Since our founding in 1989, the Justice Programs Office conducted over 1,800 technical assistance, research, training, and evaluation projects for:
Local and State Governments
- Improvement of criminal and civil judicial process and dispute resolution alternatives
- Efficient utilization of justice system and human services resources
- Formulation of orderly processes for policy and programmatic change
- Improvement of interagency and community relations
- Training programs for judges, prosecutors, public defenders, judicial system managers, and general government elected officials
- Planning and assessment of correctional options/intermediate sanctions and other alternative disposition programs
- Facility planning and security audits/improvement programs
- Improved management of the court caseflow process, including pretrial release alternatives and delay reduction.
- Assessment of national drug abuse control strategies
- Federal/state relations regarding:
- justice system resource allocation and
- cooperative law enforcement and prosecution efforts
- National technical assistance and training programs to support state and local justice system improvement
International Organizations and Agencies
- US justice system seminars for official foreign visitors to the US
- Comparative justice system analyses and documentation
- International seminars, workshops, and conferences on justice system issues
- Information and technology transfer
- US liaison for the Moscow Research Center for Human Rights
- Judicial system improvement initiatives in Latin and South America providing alternatives to incarceration for drug offenders through development of treatment and other programs.
NIJ's Multisite Evaluation of Veterans Treatment Courts
There are now over 600 veterans treatment courts (VTCs) and veteran-focused court programs operating in the majority of states across the U.S. Although VTCs continue to rapidly propagate, empirical research on these programs is significantly lacking. The National Institute of Justice funded this comprehensive longitudinal multisite process, implementation, and short-term outcome evaluation. Exploratory in nature, the study examined a convenience sample of eight VTC programs across three Southern states (Florida, North Carolina, and Texas) between July 1, 2016, and June 30, 2019. The purpose of this study was to better understand the various veterans treatment court (VTC) program structures, policies, and procedures/practices, populations served (substance misuse, mental health issues), and basic program and participant outcomes (graduation and termination rates, and recidivism in terms of arrest, respectively).
For additional information, please view the project page and contact the study’s Principal Investigator, Dr. Julie Marie Baldwin.
We assisted courts in implementing trauma-responsive policies to identify survivors of human trafficking, responded to the needs of survivors with a range outcomes in their cases, and reduced the infliction of harm on survivors during legal proceedings.
JustLeadershipUSA Training Curriculum Development and Curriculum Evaluation
SPA faculty and staff, in partnership with JustLeadershipUSA (JLUSA) developed a leadership training curriculum for returning citizens who are mid-senior level leaders heading efforts in community organizing and advocacy.
Veterans Treatment Court Enhancement Initiative
We developed and administered a training and technical assistance for specialized screening, assessment, and case planning tools for veterans treatment courts (VTCs). The project team worked with pilot court sites to integrate the tools into existing court procedures and practices and provided ongoing technical assistance to address any implementation issues that arise.
Right to Counsel National Campaign
We led a national awareness campaign to inform and engage policymakers, criminal justice stakeholders, and the public on the importance of meaningfully carrying out the Sixth Amendment right to counsel and the effective delivery of public defense services.
National Drug Court Resource, Policy and Evidence-Based Practice Center
We managed the nation’s leading resource for treatment court practitioners. This hub of tools and information to help drug courts run more effectively featured a searchable online drug court map, sample operational forms, state legislation tracking, a podcast, opioid use disorder resources, and more.
Juvenile Drug Treatment Courts Training and Technical Assistance Initiative
As one of the leading federal training and technical assistance providers in the country, we worked with juvenile drug treatment courts across the nation and helped them apply evidenced-based practices in their programs to improve outcomes for the youth they serve.
Court Security and Disaster Preparedness Project (2003-2006)
Through this project, JPO assisted trial courts—particularly those in rural areas—in developing court security and emergency preparedness plans and response capabilities, both for the immediate emergency period and its longer-term aftermath. JPO was in contact with state court administrative offices in every state and conducted technical assistance visits to 20+ state trial courts located in smaller populated areas in eight states.
Criminal Courts Technical Assistance Project
The Bureau of Justice Assistance-funded Criminal Courts Technical Assistance Project (CCTAP) offered a wide range of free and cost-share services to criminal courts and related judicial system agencies. JPO coordinated and provided on-site consultation, workshops for judges and court and justice agency personnel, peer-to-peer visits to courts/justice agencies with promising practices, office-based assistance, including off-site review of documents/plans by consultants and staff, and the dissemination of publications.
BJA Differentiated Case Management Program
Under the sponsorship of the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), JPO launched the Differentiated Case Management (DCM) Initiative, which provided technical assistance to over 100 courts in the development and application of DCM concepts to the criminal and juvenile caseload and subsequent adaptation to civil and family case dockets.
Drug Market Intervention Training / Technical Assistance Initiative (2007-2010)
In September 2007, BJA launched a special training initiative to assist jurisdictions interested in implementing the Drug Market Intervention (DMI) Initiative as a means of responding to the problems of open drug markets that had developed in many communities, along with their associated crime, violence, and disorder. The initiative entailed a multi-agency effort by local and federal law enforcement officials, neighborhood leaders, social service providers, and local government officials. JPO provided technical assistance to jurisdictions participating in the BJA DMI training initiative as well as information on the DMI initiative to other requesting jurisdictions.
Legal Aid Interagency Roundtable Archive
On April 11, 2018 the Department of Justice announced on the Office for Legal Policy (OLP) website that OLP "has assumed the principal policy and legislative responsibilities of the Office for Access to Justice." With the Legal Aid Interagency Roundtable’s (LAIR's) future now uncertain JPO’s The Justice in Government Project has assembled an archive ofLAIR-related documents and blogs.
National Technical Assistance and Training Project (2005-2010)
Through a BJA-funded grant, JPO provided a wide range of technical services available, free of charge, to members of the criminal justice community. These services included on-site consultation by senior practitioners and other experts; training workshops for agency staff, on both an individual state basis as well as regionally; office-based assistance; telephone consultation on issues that arise; dissemination of relevant publications, resource materials, and operational documents developed by various participating sites; facilitation of hosted site visits of project staff to other jurisdictions to observe promising practices for potential replication; promotion of networking among sites through facilitated telephone conference calls on emerging issues of common concern; and peer-to-peer assistance, communication and information sharing regarding operational and policy issues that arise.
Pandemic Influenza Preparedness
JPO received a supplemental award to its BJA Criminal Courts Technical Assistance Project (CCTAP) that was used solely to assist local and state courts in undertaking planning and implementation processes critical to ensuring that state judicial systems have the ability to maintain the rule of law in any pandemic emergency situation.
Project Safe Neighborhoods Assistance Project (2003-2010)
JPO, in partnership with BJA and in coordination with other Department of Justice-sponsored technical assistance and training providers, provided short-term on-site consultant and material support to United States Attorney Offices and state and local law enforcement agencies in carrying out Project Safe Neighborhoods initiatives.
Research to Practice Initiative
JPO partnered with the National Center for State Courts for an Adult Drug Court Research to Practice Initiative (R2P) to promote the timely dissemination of information emerging from research on addiction science, substance abuse treatment and adult drug court programs. With funding from BJA and the National Institute of Justice, the R2P initiative produced a series of webinars, webcasts, and other work products that disseminated important research to practitioners and policymakers.
Senior Crisis Management Seminar (2007-2010)
JPO conducted the Senior Crisis Management Seminar (SCMS for senior professionals from foreign governments responsible for crisis management. The seminar was a one-week long, intensive program addressing a wide range of issues relating to crisis/emergency management. The seminar provided needs-based instruction concerning the development, resourcing, implementation and localized best practices of crisis management. Through instructor and participant interaction and discussion, participating government officials critically analyzed their policies, responses, and situational assessment to crisis management.
Drug Court Technical Assistance
JPO provided technical assistance and training services to adult drug courts under a cooperative agreement with the BJA. The BJA-funded Adult Drug Court Technical Assistance Project (DCTAP) offered a wide range of free and cost-share services to drug court and other problem-solving court programs that focused on services to substance abusing offenders to promote improved program effectiveness and long-term participant success.
Veterans Court Initiative
In 2014, as part of the BJA-funded Adult Drug Court Technical Assistance Project (DCTAP), JPO launched a special Veterans Treatment Court Initiative to address the special screening, assessment, coordination, and service delivery issues veterans treatment courts are addressing.