A Five-Level Risk and Needs System

Maximizing Assessment Results in Corrections through the Development of a Common Language

Over the past two years, the National Reentry Resource Center, in partnership with Public Safety Canada, has facilitated efforts to examine and improve the standardization of the terminology associated with risk and needs levels and the interpretation and application of risk and needs assessment results in correctional settings. This white paper reports the results of those efforts.

R. Karl Hanson, Guy Bourgon, Robert J. McGrath, Daryl Kroner, David A. D’Amora, Shenique S. Thomas, and Lahiz P. Tavarez | January 2017 | The Council of State Governments Justice Center, National Reentry Resource Center, and Public Safety Canada

This white paper is written for researchers, practitioners, and policymakers who share the goal of reducing recidivism by improving the application of risk and needs assessments, and presents a model for supporting the implementation of Risk-Need-Responsivity principles through a standardized five-level risk and needs assessment system.

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