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Restitution

Articles and other resources related to probation officers and restitution orders.

Increasing restitution for crime victims: A toolkit
from the entry by Jeanette Moll on Right on Crime: The National Center for Victims of Crime recently released a “Restitution Toolkit,” which provides state agencies and external organizations information on instituting or furthering restitution opportunities for crime victims. The information is in-depth and comprehensive, including:
Strehorn, Molly Ryan. Restorative Probation in Franklin County, Massachusetts: A Qualitative Evaluation
In Franklin County, MA, Restorative Probation, which began in 1996 serving residents of the county through the courts, is a partnership program under the Reinventing Justice Project. Restorative Probation is an alternative rehabilitation program in which offenders meet with a group of community volunteers, the victim, and anyone else impacted by the crime. Restorative justice is used around the world to heal the relationships damaged by crime. With the main goal of restorative work to heal relationships damaged by crime, it is extremely difficult to measure its outcomes through evaluation. Since its inception in 1996, Restorative Probation has not had a formal assessment. This qualitative evaluation of Restorative Probation concentrates on the impact that the program has on offenders. A survey was utilized which concentrated on the probationers who successfully completed the program in the past 4 years. The evaluation indicates that the program is making great strides in the process of healing the relationships damaged by crime. The key values provide a solid framework for programs such as Restorative Probation to offer holistic approaches to community justice. The implementation of the Reinventing Justice project in Franklin County shows strong community activism and willingness on the part of the civic leaders to try new methods. Recommendations were presented on ways to improve Restorative Probation. Abstract courtesy of National Criminal Justice Reference Service, www.ncjrs.org.
Drakulich, Kevin M and Sprayregen, Mary and Karp, David R. Vermont Reparative Probation: Year 2000 Outcome Evaluation. Final Report.
The Vermont Department of Corrections Reparative Probation Program began in 1995. Since then hundreds of community board programs have been launched across the country. This study represents the first formal independent evaluation of outcomes of a probation-based community board model, with particular focus on Vermont reparative probation. In it the authors of the study evaluate the effectiveness of reparative probation in realizing identified program goals. Specifically they look at effectiveness in relation to four outcomes: involvement of communities; needs of victims addressed; restoration for communities; and accountability for offenders. After outlining the research methodology, the authors present their results with respect to each outcome, make recommendations for future data collection and evaluation, and summarize their key findings. Additional information at the end includes a list of research references and evaluation instruments.
Huey, Meredith P. and Humphrey, John A. and Burford, Gale. Reparative versus Standard Probation: Community Justice Outcomes.
The purpose of this investigation is to assess the relative merits of reparative versus standard probation for the reduction in criminal re-offending. Data provided by the Vermont Department of Corrections, which included information from all fourteen Vermont District Courts, formed the basis for the analysis. All court convictions (n=34,471 dockets) for misdemeanor charges sentenced and remanded to the Vermont Department of Corrections for probation supervision for the years 1998-2005 were initially analyzed. To examine differential outcomes of standard versus reparative probation over a five-year period, the analysis utilizes complete data for 9,078 offenders sentenced for misdemeanor crimes to either standard or reparative probation during the years 1998-2000. This cohort of probationers was tracked for five years from the point of placement on probation to determine the probability of a new conviction either during or following the probationary period. (excerpt)
Smit, J.. "The Role of Probation in Restitution Procedures."
This article discusses the role of probation in restitution procedures. The author firsts outlines briefly the Dutch context of the probation services. Secondly, the significance of compensation and restitution are considered from a theoretical frame of reference of social order,. Third, the results of an investigation among probation officers aimed at identifying their contribution in these procedures are presented. Finally, an attempt is made to picture the future role of probation.
Harding, J. Whither Restitutional Justice in England and Wales: A Probation Perspective
In the 1980's a series of mediation and reparation schemes were developed in England by probation services. Recent national probation standards require probation officers be concerned about the impact of the crime on victims including an assessment of the offender's attitude and awareness of the consequence of the offence. The recent victims charter takes probation into new work in terms of a requirement that probation officers make contact with victims to notify victims of parole consideration for any prisoner serving a life sentence. Reparative principles can be built into presentence recommendations in the form of compensation to individual victims or unpaid work for the benefit of the wider community.

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