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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 51979 Find in a Library
Title: LEGAL DELIVERY SYSTEMS TO PRISONERS - A PRELIMINARY EVALUATION
Journal: JUSTICE SYSTEM JOURNAL  Volume:4  Issue:1  Dated:(FALL 1978)  Pages:9-25
Author(s): G P ALPERT; N MILLER
Corporate Author: Institute for Court Management
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 17
Sponsoring Agency: Institute for Court Management
Denver, CO 80202
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A VARIETY OF SYSTEMS TO PROVIDE INMATES LEGAL ACCESS TO THE COURTS ARE DISCUSSED, AND THE WASHINGTON LEGAL SERVICES TO PRISONERS PROJECT IS DESCRIBED AND EVALUATED.
Abstract: AN AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION REPORT SUGGESTS THE FOLLOWING WAYS TO DELIVER LEGAL SERVICES TO PRISONERS: (1) USING LAW STUDENTS AS LEGAL COUNSELORS; (2) JAILHOUSE LAWYERS (INMATES SELF-TAUGHT IN LAW OR TRAINED AS PARALEGALS) SERVING AS LEGAL COUNSELORS FOR FELLOW INMATES; (3) RESIDENT ATTORNEYS EMPLOYED BY THE STATE; AND (4) EXPANDING THE OFFICE OF PUBLIC DEFENDER TO SERVE PRISONERS. BRIEF DESCRIPTIONS AND EVALUATIONS ARE PROVIDED FOR THESE ALTERNATIVES. IT IS CONCLUDED TENTATIVELY THAT THE PROGRAMS STAFFED BY RESIDENT COUNSELS PROVIDE THE MOST EFFECTIVE AND EFFICIENT INMATE ACCESS TO THE COURTS. ONE PROGRAM OF THIS TYPE, THE WASHINGTON LEGAL SERVICES TO PRISONERS PROJECT, IS CONSIDERED A GOOD EXAMPLE, AND DATA ON AN EVALUATION OF THIS PROJECT ARE REPORTED. THE PROGRAM PROVIDES LEGAL SERVICES TO INMATES IN THE FOUR MAJOR CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTIONS AND THE TWO HONOR CAMPS IN THE STATE OF WASHINGTON. THE PROJECT IS HEADED BY TWO ATTORNEYS--ONE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE BASIC PROJECT ADMINISTRATION AND THE OTHER RESPONSIBLE FOR SUPERVISING THE LEGAL WORK PROVIDED BY THE STAFF, CONSISTING OF FOUR ATTORNEYS, THREE PARALEGALS, AND A SUPPORTIVE SECRETARIAL PERSON. THE STAFF PROVIDES CIVIL LEGAL ASSISTANCE TO INMATES AND THEIR FAMILIES. INFORMALLY, THE STAFF ALSO AIMS AT BRIDGING THE COMMUNICATION GAP BETWEEN INMATES AND CORRECTIONAL STAFF. INMATES ARE INFORMED OF THE PROGRAM AT ORIENTATION. ANY INDIGENT INMATE MAY REQUEST AN INTERVIEW WITH A STAFF MEMBER, AND ADVICE IS PROVIDED ON LEGAL MATTERS. WHERE APPROPRIATE, LEGAL ACTION IS PURSUED. AFTER THE FIRST 6 MONTHS OF OPERATION, PROGRAM SUCCESS WAS MEASURED ON THE BASIS OF OUTCOMES OF REQUESTS AND SATISFACTION OF CLIENTS. DATA TENTATIVELY SUGGEST THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE PROJECT; 80 PERCENT OF 91 CASES GAINED RELIEF AND SATISFACTION WAS INDICATED BY WELL OVER HALF OF THE CLIENTS SERVED. DATA FROM THE EVALUATION ARE PROVIDED. (RCB)
Index Term(s): Inmate Programs; Legal aid services; Program evaluation; Washington
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=51979

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