Recent CSG Justice Center Posts

Reentry Essentials: Addressing Mental Health Needs among People in the Criminal Justice System

Reentry Essentials: Addressing Mental Health Needs among People in the Criminal Justice System

A disproportionate number of people in the nation’s criminal justice system face mental health issues: a Bureau of Justice Statistics report found, for example, that people in U.S. prisons and jails are three to five times more likely to experience serious psychological distress than the general adult population. While there is an overwhelming need to provide effective treatment, challenges exist in quantifying the extent of that need and taking a strategic approach across systems—from law enforcement to community-based reentry services.

Stepping Up Initiative Expands Push for Counties to Collect Data on Number of People in Jails Who Have Mental Illnesses

Stepping Up Initiative Expands Push for Counties to Collect Data on Number of People in Jails Who Have Mental Illnesses

The Stepping Up initiative recently launched a national effort to help counties collect accurate, accessible data on the number of people entering their jails who have mental illnesses. As part of the effort, seven rural and urban “Innovator Counties” have been selected as models for their expertise in accurately identifying these individuals and consistently collecting data on them.

10-Year Anniversary of the Second Chance Act Celebrated on Capitol Hill

As policymakers continue to focus on the importance of safe and successful reentry among people leaving prisons and jails, and with President Trump designating April 2018 “Second Chance Month,” a group of national leaders paused recently to reflect on the impact of the Second Chance Act—a law passed in 2008 that has supported work to improve reentry outcomes in communities throughout the country.

Baltimore County to Further Improve Crisis Response System Based on Independent Assessment

Baltimore County to Further Improve Crisis Response System Based on Independent Assessment

The Baltimore County, Maryland, county executive recently released a report that provides recommendations for the county to better position its police-mental health collaboration (PMHC), the Baltimore County Crisis Response System, to provide an effective and comprehensive response that is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and maximizes both public safety and health outcomes.

Announcements

Register for Webinar: Reducing the Number of People with Mental Illnesses Booked into Jails

Register for Webinar: Reducing the Number of People with Mental Illnesses Booked into Jails

Join the Stepping Up partners for the first webinar in the four key measures series, where a national expert and representatives from Pima County, AZ, will provide an overview of each of the key measures, describe strategies for reducing the number of jail bookings for people who have mental illnesses, and outline data points to collect, analyze, and track over time.

WEBINARS

PUBLICATIONS

Justice Reinvestment in Missouri: Policy Framework

Justice Reinvestment in Missouri: Policy Framework

The final report of the CSG Justice Center outlines policy recommendations developed in collaboration with the Missouri Justice Reinvestment Task Force. Among other things, these policies aim to reduce violent crime, increase the availability and effectiveness of community-based treatment for substance addiction and mental illnesses for people in the criminal justice system, and reduce recidivism.

Justice Reinvestment: How States Use Data to Design Innovative Strategies to Reduce Crime, Recidivism, and Costs

Justice Reinvestment: How States Use Data to Design Innovative Strategies to Reduce Crime, Recidivism, and Costs

State policymakers are grappling with upticks in violent crime, the opioid epidemic, people who have mental illnesses in the justice system, high rates of recidivism, and the high cost of corrections, all while trying to improve services for victims and increase opportunities for people returning to communities from jail and prison. To tackle these issues, more than 25 states have partnered with the CSG Justice Center to use a justice reinvestment approach.

Baltimore County, Maryland: A Police-Mental Health Collaboration Assessment

Baltimore County, Maryland: A Police-Mental Health Collaboration Assessment

In September 2016, Baltimore County, Maryland’s county executive asked the CSG Justice Center to conduct an independent assessment of its law enforcement and behavioral health collaboration, the Baltimore County Crisis Response System, which helps the county respond to people who have behavioral health needs. This report describes the assessment’s methodology, highlights key findings, and discusses those recommendations and strategies.

Dauphin County, Pennsylvania: A County Justice and Mental Health Systems Improvement Project

Dauphin County, Pennsylvania: A County Justice and Mental Health Systems Improvement Project

Based on a quantitative and qualitative analysis, and with the guidance of members of the county’s Criminal Justice Advisory Board and other senior county and state leaders, five key findings were identified that prompted the development of a set of strategic policy recommendations to improve outcomes for people in Dauphin County’s criminal justice system who have SMI. This report includes the key findings and policy recommendations.

JUSTICE CENTER IN THE NEWS

Counties Across the Country Participate in National Stepping Up Day of Action

During this Day of Action, county officials are hosting events or participating in local activities to share with constituents the progress made in addressing the prevalence of people who have mental illnesses in jails; raise public awareness and understanding of this important issue; and emphasize their commitment to creating data-driven, systems-level changes to policy and practice to achieve Stepping Up goals.

Colorado Launches Comprehensive Review of Juvenile Justice System

“Kids don’t belong in prison. We know from the data that when children are incarcerated they usually become repeat offenders,” said Governor John Hickenlooper. “This data-driven review will help us provide youths the best chance to successfully transition to a crime-free, productive adulthood.”

Diversion Program Would Help Keep Mentally Ill Out of Jail

Nonviolent offenders with mental illness could be diverted away from New Jersey’s mainstream criminal justice system and into a rehabilitation program designed to provide treatment for their psychiatric disorder, under an initiative envisioned by a longtime Democratic Senator that also reflects the goals of a growing national movement.

Dauphin County, PA, Rolls out Plan to Reform Criminal Justice System for Mentally Ill

Closures of state hospitals and limited funding for treatment services has put stress on jail systems across the country, and Dauphin County is no exception. In 2016, 44 percent of the county’s mentally ill inmates returned to prison within a year of their initial booking.
Officials say now, it’s time to make a change.