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Community Context of Probation (From Probation and Justice, P 347-368, 1984, Patrick D McAnany et al, ed. - See NCJ-97157)

NCJ Number
D E Duffee
Date Published
22 pages
Although many changes in probation practice can be made without regard for the nature of the community in which probation operates, the external environment exercises constraints that must be accommodated in all activities, from policymaking to daily supervision.
Roland Warren has defined community in terms of the arrangements of the following functions: production, distribution, and consumption; socialization; social control; social participation; and mutual support. Warren also suggests four separate dimensions upon which communities may differ: local autonomy, correspondence or divergence in local services or functional delivery areas, strength of psychological identification with the local area, and strength of horizontal articulation or integration across functional units. Autonomy and horizontal articulation are the most crucial dimensions in considering a community's effects on probation. Using these dimensions, four types of communities can be defined: disorganized communities, solidary communities, fragmented communities, and interdependent communities. The four types of probation likely to correspond to these types of community structure are discussed. The two main contributions of community theory to the formulation of a probation mission are the recognition that probation is not and will not be the same everywhere and the recognition that some changes in probation, even if internally generated, will have external effects. Thirty-eight references are supplied.