OJP’s support for state, local and tribal organizations is a critical part of our mission. And for many years, OJP bureaus, to include NIJ, OJJDP, BJA and OVC have had long-established working relationships with philanthropic and non-profit organizations that work on closely related criminal justice and juvenile justice issues. Recently we have added a new dimension to these efforts through proactive engagement with philanthropic and non-profit organizations. We conferred with a number of foundations and philanthropies about how OJP can work more effectively with private sector groups that share similar goals, and how to use creative collaborative approaches to criminal and juvenile justice matters.
Partnering with these institutions makes sense for OJP and better harnesses the power of private organizations to maximize our collective resources to improve our communities. For example, the MacArthur Foundation and OJP jointly awarded $2 million to support juvenile justice reforms. We’ve also partnered with the Atlantic Philanthropies, MacArthur, and others on a school discipline initiative. In a joint effort with the Department of Education, we’re working to promote policies and practices that aim to reduce the number of children involved in the juvenile and adult court systems and help them succeed in school. The Pew Charitable Trusts have been a leader in advancing our Justice Reinvestment efforts. We’re now working together to support efforts in 32 sites, with more to come. And our partners at Casey Family Programs have helped guide our efforts under the National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention. Additionally, we have created the Partnership Resource Network to provide external support for highly-rated unfunded applicants for OJP grant programs.
To ensure that these associations operate under the highest standards of ethical practice, OJP has developed basic standards of practice to guide our engagement with philanthropies, foundations, and other private organizations. They state, in part, that OJP will remain an impartial agency; it will maintain a clear distinction between DOJ’s role and that of non-federal agencies; and it will maintain transparency, ensuring that all information shared is made publicly available. OJP will give no preferential treatment to its partners and at all times, will maintain clear separation between federal and non-federal duties and funds for joint projects.
With these new efforts OJP has taken a big step toward increasing our work with private sector groups and maximizing the resources available to communities throughout the U.S. to address issues in criminal and juvenile justice and to promote public safety.