Community corrections play an essential role in managing paroles, pre-trials, and probation. Their primary goal is to ensure public safety through monitoring the progress of paroled inmates by assisting them to make better life choices and enroll in educational training programs and drug and mental rehabilitation centers. Additionally, community corrections keep track of the mentioned individuals’ progress, compile reports, and hand them to justice supervisors to ensure an easy transition of paroles into the society (Smith et al., 2016).
Effective case management involves nine steps and these include screening, collection of information and assessment, stratifying risks, planning and needs prioritization, allocation, development and resource negotiations, plan implementation, monitoring of the plan, and lastly evaluation and reassessment (Smith et al., 2016). Case managers follow these steps while carefully considering the client’s culture and needs, which enables them to understand and evaluate the available care options for them. Furthermore, managers have to establish goals that meet their expectations while applying all the relevant federal and state laws.
Probation and parole officers conduct risk/needs assessment by evidence-based practices to determine the offender’s approach to crime and examine their perception of society. Additionally, the probation officers use risk/needs assessment tools to gather information about the inmates, which is used by the justice officials to classify offenders accurately, suggest proper supervision parole models (Schaefer et al., 2018). The factors considered by the probation officers in risks/needs evaluation include the degree of risk of recidivism, cultural context of the parole, regulations on health standards, the budget for resources, and the possibility of reoffending. However, some factors such as clinical considerations are biased and lack subjectivity as important information may be overlooked while the trivial information may be overemphasized (Schaefer et al., 2018).
LSI-R and ORAS are tools used by probation officers to identify any existing risks and needs of offenders in regard to recidivism. Additionally, both tools give room to use other additional assessment tools without destroying the available data. However, the tools are dependent on the psychopathological factors of the offenders, overemphasize criminological characteristics, and have little consideration for recidivism (Schaefer et al., 2018).
Probation officers play a great role in assisting the court to sentence offenders fairly. Additionally, the probation officers have the right to arrest parolees or probationers and offer alternative sentencing options, especially when the individual breaks the rules. However, these professionals’ recommendations are mainly ceremonial and can be disputed in giving judicial decisions (Cassidy et al., 2018).
The community investigation role is vital in making a sound judgment on the best choice of sentencing and offering alternative sentencing. Additionally, supervision of the paroles supports in providing them with resources such as vocational training or access to rehabilitation centers to enable the offenders to become responsible members of the society. Pre-hearing investigations enable supervisors to give detailed reports to relevant authorities with file background information regarding paroles’ criminal history, family members, and health conditions (Cassidy et al., 2018).
Steps followed in investigating the offender help the court to make decisions regarding sentencing. Correctional departments may also use the information to select where to place the offender. Additionally, the report may be used as a reference for appropriate jail terms in the future. Before sentencing the offender, the court adjourns and grants the probation officers up to six weeks to investigate the offender and provide a report to the court. First, the probation team prepares the investigation process by following the regulation of the state or federal laws. Secondly, a review of records concerning the case at hand and additional information is obtained from the previous similar cases, correctional departments, and the offender’s history. Thirdly, the defendant, offender, and other people close to the offender are interviewed. The offender may also write a statement that may be considered by the probation team in its report. Lastly, the probation department writes a detailed report to the court and offers advice on the appropriate sentence (Smith et al., 2016).
Cassidy, R. M. (2018). Undue Influence: A Prosecutor’s Role in Parole Proceedings.
Schaefer, L., & Williams, G. C. (2018). The Impact of Probation and Parole Officers’ Attitudes about Offenders on Professional Practices. Corrections, 1-18.
Smith, S. W., Cornacchione, J. J., Morash, M., Kashy, D., & Cobbina, J. (2016). Communication style as an antecedent to reactance, self-efficacy, and restoration of freedom for drug-and alcohol-involved women on probation and parole. Journal of health communication, 21(5), 504-511.