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News items related to community corrections

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SF Commission Explores What Works: Examining a Collaborative Diversion Program

Local model practices exist throughout the nation and there is substantial empirical research available to interested parties who seek to re-think their approach to juvenile and criminal justice. Justice leaders do not need to reinvent the wheel, but learn from others who have boldly risked a different approach within their local jurisdiction.

Innovation in a Land of Justice by Geography

In an era of Realignment a model program is born, San Francisco's Adult Probation Department in partnership with a variety of community-based organizations celebrates the opening of the new Community Assessment and Service Center (CASC).

Nigeria’s evolving juvenile justice system

An article by Iyabode Ogunniran discussing the evolution of juvenile justice in Nigeria was released in the Spring 2013 edition of the Justice Policy Journal today. 

Merced sheriff unveils vision for AB 109 locally with new Trident Center

Merced County Sheriff Mark Pazin on Thursday unveiled a new one-stop shop to provide various services to county jail inmates released under the guidelines established by Assembly Bill 109, the state's prison realignment law.

Announcing Relocation and Updated Contact Information

In conjunction with the merger, CJCJ relocated into the former-NCSL headquarters in April 2012 at 40 Boardman Place, San Francisco, CA 94103. Please update your contact information with our new telephone extensions.

Announcing Merger and Plans to Rebrand

We are pleased to announce an exciting development for the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice (CJCJ). CJCJ’s merger with the Northern California Service League (NCSL) is now complete.  The union of these two venerable nonprofit agencies creates an even stronger and more vibrant organization ready to face the challenges of the future.

Community-based practices that repair harm

In the field of juvenile and criminal justice you often hear a buzzing in your ears and it’s the sound of buzz words like “restorative justice.”  Words highlighting model practices are often utilized widely in this field, but what do these practices really mean.  What do these practices really look like when implemented in the community?

Bread & Roses performs in SF jails with help from CJCJ staff
On Monday evening, December 10, 2012, the San Francisco Sheriff's Department and CJCJ are co-hosting Bread & Roses , an organization providing free performing arts shows to people who live in institutions or are otherwise isolated from society. The Bread & Roses choir will perform shows in the San Francisco jails to over 200 inmates.  The choir consists of volunteer vocalists who donate their time and talents to uplift the human spirit. CJCJ Children's Waiting Rooms staff is providing…
CCP committees draw fire over composition, accountability issues
Implementation problems highlighted in a recent Sacramento Bee editorial stand to undermine California's criminal justice realignment efforts.  Most notably, the composition of county-level Community Corrections Partnership (CCP) committees has been called into question. Voting members of these committees are as follows: chiefs of probation and police, the public defender, the presiding judge of the Superior Court, the sheriff, and one social services worker or drug/alcohol abuse…
California and juvenile justice realignment: Solid ideas, shaky execution
While Texas and Missouri continue to make steady, substantial steps towards juvenile justice realignment (as mentioned recently by CJCJ), California seems mired in a state of indecision.  Though acknowledging the need for wholesale reform, the state lacks the political commitment to implement the policy changes necessary to accomplish it.  In 2011-2012, Governor Brown proposed full-scale juvenile justice realignment with support from the Little Hoover Commission, the Legislative Analysts…
Meaningful mental health outcomes for youth
In the last sixteen years, California's counties have assumed an increased responsibility for the state's justice involved youth.  The Governor and independent policy organizations such as the Legislative Analyst's Office have argued that the state's counties are better equipped than the state's youth correctional system to serve high needs youth.  This vulnerable population is often exposed to childhood trauma and violence resulting in an increased need for mental health services which can be…
Going local: Lessons from tribal justice
A year into California's criminal justice Realignment, preliminary data  indicates overcrowded state prisons populations are in fact declining.  However, sentencing practices across the state remain varied. While many counties have been able to decrease their reliance on state prison, over half of California's counties experienced an increase in new prison commitments for certain offenses since realignment. For these counties, continued state-dependence could be resulting from the lack of…
San Francisco boasts of prison-realignment successes
San Francisco boasts of prison-realignment successes San Francisco Examiner, October 1, 2012
Legislation to provide more opportunities for unsentenced detainees
In California, local county jail bed space is not always for the guilty.  Approximately 50,000 un-sentenced individuals are confined to the state's county jails, awaiting their time before a judge.  A majority of these individuals are confined to local jails because they are not able to post bail .  This contributes to the 71% state average of un-sentenced individuals in county jails.  These individuals have not necessarily been deemed a flight-risk or a danger to society; they just lack the…
Federal officials with anti-violence forum see big changes in Salinas
Federal officials with anti-violence forum see big changes in Salinas Monterey County Herald, August 15, 2012
Cross-sector collaborations demonstrate impressive results
Counties across the state are facing unprecedented new challenges in their adult and juvenile criminal justice systems.  Pressures are increasing on local systems due to adult corrections realignment under Assembly Bill 109 and unprecedented drops in federal funding for rehabilitation of juvenile offenders.   California counties are responding to these challenges with a wide variety of responses.  While county responses vary, one factor remains constant throughout the state: The…
Red Rose Culinary Academy off to a delicious start
The Red Rose Culinary Academy is an innovative program from Brothers for Change, Inc .  Led by head chef Henry Howard, the program is designed to enable formerly incarcerated individuals to engage in vocational and academic training in the food industry, which will eventually lead to sustainable employment.  The 16-week culinary arts course prepares students with the skills necessary to enter the food industry workforce upon graduation.  Curriculum modules include a strong foundation in the…
CJCJ staff present on criminal justice policy & reform
On Monday July 9, 2012 I co-presented with my colleague Gerald Miller on criminal justice policy and reform efforts to a group of college students from throughout Northern California.  The students were participating in the Bay Area Urban Project , a 6-week urban immersion program that explores the major issues affecting lower-income communities in cities through a theological lens.  The students in this program study immigration policy, education disparities, human trafficking, and other…
Build bigger jails or invest in community-based alternatives?
In 2010, 71 percent of California's jail population were those offenders who were unsentenced and awaiting resolution of their cases.  This figure not only exceeds the pretrial detainee national average, but also represents a major shift away from the traditional use of jails where inmates are detained as a form of punishment.  However, many of these pretrial detainees are not being held because they have been determined to be a danger to society or represent a flight risk. Rather, they remain…
Juvenile realignment: is local supervision the answer?
Juvenile realignment: is local supervision the answer? Victorville Daily Press, May 4, 2012
The Case for Phased Juvenile Justice Realignment in California

The Case for Phased Juvenile Justice Realignment in California Reclaiming Futures, April 30, 2012

Fight the good fight: stand up against child abuse
Internationally, I believe many individuals would agree that child abuse is an unacceptable behavior in various cultures and communities all over the world, though I recognize there are different viewpoints on what may be considered child abuse. April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month and "a time to recognize that we each can play a part in promoting the social and emotional well-being of children and families in communities." I find it difficult to believe any rational person would…
The Case for Phased Juvenile Justice Realignment in California

The Case for Phased Juvenile Justice Realignment in California California Progress Report, April 24, 2012

The Case for Phased Juvenile Justice Realignment in California

The Case for Phased Juvenile Justice Realignment in California Juvenile Justice Information Exchange, April 23, 2012

The "Zimmerman Dilemma": How afraid should we be of young black men?
While commentators led by no less than President Obama  have blamed violent crime on "the entire generation of young men in our society" and have warned us to fear young black men in particular, those Americans more thoughtful than politicians running for office, exploitative interest groups, sensationalist reporters, and racist fear-mongers know that "entire generations" don't commit violence; individuals do. If the individual approaching you is a black teenaged male, how much more likely are…

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