Justice Reinvestment Initiative Implementation: Assessment, Case Planning & Offender Accountability

Message to Staff: June 4, 2019

Dear Corrections Team:

When it comes to changing the mindsets and behaviors of people involved in the criminal justice system, we know that a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work. That’s why we’re changing the way we do business. In order to get the best results — to send people back out into the community better than they were when they came to us — we need to tailor our approach to the particular needs and strengths of each offender. The Justice Reinvestment Initiative (JRI) will help us get there.

Back in January, we provided plans and timelines for implementation of JRI programs, procedures and tools. (Review the video message to staff or the staff newsletter.) We’re moving forward on this timeline, and I want to give you an update. JRI involves a lot of change, so let’s break it down, starting with what you need to do now and what’s coming next.

Right now we’re focusing on three things:

  1. Assessment
  2. Case Planning
  3. Offender Accountability Procedures

Assessment

Implementation of our new risk and needs assessment tool, the Ohio Risk Assessment System (ORAS), started June 1. This validated instrument helps us to identify factors that drive a person toward negative or criminal behaviors and also to determine each person’s risk of reoffending. The valuable information collected can help ensure that we invest proportionate attention and appropriate resources in the moderate-risk and high-risk offenders who need them the most. The ORAS is being adopted department-wide to assess offenders, target interventions and inform responses to behavior. It helps us tailor the work we do to improve each Missourian’s life.

Training:

  • Division of Adult Institutions (DAI) case managers, functional unit managers and assistant wardens, as well as Probation & Parole (P&P) officers, unit supervisors and district administrators, completed ORAS training between May 2018 and April 2019.
  • The next ORAS training sessions will be held June 3-6 at all training centers.

Case Planning

The new case planning model started June 1. Based on ORAS assessment results, the case plan is a collaborative partnership between the offender/client and corrections staff — and may include treatment providers and family members when appropriate. Certified ORAS users will be able to create case plans, and each case plan can be customized to capture goals, objectives, incentives and sanctions at all points of a client’s time with the department, both in facilities and in the community. Goals should be tied to criminogenic needs, and objectives should follow the SMART principle (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely). ORAS user guides, fact sheets and other documents are available to staff on the K drive in the Case Management folder, organized into sub-folders for the Division of Adult Institutions (DAI) and Probation & Parole (P&P).

Training:

  • 300 DAI and P&P supervisors and 150 line staff (case managers and officers) have been trained in the new case planning model.
  • We currently are planning future sessions and training for trainers.

Offender Accountability Procedures

The new offender rulebook for adult institutions went into effect May 1. For Probation & Parole, changes to the Missouri Offender Management Matrix (MOMM) went into effect June 1. Both sets of tools are designed provide a system of incentives and sanctions to reinforce positive behaviors while holding offenders/clients accountable for negative behaviors. Please use the DAI and P&P incentive grids to help determine which desired behaviors should be rewarded, which incentives are appropriate, and what role each staff member plays. (Access the DAI Behavior Incentive Guide grid or the P&P MOMM grid.)

Training:

  • All P&P supervisors have been trained, and field officers are being trained through the end of May.
  • DAI is completing training on offender accountability at each facility.
  • MOMM will now be a part of new-P&P-officer training and will take place every quarter. The first session starts in June.

This is an exciting time to work in Corrections and introduce effective methods for improving lives for safer communities. We will keep you posted and update our website as other components of JRI go into effect.

Thank you for all you do.

Anne L. Precythe
Director