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NCJ Number: 69232 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: TRAINING PRISON INMATES AS PARALEGALS - AN EXPERIMENTAL PROJECT
Journal: JOURNAL OF CRIMINAL JUSTICE  Volume:8  Issue:1  Dated:(1980)  Pages:27-38
Author(s): J G EMSHOFF; W S DAVIDSON; R F CONNER
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 12
Sponsoring Agency: American Bar Assoc (Basics)
Washington, DC 20036
US Dept of Health, Education, and Welfare
Washington, DC 20203
Grant Number: MH29160
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE EFFECTIVENESS OF AN EXPERIMENTAL PROJECT TO TRAIN INMATES AS PARALEGALS AT A LARGE STATE PRISON IN THE MIDWEST IS EVALUATED.
Abstract: THE PROGRAM WAS INTENDED TO PROVIDE BETTER PRISONER ACCESS TO LEGAL ASSISTANCE GEARED TO THEIR PROBLEMS AND MENTALITY. TRAINING CONSISTED OF AN 8-MONTH COURSE IN INTERVIEWING, RESEARCH TECHNIQUES, AND DOCUMENT PREPARATION ADMINISTERED BY THE STATE BAR ASSOCIATION. TWENTY INMATES WERE SELECTED FOR INTEREST, ABILITY, MOTIVATION, AND STABILITY AND PLACED IN EXPERIMENTAL AND CONTROL GROUPS OF 10 SUBJECTS EACH; ALL PARTICIPANTS WERE TESTED BEFORE AND AFTER TRAINING. ONE HUNDRED INMATES WERE ALSO INTERVIEWED TO ASSESS THE EFFECTS OF THE PROGRAM ON THE PRISON. FINDINGS INDICATE THAT THE TRAINING GROUP, REGARDLESS OF INITIAL LEVEL, INCREASED ITS KNOWLEDGE, BUT DID NOT CHANGE IN BASIC ATTITUDES, THAT TRAINEES EVALUATED DECISION ALTERNATIVES MORE LOGICALLY AND MORE CAREFULLY THAN CONTROLS, AND THAT THE NUMBER OF REQUESTS FOR LEGAL AID FROM TRAINEEES WAS SIGNIFICANTLY HIGHER THAN FOR CONTROLS. ACCORDING TO INTERVIEW RESULTS, INMATE CONTACT WITH TRAINEES HAD RAISED THE LEVEL OF AWARENESS OF THE PROGRAM, AND INMATES VIEWED THE PROGRAM VERY POSITIVELY, SO POSITIVELY THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN WILLING TO PAY A FEE TO JOIN. WHILE THE PROGRAM THUS PROVED A VALUABLE POTENTIAL VEHICLE FOR PROTECTION OF INMATES' RIGHTS, SHORT-TERM EFFECTS VARIABLES SUCH AS INMATES' ATTITUDES REMAINED MINIMAL. THE LIMITED DATA AVAILABLE ON LONG-TERM EFFECTS SUGGEST THAT TRAINEES WERE ADEQUATELY PREPARED TO ENTER THE PARALEGAL PROFESSION AFTER RELEASE, BUT CONTINUED RESEARCH ON LONG-TERM EFFECTS IS NEEDED. NOTES, TABLES, GRAPHS, AND 21 REFERENCES ARE SUPPLIED.
Index Term(s): Inmate Programs; Mid-Western States; Paralegals; Program evaluation
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=69232

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