Inter alia.

Author:Carroll, Pat

The implementation of the Justice Reinvestment Initiative has been successful in promoting interest in justice system reform and use of evidence-based practices across 17 states, according to a comprehensive report by the U.S. Department of Justice. Bureau of Justice Assistance. The report, "Justice Reinvestment Initiative State Assessment Report," assessed the results of criminal justice reform, focusing on bipartisan collaboration and data-driven policy development, with the goal of reducing justice system populations and becoming more cost-efficient. Cooperation between state government officials and criminal justice practitioners allowed the passage of Justice Reinvestment Initiative legislation and support for justice reforms and the reinvestment of resources. Population and cost drivers like parole and probation revocations, sentencing policies and practices, and inefficient community supervision and support were common themes among the 17 states. As a result, states have begun instituting new strategies to resolve these issues.

Sixteen states implemented risk and needs assessments to help predict a person's risk to reoffend, and to help form decisions about detention. incarceration and release conditions to better allocate supervision and treatment resources. Eleven states developed or expanded upon their community-based treatment programs by increasing funding for key services such as substance abuse and requiring reentry plans for released inmates. Sentencing changes were also made in 11 states--revising mandatory minimums, reclassifying offenses and expanding options other than incarceration. Further assessment will be beneficial in determining the Justice Reinvestment Initiative's full impact on state justice systems and whether it aligns with projected population reductions and cost savings. To view the report, visit

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