Kicking off the country’s first-ever National #ReentryWeek, U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch invited states to partner with the U.S. Department of Justice in helping people returning home from federal prisons to “turn the page” on their criminal justice involvement. In letters to all 50 governors, Lynch urged state governments to work with the DOJ to enable people leaving federal prisons to use their Bureau of Prisons inmate ID card and official release documentation to secure state-issued IDs.
Two counties—one in Ohio, the other in Utah—are backing their words with action following separate reports from The Council of State Governments Justice Center that highlighted major disparities in the length of time people with serious mental illnesses stay in each county’s local jail and the rate at which they’re rearrested following their release compared to people with out these illnesses.
Teams of behavioral health and criminal justice professionals gathered in Washington, DC, this week to address the “human consequences of an inhumane system” in which 2 million adults with serious mental illnesses are admitted to county jails every year.
On April 4, the Office of General Counsel at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued “Guidance on Application of Fair Housing Act Standards to the Use of Criminal Records,” which states that the broad exclusion of people with criminal records in the sale or rental of housing or other real estate transactions may be in violation of the Fair Housing Act.
With more people with mental illnesses in jails than ever before—the majority of whom are not a public safety risk—county leaders across the country have united around a central realization: Jails can no longer be used as de facto psychiatric facilities.
Megan Younger, a social worker with 16 years of experience in emergency mental health services, has been the designated co-responder embedded in the Overland Park Police Department since May 2014, a position made possible by a Bureau of Justice Assistance Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program grant awarded to the City of Overland Park in 2013.
- Department of Justice to Launch Inaugural National Reentry Week
- Richard Cho to Join CSG Justice Center as Behavioral Health Division Director
- Apply Now: Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program
- Opinion: How Federal Investments Make Us Smarter about Reducing Recidivism
- Mental Health Reform: Improving Access to Care & Reducing Incarceration
The initiative is carried out through partnerships between researchers, educators, and other stakeholders, including law enforcement and mental health professionals. Funding under this program may be used to support and address a wide range of school safety activities, such as school resource officer training, school-based mental health, or improved disciplinary policies.
This initiative supports statewide juvenile justice reform efforts to reduce reoffending, improve outcomes for youth, and reduce racial and ethnic disparities.
This program furthers the department’s mission by decreasing the use of secure confinement for justice system-involved youth through the use of alternatives to incarceration that have been shown to produce better youth outcomes.
In this webinar, officials from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) and The Council of State Governments Justice Center explain the Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program and how law enforcement agencies can apply for this grant.
In this webinar, presenters review the latest findings on the relationship between improved housing stability and reduced recidivism for registered sex offenders; share stories from two communities that have found effective solutions to housing registered sex offenders; and discuss the numerous barriers to developing housing options for registered sex offenders and strategies for overcoming them.
In this webinar, officials from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance and The Council of State Governments Justice Center explain the Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program and its application process.
This webinar was presented to Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program and Second Chance Act Co-Occurring Substance Use and Mental Disorders grantees discussed strategies for developing information sharing collaborations between criminal justice and behavioral health systems.
In this webinar, officials from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance and the National Reentry Resource Center explain the grant program and application process.
This fact sheet is designed to educate policymakers on the impact of, and models for, issuing state identification for people leaving prisons and jails across the country. State-issued identification is often required to secure housing, apply for employment, and access social services—all factors that can play a critical role in reentry.
This presentation to the Incarceration Issues Committee focuses on the state’s sentencing trends, practices, and policies.
Over the past 30 years, the Texas legislature has enacted many criminal justice reforms that shape policy through data analysis, focus on people with mental illnesses in the justice system, and improve distinct components of the system, from indigent defense to parole.
The second working group presentation focuses on key statutory frameworks, sentencing polices, and practices that impact incarceration and community supervision in Massachusetts.
Presentation to the first Pennsylvania Justice Reinvestment Initiative Working Group meeting that focuses on analysis of the state’s sentencing policy and practices, and their impact on county and state incarceration and community supervision.
JUSTICE CENTER IN THE NEWS
Drugs are a problem in North Dakota, just as they are across the rest country. Many who get trapped in a cycle of addiction don’t get the help they need when they’re sent to jail. Now, lawmakers and other officials are trying to tackle that problem.
North Dakota is increasingly filling its prisons and jails with low-level felony offenders who may be better served by probation and treatment, and drug offenses are the main driver, officials heard Wednesday from researchers helping the state identify ways to reduce spending on corrections and prevent repeat offenses.
Amid growing recognition that large numbers of U.S. jail inmates suffer from mental health problems, three major organizations have gathered teams from 50 places in Washington, D.C., to plan a detailed attack on the problem.
Massachusetts could be spending as much as $8 million a year incarcerating people on misdemeanor motor-vehicle charges, according to a Council on State Governments analysis.
The analysis by the CSG’s Justice Center found that motor-vehicle and property offenses accounted for 47 percent of all sentences to county houses of corrections in 2013, the most recent year for which figures were available.
The work of the Rhode Island Justice Reinvestment Working Group, assembled by Gov. Gina Raimondo to improve the state’s criminal justice system, seems poised to come to fruition as the anniversary of its July 2015 inception draws nearer. According to the Council of State Governments Justice Center’s website, the group was created to reform the Rhode Island probation system.
The Lowell Sun By Katie Lannan BOSTON — People who had been convicted of prior offenses accounted for nearly three quarters of new convictions in Massachusetts in a single year, according to a data analysis presented Tuesday to a working […]