyses showed that programs with higher proportions of pregnant and parenting women provided more services related to women's needs. The findings support the provision of specialized services and programs for women in order to improve outcomes of drug abuse treatment.