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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 69645 Find in a Library
Title: Goal Conflicts and Criminal Justice Innovation - A Case Study
Journal: Justice System Journal  Volume:5  Issue:3  Dated:(Spring 1980)  Pages:291-298
Author(s): A T Harland
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 8
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: A project for the evaluation of LEAA-funded adult restitution programs in ten States is described to illustrate the harmful effects of ignoring political interest groups in formulating project objectives.
Abstract: An examination of the various restitution responses to criminal behavior notes that the most frequently employed sanctions for offenders in the State restitution program being evaluated are financial restitution and, to a lesser extent, community service. However, some objectives overlap or conflict, as shown in the following three purposes frequently given for implementing a restitution and community service program: (1) to benefit the offender, (2) to benefit the victim or the community, and (3) to benefit the criminal justice system. The operations of the Minnesota Restitution Center are described to illustrate the difficulties encountered by restitution proponents. These difficulties resulted either because the basis for their support did not match other interest groups' motives for pursuing restitution, or because their restitution goals did not coincide with more general operating goals and procedures of agencies in the criminal justice system. Further instances of strategic or political manipulation of the restitution concept for ulterior purposes are cited form the Iowa, Georgia, and California projects. The establishment of diversionary residential programs and the assignment of program participants to community service work are two means by which restitution concept was manipulated without reference to crime victim restitution. It is concluded that, if potential competing interests among the advocates of restitution are not accommodated in the early stages of project planning, the exacerbation of difference may lead to failure when the restitution project is implemented. Footnotes are provided.
Index Term(s): Law Enforcement Assistance Administration (LEAA); Minnesota; Restitution programs
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