Building Community Capacity
Coalition Building to Lower Recidivism
The Bureau of Justice Assistance has awarded the City of Racine, Wisconsin a Second Chance Act grant for developing a strategic prisoner re-entry plan. This effort brinsg together key stakeholders and agencies in Racine in an effort to improve services and support for inmates after they are released from prison. IPSSJ has been providing expertise on organizing stakeholders and developing a community-based, participatory strategic plan. This has also included a needs assessment and examination of citywide policies, procedures, and practices. As the Racine plan is published and implementation begins, IPSSJ will be assisting in the evaluation of the entire process, paying particular attention to recidivism outcomes over the long-term.
St. Leonard’s Ministries Program Review
The Adler University has contracted to provide mental health services to the men and women that reside at half way houses run by St. Leonard’s Ministries on Chicago’s Westside. The current endeavor is a full program review of all of the psychological services provided to St. Leonard’s House by Adler. Currently an evaluation is being designed to track key indicators of program effect. This will allow Adler to redesign the program as necessary, and to manualize both a program and the training that corresponds with this program. This can then be marketed to other agencies and halfway houses that serve the mental health needs of the formerly incarcerated.
The Violence Prevention Seminar Series
This series provides weekly programming to up to 60 juvenile detainees on a weekly basis. It is a collaboration with CeaseFire outreach program. This program is designed by Elena Quintana, Ph.D. Topics include manhood development, confronting violence, changing violent thinking and behavior, adolescent brain development, and the fallout of the “no snitching” campaign.
The Adler Volunteer Visitors Program
This is a new program that has just begun. It allows trained individuals to enter the detention center and visit with teen detainees who have not had any visitors in the time they’ve been locked up. Approximately 1 in 6 Juvenile Temporary Detention Center residents qualifies, and some have had no visitors for months at a time. These individuals are responsible for a larger percentage of unsafe acting out, and feelings of anger and abandonment.
International RJ Research Endeavor
The Adler University will engage both the Chicago and Vancouver campuses in research as to how Restorative Justice practices have been implemented in courts, schools, and society at large. An international comparison can be made, along with outcome measures, and recommendations. A white paper on this endeavor will be produced.