Sep 21, 2020
Justice Policy Publications
Publications from the RAND Justice Policy program cover topics related to public safety and the performance of the U.S. criminal justice system for federal law enforcement and other agencies, police departments, and other clients.
RAND Justice Policy also conducts research on topics related to civil justice through the RAND Institute of Civil Justice (ICJ).
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RAND Justice Policy publications are categorized in the following issue areas; some publications are cross-listed in multiple categories:
Browse Justice Policy Publications
California Wildfires: Can Insurance Markets Handle the Risk? September 14, 2020
This brief examines the health of the wildfire insurance market in two areas in northern and southern California and the projected wildfire risk in these areas through 2100.
Risk and Needs Assessments in Prisons: Identifying High-Priority Needs for Using Evidence-Based Practices September 9, 2020
Prison systems are highly complex, are often underresourced, and might lack the internal capacity to effectively implement evidence-based risk and needs assessments (RNAs) in their operations. Furthermore, it can be difficult to change institutional culture to accept an evidence-based approach in an environment in which custody objectives are paramount. A panel of experts identified ways to address and improve the use of RNA tools in prisons.
The Law Enforcement Response to Homelessness: Identifying High-Priority Needs to Improve Law Enforcement Strategies for Addressing Homelessness August 25, 2020
Police often are the first (and sometimes the only) point of government contact for persons experiencing homelessness (PEH). Police responses have shifted to approaches designed to foster positive relationships with PEH, help assess the individual needs of each person or area, and guide homeless or unsheltered individuals to the services they require. A panel of experts identified ways to address related challenges.
Exploring the Impact of COVID-19 on Social Services for Vulnerable Populations in Los Angeles: Lessons Learned from Community Providers August 24, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted social safety net programs on which both those at risk of or currently experiencing homelessness and those involved with the criminal justice system depend. The authors of this report conducted interviews with social services organizations in Los Angeles County to assess how service providers are responding to COVID-19 and to compile lessons learned from and innovative strategies for dealing with the pandemic.
Would Law Enforcement Leaders Support Defunding the Police? Probably — If Communities Ask Police to Solve Fewer Problems August 20, 2020
Police have expressed frustration with being expected to handle complex social problems, such as homelessness and substance use, that could be solved using nonenforcement strategies. In this Perspective, the authors describe police perspectives on defunding the police — i.e., budgeting less money for police and more for other public safety strategies — and explain why revisiting law enforcement's role in society could have broad appeal.
The Public Health Value of Opioid Litigation July 31, 2020
This article proceeds in three parts: discussions of the general goals and role of public health tort litigation, the demonstrated and potential value of opioid litigation to achieve public health goals, and a conclusion.
Autonomous Road Vehicles and Law Enforcement: Identifying High-Priority Needs for Law Enforcement Interactions With Autonomous Vehicles Within the Next Five Years July 16, 2020
Autonomous vehicles promise many benefits, but questions remain about how law enforcement officers will interact with them. Officers likely will encounter new challenges related to technology, procedures, and constitutional authority. A panel of experts identified ways to address these challenges.
Any institution-from workplaces to schools to correctional settings to law enforcement agencies-seeking to prevent suicide must take a comprehensive approach. Science suggests that there are five components that define what such an approach looks like.
How much taxpayer money is spent on police, courts, and legal services to respond to crime? RAND researchers provide estimated costs by crime type and by state in a new tool. The tool includes a map that allows users to visualize the differences in costs across the United States. Users can download parts of the data or the full data set in a variety of formats.
Toolkit for Weighting and Analysis of Nonequivalent Groups: A Tutorial on the TWANG Shiny App for Two Treatments June 30, 2020
This tutorial describes how to use a menu-driven Shiny app based on the Toolkit for Weighting and Analysis of Nonequivalent Groups (TWANG) R package. It can be used to estimate propensity score weights and related treatment effects for comparing two treatment groups when using observational data. The tutorial demonstrates use of the Shiny app through an illustrative example and explains key inputs and outputs of the TWANG Shiny app.