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Risk-Need-Responsivity: Managing Risk and Mental Health for Juvenile Justice-Involved Youth

  • This is an online event. (map)

Presenter: Gina Vincent, Ph.D

Research indicates that the old adage of "doing the time for the crime" does not have an appreciable impact on re-offending. This is particularly the case for young offenders; a group for which deeper penetration into the juvenile justice system can in fact make them worse. Justice agencies will have more success if they base their intervention decisions on some essential characteristics of the offender; namely, the level of risk for re-offending and specific criminogenic needs (risk factors that can change over time). This approach is known as Risk-Needs-Responsivity (RNR). The first step in implementing RNR principles is having a method for valid identification of risk levels and criminogenic risk factors and understanding where mental health fits in. Risk assessment, if implemented properly, can guide dispositions and case management decisions in a manner that conserves resources, while increasing effectiveness and preserving public safety.

This webinar will begin with an overview of the characteristics of risk assessment instruments and RNR principles. It will also review results from a multi-site quasi-experimental study of the impact of implementation of risk assessment in six juvenile probation offices on case management decisions and re-offending.