U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs. Innovation. Partnerships. Safer Neighborhoods.
Justice Resource Update. Advancing the Field of Criminal Justice. FEBRUARY 2011
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Budget Update: Balancing Demands, Protecting Communities

Department of Justice Seal.In preparing to handle the ongoing economic challenges we face as a nation, the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) is working hard to consider your most pressing needs first. While planning for the remainder of fiscal year (FY) 2011 and FY 2012, we will continue to prioritize programs with the greatest impact on public safety in communities throughout the country.

For FY 2011, we continue to operate under a continuing resolution that is set to expire on March 4, 2011. Congress is working on the FY 2011 appropriations, and we remain hopeful that it will enact appropriations that support the Administration’s priorities.

Meanwhile, the President’s FY 2012 Budget Request contains $3 billion for OJP, including $1.9 billion in discretionary funds. While this budget features difficult cuts, it also maintains funding for essential programs and proposes targeted increases in priority areas. For example, under this request, the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) program will continue to be funded at the FY 2010 enacted level of $519 million. JAG funds give state and local jurisdictions the flexibility to address the most pressing needs in their communities, and we made hard choices to maintain this funding. We’re also excited to be introducing a new juvenile justice program following the "Race-to-the-Top" model that will provide incentives for states to take the next steps in improving juvenile justice. The budget includes $120 million for this new initiative.

Of course, these and all the programs outlined in the President’s FY 2012 Budget Request are dependent on congressional appropriations. As always, we will provide information to all of our stakeholders as soon as it is available.

We are fully aware that budget decisions in Washington directly influence programming decisions throughout the country, and we are committed to supporting your communities in every way we can. If you have questions or comments, please contact us.

Bullet Budget Update: Balancing Demands, Protecting Communities
Bullet Transforming Victim Services
Bullet Addressing Sexual Victimization in Prisons and Jails
Bullet New Perspectives on Policing Publications Available
Bullet Trafficking Task Force E-Guide Released
Bullet New Journal of Juvenile Justice
Bullet Workshop on Indigent Defense
Bullet OJJDP Proposed Program Plan
Bullet SMART Office Activities
Bullet Research for the Real World Seminar Available
Bullet Science Advisory Board Convenes
Bullet OJP Leadership Speaks Out Against Scared Straight Programs
Bullet Mark Your Calendar
Transforming Victim Services

To chart a course for the future of the victim services field in the United States, the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC) launched the Vision 21: Transforming Victim Services initiative. The overarching goal of the initiative, formerly known as HOPE III, is to expand the vision and impact of the crime victim services field. To facilitate this goal, five organizations will collectively undertake a comprehensive analysis of the current state of the field.

Based on literature reviews, forum discussions, and other modes of information gathering, four of the organizations will develop thematic reports addressing specific issue areas. The issues include the role of the crime victims field in the overall response to crime and delinquency in the U.S.; building capacity in the crime victims field to better serve victims of crime; enduring challenges in the crime victims field that still are being addressed; and emerging challenges the crime victims field has yet to address.

The fifth organization will analyze the information from the four reports and develop a final synthesis document, which will provide a cohesive and comprehensive assessment of the current state of the victim services field in the United States, a set of recommendations, and a blueprint for a national demonstration project (or multiple demonstration projects) to implement those recommendations.

Literature reviews and stakeholder forums will be completed in the next several months. The final synthesis document is expected to be launched in March 2012. Visit the Vision 21 Web site periodically for updated information on progress related to the initiative.

Addressing Sexual Victimization in Prisons and Jails

A proposed rule issued by the Department of Justice (DOJ) on January 24, 2011, includes standards to prevent sexual abuse and reduce the harm it causes when it occurs in adult prisons and jails, juvenile facilities, lockups, and community confinement facilities.

The proposed rule outlines minimum standards for correctional agencies, addressing areas ranging from staff background checks and inmate screening to access to victim services and legal redress. The complete rule is available online. Comments are being accepted through April 4, 2011, and can be submitted electronically at www.regulations.gov.

"The Department of Justice’s goal is to eliminate these acts of violence by taking deliberative and concrete steps to ensure the health and safety of prisoners," Attorney General Eric Holder said of the proposed rule. He also noted that the standards are consistent with the requirements of the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA).

Among other requirements, PREA calls on the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) to collect data on the incidence of sexual victimization in prison and jails. According to Sexual Victimization Reported by Adult Correctional Authorities, 2007-2008, more than 14,800 allegations of sexual victimization occurred in prisons and jails during 2007 and 2008. Of these cases, 1,932 were substantiated following an investigation. More than half of all substantiated incidents were perpetrated by another inmate, and more than fifty percent of these incidents involved nonconsensual sexual acts. The full report is available online.

New Perspectives on Policing Publications Available

The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) has released two complementary papers in the New Perspectives on Policing series from the Harvard Executive Sessions on Policing and Public Safety. The papers on policing and public safety present very different views on the integration of evidence-based practices.

In Police Science: Toward a New Paradigm, David Weisburd and Peter Neyroud argue that law enforcement agencies must take ownership of police science and become less hesitant to adopt evidence-based policies and practices. In Governing Science, Malcolm Sparrow contends that the social science methods that lead to evidence-based practices are fundamentally incompatible with the operational realities of problem-oriented policing.

The Harvard Executive Sessions serve as a forum for examining potential solutions that will help practitioners succeed in the ever-changing policing environment.

Trafficking Task Force E-Guide Released

The recently released Anti-Human Trafficking Task Force Strategy and Operations E-Guide provides direction on the development and initial formation of task forces, as well as ideas for task force revitalization and restructuring. Released jointly by OVC and the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), the guide includes creative strategies, practical examples, and lessons learned from the anti-trafficking field. It also serves as a centralized source for links to tools, trainings, and resources. This electronic publication is useful for both federally and non-federally funded task forces.

The e-Guide is a dynamic resource, and its public release is a first step in the development of a more comprehensive tool that will ultimately address all forms of human trafficking.

New Journal of Juvenile Justice

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) will launch its new online, peer-reviewed journal, the Journal of Juvenile Justice, at the annual meeting of the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, which will be held March 1–5, 2011, in Toronto, Canada. Authors are invited to submit manuscripts for consideration for publication in the first two issues of the journal, scheduled for release in late 2011.

Proposed articles may address a broad range of juvenile justice-related issues, such as delinquency prevention, intervention and treatment, and juvenile victimization. Readers are anticipated to include researchers, clinicians, practitioners, administrators, policy analysts, educators, and students.

To access instructions for authors and other relevant information, visit mc.manuscriptcentral.com/jojj/. Send questions to Monica Robbers, Ph.D., Managing Editor, Journal of Juvenile Justice, at mrobbers@csrincorporated.com.

Workshop on Indigent Defense

The large number of poor criminal defendants coupled with the critical shortage of resources for indigent defense has led to a crisis in America’s indigent defense system. To address this fundamental barrier to justice, DOJ’s Access to Justice Initiative and NIJ’s International Center sponsored a workshop designed to identify domestic and international best practices and develop a robust research agenda.

The January 2011 workshop, "International Perspectives on Indigent Defense: A Workshop to Discuss Alternative Practices and Research," featured panelists from around the world and culminated in participants prioritizing specific measures aimed at improving indigent defense in the United States. A report covering workshop findings will be issued in mid-2011 and will inform DOJ’s priorities and research agenda.

OJJDP Proposed Program Plan

OJJDP published a notice of its Proposed Plan for Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 in the January 12, 2011, Federal Register. The proposed plan describes discretionary program activities that OJJDP anticipates carrying out during FY 2011.

After taking into consideration comments received and its final FY 2011 appropriation, OJJDP will develop a Final Plan describing program activities that the Office intends to fund during FY 2011. The Final Plan will be published in the Federal Register.

Comments on the Proposed Plan must be received by February 28, 2011, and may be submitted online or mailed to OJJDP. Online submission of comments is recommended.

SMART Office Activities

In January, OJP’s Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART) hosted the National Workshop on the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA), Title I of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006. The Workshop was designed to further assist jurisdictions in their efforts to implement SORNA before the final deadline of July 27, 2011.

In conjunction with the workshop, DOJ released Supplemental Guidelines for SORNA. The SORNA Supplemental Guidelines address, among other things, public notification of juveniles adjudicated delinquent for serious sex crimes, the posting of sex offender information (such as email addresses and other Internet identifiers), and reporting of international travel requirements. Other issues addressed in the Supplemental Guidelines include on-going review of SORNA implementation, the sharing of information across jurisdictions, and the application of SORNA to new federally recognized Indian tribes.

The U.S. Territory of Guam was the most recent jurisdiction to substantially implement SORNA. Guam joins the States of Ohio, Delaware, South Dakota, and Florida, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, and the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation as jurisdictions that have substantially implemented SORNA.

Research for the Real World Seminar Available

NIJ has posted the recorded seminar "Mothers and Children Seeking Safety in the U.S.: A Study of International Child Abduction Cases Involving Domestic Violence." This seminar, part of NIJ’s Research for the Real World series, includes presentations by Dr. Jeffrey Edleson, University of Minnesota; Dr. Taryn Lindhorst, University of Washington; and Ms. Sudha Shetty, University of Minnesota.

Science Advisory Board Convenes

OJP’s newly created Science Advisory Board convened in Washington on January 28, 2011. Created last year, the Board is charged with providing OJP with guidance and recommendations for research, statistics, and grant programs—ensuring programs and activities are scientifically sound and pertinent to policymakers and practitioners.

"The Science Advisory Board will play a critical role in institutionalizing the protection of science at the Department of Justice," said Laurie O. Robinson, OJP’s Assistant Attorney General. "The Board’s members will provide valuable input and guidance to ensure adherence to the highest levels of scientific rigor, while serving as a bridge between research and practice in the criminal justice fields."

OJP Leadership Speaks Out Against Scared Straight Programs

In an op-ed in the Baltimore Sun, OJP’s Assistant Attorney General Laurie O. Robinson and OJJDP’s Acting Administrator Jeff Slowikowski discussed how the use of scared straight programs to prevent delinquency is ineffective and can harm youth.

Robinson and Slowikowski commented on a comparative analysis by Anthony Petrosino and researchers at the Campbell Collaboration, which analyzed results from nine scared straight programs and found that participants were up to 28 percent more likely to offend in the future. As a result of such evidence, DOJ does not support scared straight-style programs, and instead focuses on programs that research has proven effective, such as mentoring programs, which use positive relationships to modify youth’s behavior.

The full article is available online.


Teen Dating Violence Month

February is Teen Dating Violence Prevention and Awareness Month. This annual observance is an opportunity to combat the dangerous repercussions of teen dating violence for young people, their families, and their communities. More information on resources for victims and teen dating violence research is available online.

Supporting Crime Victims with Disabilities

On March 29–31, 2011, in Kansas City, Missouri, the OVC Training and Technical Assistance Center will host training on supporting crime victims with disabilities. Topics will include applicable laws and reporting requirements, as well as communication challenges and multidisciplinary collaboration. Registration is open and available online.

International Family Justice Center Conference

The Family Justice Center Alliance will host the 11th Annual International Family Justice Center Conference April 5–7, 2011 in San Diego, California. This conference will feature discussions of issues related to handling domestic violence, child abuse, sexual assault, elder abuse, and stalking cases using a Family Justice Center model. Online registration is available.

National Crime Victims’ Rights Week

On April 7, 2011, OVC will kick off National Crime Victims’ Rights Week (NCVRW) with an Observance and Candlelight Ceremony in Washington, D.C. The event will be followed by the National Crime Victims’ Service Awards Ceremony on April 8, 2011. NCVRW will be observed nationwide April 10–16, 2011. The theme for this year’s event is "Reshaping the Future, Honoring the Past." Additional information is available online. To receive e-mail updates on events and resource materials, please join the mailing list.

Crime Mapping Research Conference

On April 13–15, 2011, NIJ will host the 11th Crime Mapping Research Conference in Miami, Florida. Pre-conference workshops will be held April 11–12. This event will showcase a range of research findings, practical applications, technology demonstrations, and policy results. Online registration is now open.

National Gang Symposium

The 2011 National Gang Symposium, "Progress Through Partnerships," will take place June 7–10, 2011, in Orlando, Florida. OJJDP, BJA, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, and the National Gang Center will sponsor the conference, which will focus on successful gang-related programs and gang reduction strategies. Additional information and registration details are available online.

NIJ Conference

On June 20–22, 2011, NIJ will host its annual conference in Arlington, Virginia. For more than a decade, the NIJ conference has brought together criminal justice scholars, policymakers, and practitioners at the local, state, and federal levels to share the most recent findings from research and technology. Registration is free and available online.

Financial Management Training Seminars

OJP‘s Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO) offers 2-day financial management training seminars throughout the country for individuals responsible for the financial administration of discretionary or formula grants.

Registration is currently open for several seminars in 2011. The full list of 2011 trainings is available online.

Funding Opportunities

OJP’s Web site includes a complete listing of all open solicitations. Just click on Funding at the top of the site to review all funding opportunities. Don’t forget to check the Web site regularly for updates.

Contact Us

If you have questions, comments, or feedback, please contact OJP’s Office of Communications. To register to receive Justice Resource Update in your inbox, please visit www.ncjrs.gov.

Justice Resource Update is designed to help criminal justice practitioners stay informed and better serve their constituents by providing valuable information about federal resources, advancements in the field, and training opportunities. We strive to provide information you can use, and we welcome your input.

E-mail: AskOJP
Web site: www.ojp.gov
Phone: 202-307-0703