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Nonresidential Community Supervision Programs Essay

526 words - 3 pages

Community-based corrections is a program that provides preventive services, services to offenders, services to persons charged with a crime or an act of delinquency, services to persons diverted from the criminal or delinquency process, services to persons sentenced to imprisonment, or services to victims of crime or delinquency, and is operated under a community corrections plan of a county and funded at least in part by the state subsidy. Intermediate sanctions are criminal sentences that fall between standard probation and incarceration. Intermediate sanctions can include house arrest, intensive probation (i.e., probation with more conditions beyond the basic conditions of standard probation), boot camps, electronic monitoring, and drug treatment programs. Intermediate sanctions serve a dual purpose in the criminal justice system. ...view middle of the document...

Intermediate sanctions can be an effective tool if used appropriately. Individuals who are actually interested in making positive changes in their lives can benefit from the additional support; in turn, society benefits from having potential threats to the health and safety of others transformed into productive citizens. Unfortunately, it is extremely difficult for judges to weed out the defendants who want to change and the defendants who are merely looking for a "get out of jail free" card. It seems, however, that the risk is worth the potential for reward, especially if judges reserve these intermediate sanctions for non-violent offenders who are less likely to injure others while out on release. After all, if they reoffend, defendants given the benefit of intermediate sanctions will most likely be facing a hefty jail sentence if they violate their probations, giving them an incentive to stay on the right path and giving the justice system recourse if they fail. Assignment to a community corrections center must be ordered as an intermediate sanction condition of probation, parole, or pre-release. At disposition, only a judge can order participation in an intermediate sanction level at a community corrections center. As a method of re-integration, the Massachusetts Parole Board, county sheriff's departments, and the Department of Correction use their respective classification standards to order participation in an intermediate sanction level at a community corrections center.
Non-Residential Services programs offer monitoring services of varying levels to a variety of offenders who live in the community. Non-Residential Services supervises Work Release and Community Corrections clients who are awaiting a bed in the residential program and those who are progressing after successfully completing a period of time on the residential program. Some offenders are sentenced directly to the program from the Courts. Non-Residential Services supervises parole clients as well as clients on deferred judgment status.

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