Priority Criminal Justice Needs Initiative
Aug 18, 2014
Correctional staff must protect the public from those convicted of crimes and prepare convicted people for successful, law-abiding lives in the community through the reentry process. It is thus critically important for the corrections sector to develop a high-quality workforce. This report presents the results of an expert panel discussion focused on identifying and prioritizing ways to address workforce concerns in the corrections sector.
Identifying Challenges and Needs
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The U.S. corrections sector is a critical component of the criminal justice system, charged with managing offenders and defendants confined in prison or jails, as well as those released into the community on probation and parole. Correctional staff, both within institutions and in the community, must protect the public from individuals accused or convicted of crimes, some of whom are dangerous. However, staff must also prepare those under correctional control for successful, law-abiding lives in the community and support these individuals through the reentry process. The larger public safety mission, therefore, is accomplished not only by separating and monitoring these individuals but also through interpersonal contact, positive relationships, and support of the behavioral change process toward a crime-free life. It is thus critically important for the corrections sector to develop a high-quality workforce.
This report presents the results of an expert panel discussion focused on identifying and prioritizing ways to address workforce concerns in the corrections sector. Panelists identified needs related to recruitment, selection, onboarding, retention, leadership development, and misconduct that, if addressed, would help to build a high-quality workforce.
The research described in this report was conducted by the Justice Policy Program within RAND Justice, Infrastructure, and Environment.
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