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Second Chance Act Innovations in Supervision

SRR forum participants

Staff from the Coconino Online Probation Education program, a 2013 SCA grantee, received an adult probation award from the Coconino County, Arizona, Board of Supervisors in recognition of their work to enhance access to programming and supporting prosocial relationships for people on probation .

This grant program provides funding for states, units of local government, and federally recognized tribal governments to develop and test innovative strategies and implement evidence-based probation and parole approaches that effectively address people’s criminogenic risk and needs and reduce recidivism. The U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) administers the awards.

Objectives and Deliverables

The Innovations in Supervision program (formerly known as Smart Supervision and Smart Probation) is part of BJA’s Innovations Suite of programs, which invest in the development of practitioner-researcher partnerships that use data, evidence, and innovation to assess problems and create strategies and interventions that are both effective and economical. A required deliverable of the Innovations in Supervision program is an action plan informed by the grantee’s research partner, comprising a problem analysis, logic model, summary of strategies and intended outcomes, and research base for proposed strategies.

Allowable uses for grant funds include:

  • Increasing the capacity of states, localities, and tribal communities to help probation or parole agencies improve community supervision by implementing evidence-based practices;
  • Testing new policies and strategies in community supervision and treatment;
  • Developing information technology systems to enhance individual accountability, interagency cooperation, or the integration of risk and needs assessment results with information about substance use, mental health, employment, and education needs;
  • Expanding collaboration and strategic partnerships between community supervision agencies and law enforcement;
  • Planning and implementing strategies to expand options for access to health care;
  • Convening an interagency working group to analyze drivers of the jurisdiction’s probation population; and
  • Evaluating the results of the new strategies and tools tested through this initiative.

For more information, see the most recent BJA grant solicitation and a related webinar.

Current and Past Grantees

BJA has awarded 43 grants through this program: 9 in 2012; 6 in 2013; 7 in 2014; 7 in 2015; 7 in 2016; and 7 in 2017.