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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 91056 Find in a Library
Title: Supervising Offenders Outside of Prison (From Crime and Public Policy, P 207-227, 1983, James Q Wilson, ed. - See NCJ-91045)
Author(s): D Glaser
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 21
Sponsoring Agency: ICS Press
Oakland, CA 94612
Sale Source: ICS Press
Institute for Contemporary Studies
1611 Telegraph Ave., Suite 406
Oakland, CA 94612
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Several measures would reduce recidivism among offenders who are on probation or parole, which is the disposition for most persons found guilty of offenses in the United States.
Abstract: Probation and parole themselves reduce recidivism rates among new offenders by preventing the criminalizing effects of their incarceration. A substantial confinement period reduces recidivism by more hardened offenders by special deterrence as well as by incapacitation. Close monitoring in the community, including surprise drug tests for ex-addicts, reduces rearrest rates among advanced offenders. A marked reduction in the frequency of contact with supervision staff does not increase the failure rates among those classified as of low risk or need. Halfway houses and work release make supervision in the community quite effective. Actuarial prediction tables permit the placement of larger numbers of prisoners into community living without increasing escape rates. Halfway houses succeed best with young offenders when they provide much job retention counseling as well as other aid and close control. Counseling seems to reduce recidivism rates only for unskilled offenders and only if provided in an optimum manner. Reducing supervision caseloads without restructuring the jobs of probation officers does not affect recidivism rates. Other desirable practices are the use of paraprofessional staff of sociocultural background similar to that of the clients, employment training focusing on work habits and attitudes, and financial aid which does not provide a disincentive to work. More research is needed on guidelines, which can improve the consistent rationality of sentencing and parole decisions.
Index Term(s): Probation evaluation; Probation or parole services; Probation outcome prediction
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