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Risk Assessment in Juvenile Probation: Contributions of Mental Health and Substance Abuse to Case Planning and Reoffending

Award Information

Award #
2014-JF-FX-0001
Location
Congressional District
Status
Closed
Funding First Awarded
2014
Total funding (to date)
$250,000
Original Solicitation

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2014, $125,000)

This program furthers the Department's mission by providing grants and cooperative agreements for research and evaluation activities to organizations that OJJDP designates.

This program furthers the Department's mission by providing grants and cooperative agreements for research and evaluation activities to organizations that OJJDP designates. This project is an application for a second round of funding under OJJDP's Research Awards as part of a partnership with the MacArthur Foundation's Models for Change (MfC) initiative. In the first round, the applicant examined whether out-of-home placement and maximum levels of supervision for juvenile offenders were reduced, and services were reallocated, when juvenile probation agencies employed risk assessment methods and decision-making processes that were consistent with Risk-Need-Responsivity (RNR) principles. To accomplish this, the applicant assisted two juvenile probation agencies in two states to implement those principles, involving (a) adoption and use of a validated risk/needs assessment tool and a mental health screening tool and (b) implementation of a decision-making model for case planning that integrated criminogenic needs and risk level. The probation offices were compared to control probation offices that did not implement risk assessment. The study was a follow-up to the Risk/Needs in Juvenile Probation: Implementation Study funded by MacArthur. The present "second round" proposal capitalizes on lessons learned from both of these studies, testing a service matrix and case planning model that teaches probation officers how to integrate mental health, substance abuse, and criminogenic risk factors into case planning. The study employs a pre-post, quasi-experimental design that implements risk assessment, mental health screening (MAYSI-2) and substance abuse screening (CRAFFT) in selected juvenile probation offices in two new states (two offices per state). This study will examine some of the same questions as the "first round" proposal while focusing more attention on areas that continue to be the most challenging for implementation of the RNR model systems capacities and RNR-related case planning that integrates mental health (MH). Sophisticated analyses will be conducted to examine whether attention to MH and SA moderates the association between dynamic risk and reoffending, and whether changes in MH, SA, and risk differentially impact recidivism. Other outcomes investigated will include whether implementation of risk assessment and screening and RNR case planning leads to changes in the way youth are handled (e.g., out-of-home placement rates, supervision levels) without jeopardizing public safety.

NCA/NCF

This program furthers the Department's mission by providing grants and cooperative agreements for research and evaluation activities to organizations that OJJDP designates.

This project is an application for a second round of funding under OJJDP's Research Awards as part of a partnership with the MacArthur Foundation's Models for Change (MfC) initiative. In the first round, the applicant examined whether out-of-home placement and maximum levels of supervision for juvenile offenders were reduced, and services were reallocated, when juvenile probation agencies employed risk assessment methods and decision-making processes that were consistent with Risk-Need-Responsivity (RNR) principles. To accomplish this, the applicant assisted two juvenile probation agencies in two states to implement those principles, involving (a) adoption and use of a validated risk/needs assessment tool and a mental health screening tool and (b) implementation of a decision-making model for case planning that integrated criminogenic needs and risk level. The probation offices were compared to control probation offices that did not implement risk assessment. The study was a follow-up to the Risk/Needs in Juvenile Probation: Implementation Study funded by MacArthur. The present "second round" proposal capitalizes on lessons learned from both of these studies, testing a service matrix and case planning model that teaches probation officers how to integrate mental health, substance abuse, and criminogenic risk factors into case planning. The study employs a pre-post, quasi-experimental design that implements risk assessment, mental health screening (MAYSI-2) and substance abuse screening (CRAFFT) in selected juvenile probation offices in two new states (two offices per state). This study will examine some of the same questions as the "first round" proposal while focusing more attention on areas that continue to be the most challenging for implementation of the RNR model systems capacities and RNR-related case planning that integrates mental health (MH). Sophisticated analyses will be conducted to examine whether attention to MH and SA moderates the association between dynamic risk and reoffending, and whether changes in MH, SA, and risk differentially impact recidivism. Other outcomes investigated will include whether implementation of risk assessment and screening and RNR case planning leads to changes in the way youth are handled (e.g., out-of-home placement rates, supervision levels) without jeopardizing public safety.

NCA/NCF

Date Created: September 16, 2014