Laura and John Arnold Foundation: Promoting Success in Community Supervision
The Laura and John Arnold Foundation (LJAF) aims to address the nation’s most pressing and persistent challenges using evidence-based, multidisciplinary approaches. The goal of this program is to help spur community corrections research and policy innovations that promote success and improve supervision outcomes. LJAF seeks proposals for projects that address the following priorities:
1. Shaping, accelerating, and evaluating state policy changes: LJAF aims to advance state policies that ensure the right people are on supervision and that interventions address their underlying needs. LJAF hopes to support projects that advance a transformation from reactive (catching failure) to proactive (preventing crime and promoting success) approaches. Recent policy reforms have aimed to focus scarce supervision resources on the people who pose the greatest public safety risk and to align supervision approaches with research on what works to facilitate behavior change. LJAF seeks proposals that shape, accelerate, and/or evaluate these kinds of state policy changes.
2. Reducing revocations while protecting public safety: LJAF invites proposals that increase understanding of the causes of revocations and develop interventions to reduce incarceration while protecting public safety. Too little is known about the underlying behaviors and practices—of the person on supervision and the person or agency providing supervision—that lead to revocations to prison or jail. Although LJAF does not know how many revocations result from technical violations of supervision, existing data suggest revocations are a significant driver of incarceration. In some cases, money spent on incarceration could achieve better outcomes if redirected to address the challenges of those on supervision, thus preventing revocations. LJAF seeks proposals that reveal the drivers of revocations and advance changes to policy and practice that safely reduce violations and incarceration.
3. Accelerating adoption of evidence-based practices and supporting leadership development and culture change to sustain reforms: LJAF invites proposals to grow and accelerate adoption of evidence-based practices and to support the leadership development and culture changes needed to sustain reforms. A growing body of research examines the programs, practices, and policies that are most likely to produce positive results. They include evaluating individuals with a valid risk-needs assessment to determine the appropriate level of service and supervision; placing individuals in programs that use cognitive behavioral therapies and other research-based approaches; and incentivizing individuals to stay crime- and drug-free with the right balance of consequences for violations and rewards for compliance. Despite these advances, community supervision agencies face challenges in fully integrating these practices into their operations. Through this objective, LJAF seeks proposals that will help supervision agencies scale up effective programs and increase uptake and high quality implementation of evidence-based practices.
4. Promoting fairness and justice: LJAF plans to examine and address racial and economic disparity in community supervision. Correctional control is concentrated in communities of color, with 1 in 23 black adults on probation compared with 1 in 81 white adults. One study finds that 1 in 6 black men aged 20 to 34 without a high school diploma are on probation. The limited data available indicate the most extreme consequence of failure— revocation to incarceration—is also borne disproportionately by people of color. Additionally, probation and parole often amplify the burden of criminal justice fines and fees, which most often fall on those with the fewest economic means. In addition to acting in a debt collection capacity for fines and fees assessed by the courts, probation and parole agencies typically assess their own fees, which support their operations and may create incentives to extend supervision for those who comply with their payment requirements. These problems are further exacerbated by private probation companies, which may have a motivation to increase caseloads to generate greater profits and are often subject to minimal oversight or accountability. Through this objective, LJAF seeks proposals that will promote fairness and justice through research, education, and advocacy campaigns.
Amount: LJAF permits grantees to request reasonable and justifiable funding for all of the direct costs associated with a project, including salaries and federally required benefits for employees, travel, meetings and conferences, data access fees, and payments to third-party consultants and sub-grantees that are directly attributable to or created specifically for the purpose supported by a particular grant.
Eligibility: Any team qualified to deliver on the above priorities. Project teams may partner with universities, researchers, scholars, policymakers, practitioners, and subject matter experts to ensure a highly qualified team.
*Note: The October 31, 2018 deadline is for Letters of Intent; once submitted, select applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal. The full proposal deadline is December 19, 2018.
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