National Resource Center on Justice Involved Women Newsletter
The National Resource Center on Justice Involved Women (NRCJIW) provides guidance and support to justice professionals – and promotes evidence-based, gender-responsive policies and practices – to reduce the number and improve the outcomes of women involved in the criminal justice system.
Register by August 13 for NIC’s Workshop on Gender Responsive Discipline
In partnership with the National Institute of Corrections, the NRCJIW developed the Gender Responsive Discipline and Sanctions Policy Guide for Women’s Facilities to assist corrections professionals in assessing practices and creating gender responsive and trauma informed approaches to discipline and sanctions in women’s facilities. Most facility approaches to discipline are not gender responsive, lack attention to trauma which can undermine safety and security, and negatively impact women and staff. Discipline policies that were designed primarily for male populations may limit staff’s capacity to respond to misconduct by women in a meaningful way.
Through delivery of this workshop on September 13-16 at NIC’s Academy in Aurora, Colorado, participating teams will learn about the research and best practice that supports a gender responsive approach in the area of discipline and sanctions, discuss how current ACA Standards can be adapted to meet the needs of women inmates and women’s facilities, and review a process and approach for making changes and improvements to current discipline and sanctions for incarcerated women. Much of the workshop will allow teams time to analyze their current policies and practices and develop a detailed plan for revising discipline and sanctions policies and practices within their agency to better meet the needs of women.
The deadline for registration is fast approaching! Register your team by August 13, 2016! Read more and register here.
Now Available from NRCJIW!
The NRCJIW has added a number of new resources to its website in recent months, including a toolkit of communications materials, an updated fact sheet on justice involved women, and a summary of the process of pilot testing a pretrial needs assessment, the Inventory of Need (ION), in Dutchess County, New York.
To see all of the latest resources available from NRCJIW, visit http://cjinvolvedwomen.org/resources/
Communications Toolkit: Resources for Outreach and Educating Others on Justice Involved Women and Gender Responsive Approaches
The NRCJIW’s communications toolkit provides practitioners with information, resources and tools to help them communicate effectively with others regarding how to achieve better outcomes with women at all stages of the criminal justice system. The toolkit contains:
Infographic – A visual primer on some of the key issues that impact women in the justice system. The infographic can be shared in presentations and on social media, helping to engage and educate external audiences.
Slide Presentation – A Microsoft PowerPoint-based slide presentation that can be customized to increase understanding among key audiences (e.g., judiciary, corrections officials, and community supervision professionals) on issues pertinent to justice involved women.
Quick Tips – A resource designed to help professionals reflect on and improve how they respond to justice involved women.
Resource List – A list of the “must reads” or most seminal resources on justice involved women.
Video – A short video that offers an easy to follow narrative portraying the specific needs of women in the justice system, which can be shared on social media or used as part of in-person presentations.
The complete toolkit is available here.
Monograph, Building Gender Informed Practices at the Pretrial Stage: Lessons Learned about Implementing the Inventory of Needs (ION) in Dutchess County, New York
To date, gender responsive assessment tools have largely been validated for women who are sentenced or under criminal justice supervision. However, very little is known about the use of gender-informed assessments for women at the pretrial stage.
As early as 1999, Hamilton County (Cincinnati), Ohio, created a multidisciplinary policy team to study the circumstances of women defendants and to develop policies that would improve their chances to successfully complete pretrial supervision and sentencing conditions. In 2010, Hamilton County engaged in a project with the University of Cincinnati, and supported by the National Institute of Corrections (NIC), to draft a gender specific pretrial assessment tool, called the Inventory of Need (ION) Pretrial Screening Tool. The ION is a 70-item assessment instrument designed to gather information about defendants’ risk, needs, and strengths.
In 2013, the NRCJIW and NIC began working with the Dutchess County Office of Probation and Community Corrections (OPCC) in New York to develop a more robust pretrial process for women, which included the adoption of the ION, the incorporation of a gender responsive case management approach, and an increase in the offering of gender responsive services to women under pretrial supervision. This monograph provides an overview of the development of the ION in Hamilton County, Ohio, and describes Dutchess County, New York’s experiences and lessons learned while planning and implementing the ION in their jurisdiction.
Resource Brief, Fact Sheet on Justice Involved Women in 2016
This fact sheet provides the latest statistics on justice involved women, and how their experiences within and outside of the criminal justice system are markedly different from justice involved men regarding their offense types and use of violence, experiences with victimization and trauma, mental health, patterns of substance abuse, relationships, family roles, and economic marginalization.
Added to Our Resource Library: Reentry TIPSHEETS
The Women and Reentry Working group, a subcommittee of the Federal Interagency Reentry Council has produced a set of tools for use by corrections professionals designed to help correctional staff and other supportive stakeholders, while they work with women during the pre-release planning process and during reentry to address their needs as they transition to the community. These Reentry TIPSHEETS for Women, prepared by Coffey Consulting, include
- Career Exploration and Training Tipsheet: Discover Your Interests, Skills and Career Training Choices
- Education Tipsheet: Planning Now for Your Educational Needs
- Employment Tipsheet: Planning Now for Getting a Job
- Family Re-unification Tipsheet: Preparing Yourself to Return to Your Children
- Financial Literacy Tipsheet:
- Finding Housing Tipsheet: Finding a Safe Stable Place to Live
- Identification and Personal Records Tipsheet: Planning Now to Have Critical Documents and ID
- Mentoring Tipsheet: Mentor-A Coach to Help You Win at Life
- Physical Health Tipsheet: Leading a Healthy Lifestyle
- Self Empowerment and Self Esteem Tipsheet: Becoming the Woman You Want to Be
- Transportation Tipsheet: Getting Around Town
- Your Mental Health Tipsheet: Your Mental and Emotional Health
The TIPSHEETS cover each topic generally and provide links to national resources. They are intended to be used as handouts that professionals can use as part of ongoing reentry planning and pre-release discussions with clients. They should be paired with specific, on-the-ground resources that are available in the communities where each returning women lives.
The Reentry TIPSHEETS for Women can be downloaded here.