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California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
Expert Panel on Adult Offender and Recidivism Reduction Programming
Report to the California State Legislature

A Roadmap for Effective Offender Programming in California

California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
Expert Panel on Adult Offender Reentry and Recidivism
Reduction Programs
Report to the California State Legislature: A Roadmap for
Effective Offender Programming in California
Copyright © 2007
by California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation
All rights reserved. Permission is granted to reproduce this
report for non-commercial purposes.
This project was funded under Provision 18 of the California Budget Act for
Fiscal Year 2006/2007. California State University, Long Beach, University
College and Extension Services was contracted to provide project
management, logistical support, and report compilation services for this
project.

Points of view, recommendations, or findings stated in this document
represent the consensus of the entire Expert Panel and do not necessarily
represent the views of individual Expert Panel Members, nor do they
represent the official positions or policies of the California Department of
Corrections and Rehabilitation.
June 29, 2007
Sacramento, California

Report design by Paul Edward.
Cover image: “Prison Corridor” Copyright © 2007 Paul Edward. All rights
reserved.

Contents
Members of the Expert Panel‑ii
Sub-Committees of the Expert Panel‑iii
Expert Panel and Sub-Committee Meeting Dates and Locations‑iii
Project Support Team‑iv
Program Review Support‑v
Executive Summary‑vii
Introduction‑1
Part I—The Roadmap‑9
Factors External to the Programming Environment	
Clearing the Road for Rehabilitation	14
Factors Internal to the Programming Environment	19
Summary of Findings and Recommendations	
50
Making it Work in California	 51

9

Part II—The Program Reviews‑55
Where California Now Stands	
55
Identifying Recidivism Reduction Programs	57
Methodology for Surveying Inventory Programs	 59
Evaluating Recidivism Reduction Programs	59
CPAP Assessments Details	 64
CPAP Program Reviews Conclusion	 71
Part III—Next Steps and Conclusion‑73
Appendix A—Reports Previously Published Reports on California’s Correctional
Crisis‑77
Appendix B—Full-Sized California Logic Model‑81
Appendix C—Recommendations for Incorporating Evidence-Based Practices in the
CDCR‑83
Appendix D—Resources for Implementing Recommendations in the CDCR‑85
Appendix E—Estimating the Impacts of Our Recommendations‑87
Appendix F—Expanded Space and Safety Recommendations‑101
Appendix G—CDCR Female Offender Reform‑105
Appendix H—Arizona Department of Corrections Fast Track Program‑109
Appendix I—The Important Role of the Community in the Correctional Process‑113
Appendix J—Implementation Requirements‑117
Appendix K—Implementation Timeline‑123
Appendix L—Detailed CDCR Adult Offender Profile Information and Tables‑127
Appendix M—Detailed CDCR Adult Offender Programs and Activities Tables ‑147
Appendix N—Detailed CDCR Program Review Information‑165
References‑191

i

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Members of the Expert Panel
Michael Jacobson, Ph.D., is Director of the
Vera Institute of Justice, and a professor at
the John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Marisela Montes, Chair. Marisela is
the Chief Deputy Secretary for Adult
Programs with the California Department of
Corrections and Rehabilitation.

Barry Krisberg, Ph.D., is the President
of the National Council on Crime and
Delinquency and a lecturer in the
Department of Legal Studies at UC Berkeley.

Joan Petersilia, Ph.D., Co-Chair. Joan is
a Professor of Criminology, Law & Society
at University of California Irvine (UCI) and
is also the Director of the UCI Center for
Evidence-Based Corrections.

Joseph Lehman is retired after having
served as the Secretary of Department of
Corrections in the states of Washington,
Maine, and Pennsylvania.

James Austin, Ph.D., is the President of the
JFA Institute.

Mimi Silbert, Ph. D. is the Co-Founder and
President of The Delancey Street Foundation,
one of the nation’s leading self-help
residential education centers.

Jeffrey Beard, Ph.D., is the Secretary of
Corrections for the Pennsylvania Department
of Corrections.
Barbara Bloom, Ph.D., is an Associate
Professor in the Department of Criminology
and Criminal Justice at Sonoma State
University and the Co-Director of the Center
for Gender and Justice.

Faye S. Taxman, Ph.D. is a Professor in
the Administration of Justice Program at
George Mason University and Director of the
Center for Advancing Correctional Excellence
(ACE!).

Mark Carey is the President of the
American Probation and Parole Association
and the President of The Carey Group, Inc.,
a practitioner based consulting firm on
effective correctional practices.

Reginald Wilkinson, Ed.D. is a retired
director of the Ohio Department of
Rehabilitation and Correction and Chair of
the National Institute of Corrections Advisory
Board.

Elyse Clawson, is the Executive Director
of the Crime and Justice Institute and a
consultant.
James H. Gomez. Jim is the CEO of the
California Association of Health Facilities,
which represents over 1200 facilities in the
skilled nursing and ICF/MR field. He also
was Chief Operating Officer of the California
Public Employees’ Retirement System for
6 years and prior to that was Director of
Corrections in California from 1991-1996.
Kermit Humphries is a Correctional
Program Specialist with the National
Institute of Corrections (NIC) in Washington,
DC.
Steven J. Ickes, is a Deputy Director of the
Arizona Department of Corrections.
ii

Sub-Committees of the
Expert Panel

Expert Panel and
Sub-Committee Meeting
Dates and Locations

Program Review Sub-Committee
Joan Petersilia, Ph.D., Chair
Barry Krisberg, Ph.D.
Reginald Wilkinson, Ed.D.

Expert Panel Meetings
December 14-15, 2006
Delancey Street Foundation
San Francisco, California

Model Program Sub-Committee
Joe Lehman, Chair
James Austin, Ph.D.
Jeffrey Beard, Ph.D.
Barbara Bloom, Ph.D.
Mark Carey
Elyse Clawson
James H. Gomez
Kermit Humphries
Steven J. Ickes
Michael Jacobson, Ph.D.
Mimi Silbert, Ph. D.
Faye S. Taxman, Ph.D.

February 1-2, 2007
Long Beach, California
April 25-27, 2007
Sacramento, California
Program Review Sub-Committee
Meetings
February 1, 2007
Long Beach, California
March 29, 2007
Santa Monica, California
April 16, 2007
Santa Monica, California
Model Program Sub-Committee
Meetings
January 15, 2007
Sacramento, California
January 25-26, 2007
Chester, Pennsylvania
March 14, 2007
Washington, DC

Expert Panel Meeting: April 25, 2007
Sacramento, California

iii

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Project Support Team
Heather Yates. Heather is a Program
Assistant with the Pennsylvania Department
of Corrections. Heather was responsible for
helping to create the California Logic Model
and associated appendices.

Paul Edward, MA. Paul is the Special
Projects Director for California State
University Long Beach (CSULB), University
College and Extension Services and served
as the Project Manager, Meeting Facilitator,
and Executive Editor of this Report.

Phil Goodman, doctoral student, UCI
Center for Evidence-Based Corrections.
Randy Myers, doctoral student, UCI Center
for Evidence-Based Corrections.
Jason Peckenpaugh, law student, Stanford
Law School.
Lori Sexton, doctoral student, UCI Center
for Evidence-Based Corrections.
Rita Shah, doctoral student, UCI Center for
Evidence-Based Corrections.
Sarah Smith, doctoral student, UCI Center
for Evidence-Based Corrections.
Nicholas Tuosto, law student, Stanford
Law School.
Alyssa Whitby, doctoral student, UCI
Center for Evidence-Based Corrections.

Robert Ambroselli. Robert is an Associate
Director of the Division of Adult Parole
Operations for the California Department of
Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR).
Armand Burruel. Armand is the Acting
Director of the Division of Reentry and
Recidivism Reduction for the CDCR.
Steve Chapman, Ph.D. Steve is the
Assistant Secretary, Office of Research for
the CDCR.
Bubpha Chen, MA. Bubpha is a retired
Research Program Specialist III for the
CDCR.
Jesse Jannetta, M.P.P. Jesse is a Research
Specialist at the UCI Center for EvidenceBased Corrections.
Lance Larson, MA. Lance is the Special
Projects Coordinator for CSULB, University
College and Extension Services and served
as the Assistant Project Manager.
Jeff Lin, Ph.D. Jeff is a Postdoctoral Scholar
at the UCI Center for Evidence-Based
Corrections.
Regina Quiambao. Regina is the Director
of Corporate Education for CSULB, University
College and Extension Services.
Susan Turner, Ph.D. Susan is a Professor
of Criminology, Law & Society at UCI and
the Associate Director of the UCI Center for
Evidence-Based Corrections.
Christine Waltmire. Christine is the
Program Area Secretary for CSULB,
University College and Extension Services
and coordinated all of the logistical
arrangements for the project.
iv

Program Review Support

Program Providers:
Kathy Acquistapace, Sheryl Albrecht,
Delita Alvarado, Paul Billeci, Dale Benner,
Wendy Broughton, Vivian Brown, Mary
Lou Browning, Bari Caine-Lomberto, Mike
d’Agostin, Jesse Delval, Harvey Edeliant,
Vitka Eisen, Elijah Ellis, Beth Forth, Chris
Grella, Dwight James, Richard Jimenez,
Deanna Kivett, Angela Knox, Daniel Lane,
Jean LeFlore, Christopher Leibforth, Barry
Lindstrom, Ernie Logan, Dave Martin,
Robin McGrath, Debbie McMillan, Kevin
Mizner, Matt Moore, Annie Negrete, Garnett
Newcombe, Anita Paredes, Rodney Quinn,
Vicki Redding, J. Manny Rivera, Amanda
Ruiz, Denise Sassoon, Ana Sepulveda,
Sharon Snaer-Hill, Judy Stallings, Laura
Strachan, Shannon Swain, Mary Lou Vachet,
Tommy Vaughn, Brenda Wiewel, Sam
Williams

The Expert Panel would like to thank these
individuals for their invaluable assistance
in completing the Nominated Recidivism
Reduction Program Inventory and the CPAP
Assessments:
CDCR Personnel:
Paula Agostini, Randy Ayers, Nikki Baumrind,
Janette Berringer, Janet Blaylock, Linda
Bollinger, Laura Bowman, Dennis Butcher,
Jim Bruce, Rob Churchill, Robin Dartis, David
DeLuz, Jennifer Dubendorf, Victoria Eberle,
Martha Esmael, Rex Gregory, Chris Haws,
Karen Heintschel, Richard Krupp, Nancy
Lasarte, Tina Leonard, Allan Loucks, Dale
Manners, Roberto Mata, Liz Najari, Ame
Nakamura, Joe Ossmann, Goldie Parino,
Chuck Pattillo, Tom Posey, Art Quinton, Tom
Rietz, Dave Robinson, Frank Russell, Del
Sayles-Owen,Ken Skolnik, Emily Smith, Evie
Smith, Murdock Smith, Wendy Still, Robert
Storms, Gary Sutherland, Linda Thompson,
Jennifer Valdez

v

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

vi

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Executive Summary
Research shows that correctional programs reduce recidivism by changing offender behavior.
However, research also shows that to achieve positive outcomes, correctional agencies must
provide rehabilitation programs to the appropriate participants in a manner consistent with
evidence-based programming design. California has been offering rehabilitation programs
to its adult offenders for over 50 years; yet California’s adult offender recidivism rate is one
of the highest in the nation. Clearly something is wrong. Either something is preventing the
programs from achieving their intended effects or something is wrong with the programs
themselves.
The Panel believes that both explanations are true. First, a combination of various factors
has caused these programs to be less effective than they should be in reducing criminal
behavior. These factors, which must be resolved before California can have any hope of
achieving rehabilitation programming success, include dangerous overcrowding (that makes
prisons unsafe and reduces space to run programs) and lack of incentives for offenders to
participate in rehabilitation programming. Second, the California Department of Corrections
and Rehabilitation (CDCR) does not offer enough quality rehabilitation programs to its adult
offenders, and it currently assigns offenders to programming in a way that all but ensures
that most offenders will not get to the programs they really need.

The Panel
The CDCR created the Expert Panel on Adult Offender Reentry and Recidivism Reduction
Programs (the Panel) in response to authorization language placed in the Budget Act
of 2006-2007. The Legislature directed the CDCR to contract with correctional program
experts to complete an assessment of California’s adult prison and parole programs
designed to reduce recidivism. Additionally, the CDCR tasked the Panel to provide it with
recommendations for improving the programming in California’s prison and parole system.
This Panel of nationally recognized experts in the field of corrections includes experienced
correctional agency administrators and leading academic researchers.

The Roadmap
This Report to the California State Legislature: A Roadmap for Effective Offender
Programming in California provides an assessment of the state of correctional programming
in California’s adult prison and parole systems. This report also includes recommendations
intended to guide California in creating a model rehabilitation programming system. The
word system is emphasized to underscore the fact that the external environment plays an
important role in determining the outcomes of rehabilitation programs. In other words,
the activities that occur in the cellblocks, institutional common areas, parole offices, and
communities either diminish or enhance the changes offenders make as a result of their
rehabilitation programs.
The essential test for each of the Panel’s recommendations is: Is it evidence-based? In
the Panel’s view, “evidence” comes from research and experience. The Panel presents
recommendations based on research that represents a broad range of disciplines including
rehabilitation, education, corrections administration, psychology, and organizational
development. On the experience side, the Panel’s recommendations include proposals that
within the profession are regarded as best and promising practices and are being used by
corrections agencies in other states that have faced situations and challenges similar to
California’s.
vii

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

The target audience of this report is a mixture of policymakers in the legislative and
executive branches of California government, as well as practitioners within and outside the
CDCR. California’s leaders will enhance the value of this report to the extent that they share
it with the citizens of California, who are the true stakeholders for what happens in CDCR
prisons and parole offices.

External Factors Preventing Programming Success
Beginning in 1976, with the passage of California’s Determinate Sentencing Act (DSL),
the state began a thirty-year cycle of increasingly stringent “tough on crime” laws. In
fact, during this time frame, Californians enacted 80 sentencing laws (Little Hoover
Commission, 2007). These laws, like California’s “Three Strikes and You’re Out” ballot
initiative (Proposition 184), resulted in more and more people being sentenced to state
prison terms for longer periods of time. In 2005, the California Department of Corrections
(CDC) changed its mission to include rehabilitation and was renamed the California
Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR). But, by that time California’s external
legal environment had created two significant barriers to the CDCR’s internal rehabilitation
efforts:
•	 California’s prisons are dangerously overcrowded.
•	 California treats offenders who complete rehabilitation programs nearly the same way it
treats those who do not.

Dangerous Overcrowding
At the time of this report, the CDCR was housing 172,385 prisoners in facilities designed
to hold 100,000. The CDCR was housing more than 18,000 of those prisoners in space
designed for programming and other activities. The other side of the overcrowding coin is
that when wardens implement security lockdowns, they usually shut down all programming
in the affected areas. Not only is this disruptive to programming but, the Panel believes the
number and duration of lockdowns in California prisons is excessive. (The Panel provides
specific space and safety recommendations in Appendix F.) In parole offices, space is limited
for programming. In some cases this requires the CDCR to offer programming in off-site
facilities that are less accessible to parolees and are often crowded themselves.

Recommendation 1—Reduce overcrowding in its prison facilities and parole
offices.
The Panel recommends that California take the necessary measures to reduce overcrowding
in its correctional facilities. Doing so will not solve California’s recidivism problems, but it will
give its adult offenders the ability to access much-needed rehabilitation programming, which
is a “pre-condition” to success.

Lack of Incentives to Complete Programs
The Panel believes that California’s correctional culture is oriented more towards control and
punishment, than rehabilitation. This has resulted in offenders receiving few incentives to
participate in rehabilitation programming. While the Panel agrees that control and safety
within prison are essential, it also recognizes that the CDCR needs to balance its custody
and rehabilitation missions. Additionally, California needs to reflect this balance in its
allocation of correctional resources.
viii

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Figure A: California Annual Costs to Incarcerate a Prisoner

Source: California Legislative Analyst’s Office, January 31, 2007

Figure A shows the current imbalance in the CDCR’s resource allocations. According to
the latest data from the California Legislative Analyst’s Office (2007), of the $43,287 that
California spends on each prisoner per year, 45% ($19,561) is spent on “Security” concerns,
while only 5% ($2,053) is spent on programming (“Employment/Training”).
The Panel believes that it is critical for California to institute a system of positive
reinforcement of offender behavior that supports rehabilitation. One of the best ways
to shape behavior is to provide positive rewards for people when they engage in
positive activities. Other states like Pennsylvania, Washington, and Ohio have used such
reinforcement systems to encourage positive behavior of offenders in their correctional
systems. However, the Panel found that the CDCR does not have a system of sufficient
incentives that rewards program completion for all of its programs. Thus the gains
that prisoners make in their rehabilitative programming are diluted by a correctional
environment that treats offenders who participate in these programs virtually the same as
those who do not.

Recommendation 2—Enact legislation to expand its system of positive
reinforcements for offenders who successfully complete their rehabilitation
program requirements, comply with institutional rules in prison, and fulfill
their parole obligations in the community.
The Panel recommends that California enact the necessary legislation to expand its system
of positive reinforcements for program participation and good behavior for offenders in its
prison and parole systems. AB 900, which was enacted in May 2007, directed the CDCR
to develop incentives for offenders who complete academic and vocational education
programs. The Panel believes that further legislation should be enacted that provides
incentives for completing any of the evidence-based rehabilitation programs that the CDCR
offers to its adult offenders.
Additionally, the Panel recommends that the CDCR implement those positive reinforcements
that do not require legislation. For example: expanded visitation privileges, locating
prisoners in prisons closer to their homes, providing long distance phone calls, and issuing
ix

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

vouchers for the prison canteens.

Internal Factors Preventing Programming Success
The Panel’s initial review of the CDCR’s adult offender program offerings, using the California
Program Assessment Process (CPAP) found that while there was some good news: a few
programs in a few areas were operating well; overall, California has some work to do to
improve the state of rehabilitation programming in the CDCR. Table A identifies the CPAP
rating elements and notes how each of the 11 rated programs performed.
Table A: Summary of CPAP Assessments on 11 Rated Recidivism Reduction Programs

IYO

Reentry
Education

SAP-SATF

TCMPMHSCP

DRC

FOTEP

ICDTP

PEP

RMSC

STAR

Parole/Community
Programs

FFP

Institution
Programs

Assesses risk and targets high-risk

◊

◊

◊

∞

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Assesses criminogenic needs and delivers services
accordingly

●

◊

◊

●

●

●

◊

●

◊

◊

●

Theoretical model clearly articulated

●

●

◊

●

●

●

●

●

●

◊

●

Has program manual and/or curriculum

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

Uses cognitive-behavioral or social learning
methods

●

◊

◊

●

●

●

●

●

◊

●

●

Enhances intrinsic motivation

●

◊

◊

●

◊

●

●

●

◊

◊

●

Continuum with other programs and community
support networks

●

●

◊

●

●

●

●

●

∞

●

∞

Program dosage varies by risk level

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Responsive to learning style, motivation and
culture of offenders

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

◊

●

◊

Uses positive reinforcement

●

◊

◊

●

◊

●

●

●

◊

●

●

Staff has undergraduate degrees

◊

◊

●

◊

●

●

◊

●

◊

●

◊

Staff has experience working with offenders

●

●

●

●

?

●

●

●

●

●

●

Staff recruitment and retention strategy

●

◊

◊

●

●

●

◊

●

◊

●

●

New staff training

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

◊

◊

●

Program director qualifications

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

●

●

◊

◊

●

Program data collected and analyzed

●

●

◊

●

◊

◊

●

●

◊

◊

◊

Rigor of evaluation studies

◊

◊

◊

●

●

●

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Evaluation study appeared in peer-reviewed
publication

◊

◊

◊

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Extent and consistency of evaluation results

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

Best practices and/or expert panel recommends

Legend: ● Meets criteria ∞ Partially meets criteria ◊ Does not meet criteria ? No data provided
FFP: Family Foundations Program; IYO: Incarcerated Youth Offenders; SAP-SATF: Substance Abuse Program
at California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility-Yard F; TCMP-MHSCP: Transitional Case Management
Program-Mental Health Services Continuum; DRC: Day Reporting Center; FOTEP: Female Offender Treatment
and Employment Program; ICDTP: In-Custody Drug Treatment Program; PEP: Parolee Employment Program;
RMSC: Residential Multi-Service Center; STAR: Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery

x

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

While the Panel is reluctant to generalize from the sample of programs it reviewed:
•	 the Panel found that most of the 11 programs that it reviewed contained program
design elements that were in line with “what works” research for effective adult offender
rehabilitation programming, and
•	 the Panel found that the CDCR does not match offender needs to program objectives
when assigning offenders to programming.
The Panel believes that the CDCR needs to complete its program assessments and concurs
with its decision to commission further research in this area.

The Need for Objective Assessments
Assessing offender risk levels and needs is a crucial component of effective programming.
Doing so allows correctional agencies to assign offenders to the programs that will most
likely benefit them. But the CDCR often assigns offenders to programming on a firstcome, first-served, basis. This practice virtually ensures that offenders are not getting the
rehabilitation programming that they need.

Recommendation 3—Select and utilize a risk assessment tool to assess
offender risk to reoffend.
The CDCR has been using an objective risk assessment tool with its parole population for
the past two years and has recently initiated use of the same tool with its prison population.
The Panel recommends that the CDCR fully utilize this tool, or a similar tool to assess risk to
reoffend levels of its adult offenders.
Recommendation 4—Determine offender rehabilitation programming based on
the results of assessment tools that identify and measure criminogenic and
other needs.
The Panel recommends that the CDCR adopt and utilize a needs assessment tool that would
allow the CDCR to identify which offenders should be provided with rehabilitative treatment
programming and which offenders should be placed in programming designed to improve
their life skills and provide them with personal growth opportunities. The Panel further
recommends that the CDCR develop a risk-needs matrix to assign offenders to programming
based on their risk to reoffend levels and their assessed needs.
•	 For high and moderate risk to reoffend level prisoners and parolees, the CDCR should
assess their criminogenic needs and assign them to the appropriate rehabilitation
treatment programs and services.
•	 For low risk to reoffend prisoners and parolees, the CDCR should assess their basic skills
(e.g., interpersonal, academic, and educational) and assign them to the appropriate
programming.

xi

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Seven Criminogenic Needs Areas
Research has demonstrated that varied combinations of these seven criminogenic needs (dynamic risk
factors) drive criminal behavior in male offenders:
1.	
2.	
3.	
4.	
5.	
6.	
7.	

Educational-vocational-financial deficits and achievement skills
Anti-social attitudes and beliefs
Anti-social and pro-criminal associates and isolation for pro-social others
Temperament and impulsiveness (weak self-control) factors
Familial-marital-dysfunctional relationship (lack of nurturance-caring and/or monitoring-supervision)
Alcohol and other drug disorders
Deviant sexual preferences and arousal patterns

The concept of criminogenic needs means that research shows that the offender population has a higher
prevalence of these behaviors than does the general population. Therefore, the presence of these needs
in a person may very well indicate a tendency toward criminal activity. The key to understanding the
importance of these criminogenic needs is the fact that they represent a constellation of characteristics or
circumstances. The mission, of course, is to divert the offender from adverse behaviors and to replace them
with healthy alternatives.

Recommendation 5—Create and monitor a behavior management plan for
each offender.
The Panel recommends that the CDCR create a behavior management (or case) plan for
each of its adult offenders in prison and on parole. The CDCR should actively monitor
these plans to keep track of the progress that offenders are making toward achieving
their rehabilitation programming objectives. Behavior management plans are critical tools
to ensure that offenders are assigned to the appropriate programs based on the relative
strengths of their criminogenic needs.

Recommendation 6—Select and deliver in prison and in the community a core
set of programs that covers the six major offender programming areas—
(a) Academic, Vocational, and Financial; (b) Alcohol and other Drugs; (c)
Aggression, Hostility, Anger, and Violence; (d) Criminal Thinking, Behaviors,
and Associations; (e) Family, Marital, and Relationships; and (f) Sex
Offending.
The Panel recommends that the CDCR select and deliver a core set of evidence-based
rehabilitation programs that covers the six major offender programming areas. The
effectiveness of rehabilitation services depends on the quality, quantity, and content of the
programs.

xii

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Table B: CDCR Nominated Recidivism Reduction Programs and the Six Major Programming Areas
Six Major Offender Program Areas

# of CDCR Recidivism Reduction Programs

Academic, Vocational, and Financial

17

Alcohol and Other Drugs

12

Aggression, Hostility, Anger, and Violence

2

Criminal Thinking, Behaviors, and Associations

2

Family, Marital, and Relationships

3

Sex Offending

0

Table B shows that the CDCR currently offers a fair number of programs in the first two
major programming areas, but offers relatively few programs in the last four, including no
sex offending rehabilitation programs, since some sex offender programs do take place
in hospital or civil commitment programs. The Panel feels that the CDCR needs to round
out its program offerings and develop at least one evidence-based program for each of
the program areas based on the assessed criminogenic needs of its prison and parole
populations. Additionally, each of the programs offered should be standardized so that the
content is consistent among prison facilities, parole offices, and community-based providers.

Recommendation 7—Develop systems and procedures to collect and utilize
programming process and outcome measures.
The CDCR needs to develop information systems and operations procedures to ensure that
it collects rehabilitation programming outcome data from each program it offers and each
offender it assigns to programming. This information will allow the CDCR to determine
(a) the effectiveness of the programs on participants, (b) why and how the programs are
producing the results they are obtaining, and (c) how to improve the programs.

Recommendation 8—Continue to develop and strengthen its formal
partnerships with community stakeholders.
The Panel recommends that the CDCR establish interagency steering committees at both
the statewide and community levels to ensure the appropriate coordination of transition
services for its adult offenders moving from prisons to their communities. For offenders
to sustain the treatment gains they have achieved through their participation in CDCR
programming, they require the assistance of their family members, friends, social service
agencies, criminal justice professionals, and a host of other community stakeholders. This
assistance also means including family members and other important support members in
the offenders’ actual programming.

xiii

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Recommendation 9—Modify programs and services delivered in the
community (parole supervision and community based programs and services)
to ensure that those services: (a) target the criminogenic needs areas of high
and moderate risk offenders; (b) assist all returning offenders maintain their
sobriety, locate housing, and obtain employment; and (c) identify and reduce
the risk factors within specific neighborhoods and communities.
The Panel recommends that the CDCR require all of its programs and services that are
delivered in the community, including parole supervision, to capitalize on activities that will
keep offenders from re-offending. Again, this is achieved by reducing their criminogenic
and other needs by helping offenders avoid alcohol and other drugs, find suitable housing,
and secure meaningful work. Additionally, the CDCR should assign its parole agents on a
geographical basis and train them to identify and mitigate the risk factors related to the
safety of places and victims within the community.

Recommendation 10: Develop the community as a protective factor against
continuing involvement in the criminal justice system for offenders reentering
the community on parole and-or in other correctional statuses (e.g.,
probation, diversion, etc.).
The Panel recommends that California develop a system of informal social controls in its
communities that influence offenders’ critical thinking, positive relationships, and healthy
behaviors to reduce the likelihood that offenders will return to a life of crime.

Recommendation 11—Develop structured guidelines to respond to technical
parole violations based on risk to re-offend level of the offender and the
seriousness of the violation.
The Panel recommends that the CDCR develop and implement structured sanctions—based
on the offenders’ risk to reoffend and the seriousness of the violations—for offenders who
violate parole conditions and incentives for offenders who do not.

Expected Positive Outcomes
The Panel believes that if California implements all of its recommendations, the state may
significantly reduce the large number of parolees who are currently violating their parole
conditions and being returned to prison. Further, by expanding its incentive system, the
state will encourage prisoners and parolees to participate in and complete programs. This
could lower California’s projected prison population with no major increase to the parole
population.
In this report, the Panel recommends strategies that would reduce the number of prison
beds that California needs by 42,000 to 48,000 beds. The result would mean an annual
savings of between $848 and $996 million. New investments in prison and community
programming should cost between $628 million and $652 million a year. A significant
portion of these costs, or $340 million a year, which the CDCR now spends on programs,
could ultimately be used to offset these new expenditures. In total, all of these new
strategies combined could save California between $561 million and $684 million a year. See
xiv

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Appendix E for details concerning the Panel’s estimates.
The Panel also believes that if California were to implement its recommendations, the
state would establish an accountable and credible correctional system. The Panel believes
that doing so could minimize the impact of the Federal judiciary in California’s correctional
operations.

Action Plan
The Panel provides a summary of the initial steps that California and the CDCR need to
take to begin moving toward practices that will reduce recidivism. The Panel provides more
details and expands upon its recommendations in Part I of this report. In Appendix K, the
Panel provides the plan for implementing all of its recommendations over a two-year time
period.

Pre-Conditions
□□ Resolve overcrowding—space and safety issues (see Part I and Appendices A and F for
details).
□□ Expand incentives. Some states pay prisoners a nominal wage for program participation.
Others tie sentence reductions to such involvement. California should adopt both
of these practices to provide incentives to offenders for program participation and
completion.

Programming Environment Improvements
□□ Adopt a risk to reoffend assessment tool. While implementing the COMPAS assessment
tool in prison and using it on parole, begin piloting a static risk assessment tool using
the data already collected on offenders when they enter the CDCR. (See Appendix D for
examples.)
□□ Adopt a criminogenic needs assessment tool. Consider adopting an instrument such
as the CSS-M to measure criminal thinking/associates, the HIQ to determine anger
management needs, and the static 99 to identify sex offender needs. Also look at the
TCU or ASI for determining substance abuse needs. (See Appendix D for examples.)
□□ Begin evaluating all new admissions using the adopted risk assessment tool.
□□ Assess offenders whose scores indicate moderate or high risk to reoffend levels using
the selected criminogenic need instruments to determine specific program needs.
□□ Assess offenders whose scores indicate low risk to reoffend levels using work and life
skills assessments to determine specific program needs.
□□ Develop an assessment matrix to determine program assignment based upon offender
scores on the selected risk and need instruments.
□□ Develop policies and procedures to implement a behavior management plan for each
offender.
□□ Assign offenders to programming based on the combination of their risks and needs.
□□ Develop policies that evaluate and assess the outcomes of every program delivered.

xv

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Programming Improvements
□□ Academic, Vocational and Financial. The CDCR has both academic and vocational
programs which have been shown to reduce recidivism. The main need in this area is
additional programming as need outweighs program availability. For a financial or money
management program the CDCR should consider adopting the Federal Deposit Insurance
Commission’s MONEY SMART. There is no cost for this program.
□□ Substance Abuse. The CDCR offers a significant amount of substance abuse treatment.
However, this still is not enough to address the offender need in this area. The CDCR
should develop additional capacity focusing on intensive outpatient treatment programs
as well as more therapeutic communities. These programs will provide treatment for
those with less serious substance abuse problems at a lower cost. It will also allow for
appropriate treatment based upon assessed need.
□□ Aggression, Hostility, Anger, and Violence. The CDCR should review the Conflict Anger
Lifelong Management (CALM) program, which is in six institutions. (Appendix N provides
additional information on the CALM program.) If the CDCR is satisfied with the quality
and outcomes of the program, it should implement it in all of its prisons and community
based facilities. Appendix D provides additional programs to consider.
□□ Criminal Thinking, Behavior, and Associations. The CDCR currently only offers one (1)
community-based program that addresses this area. The CDCR should consider adopting
the National Institute of Corrections’ (NIC) “Thinking for a Change” program for its
prison and parole populations. There is no cost for the program and NIC also provides
complimentary staff training.
□□ Sex Offending. The CDCR currently offers no programming in its regular prison system
for this group of offenders. The CDCR must develop programming in this area.

Conclusion
The Panel believes that this Report to the California State Legislature: A Roadmap for
Effective Offender Programming in California, provides guidance to improve California’s
adult prisoner and parolee rehabilitation programming and to reduce its recidivism rate.
The public deserves and the offenders need the opportunity to receive the rehabilitation
programming and services necessary to help them achieve success on parole.
In this report the Panel advocates a system of identifying needed rehabilitative
programming, implementing those programs, and measuring the fidelity of their
implementation and outcomes in relation to their effectiveness. The Panel believes that
California will realize two important benefits from a public policy perspective: (a) the CDCR
will be more transparent and accountable for a mission that is more in line with the public’s
expectations, and (b) a significantly larger number of the several hundreds of thousands of
prisoners who enter California prisons will return to their communities more prepared to be
law abiding citizens.

xvi

INTRODUCTION

Introduction
Research shows that effective correctional programs reduce recidivism by changing offender
behavior. When correctional agencies provide rehabilitation programs to the appropriate
participants in a manner consistent with evidence-based programming design, offenders
change. Examples of the several kinds of rehabilitation programs that reduce recidivisma
include:
•	
•	
•	
•	

In-prison “therapeutic communities” for drug-involved offenders.b
Vocational education for prisoners and parolees.c
Cognitive behavioral treatment in prison and in the community.d
Intensive community supervision programs that emphasize the delivery of rehabilitation
treatment services, not just surveillance.e

Based on the reduced recidivism that offenders experience with these programs, other
states, including Kansas, Michigan, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Washington, offer a full
menu of rehabilitation programs and services to their offender populations.f
But California does not. Although the state spends hundreds of millions of dollars on adult
offender programming, it does not offer its offenders a full menu of rehabilitative programs
targeted toward reducing their recidivism. Perhaps this is why California’s adult offender
recidivism rate is one of the highest in the nation (Fisher, 2005).
We believe that there are several factors that contribute to the state’s rehabilitation
programming problems. Some of these factors have to do with the nature of the programs
themselves, while others have to do with aspects external to the programming environment.

a	
Aos, Miller, & Drake (2006); Petersilia (2005); MacKenzie (2006); and Friedman, Taxman, &
Henderson (2007).
b	
Inciardi, Martin, & Butzin (2004); Harrison & Martin (2001); Taxman & Bouffard (2000);
Martin, Butzin, Saum, & Inciardi, (1999); Simpson, Wexler, & Inciardi (1999a), (1999b); Inciardi,
Martin, Butzin, Hooper, & Harrison (1997).
c	
Gerber & Fritsch (1994).
d	
Andrews, Zinger, Hoge, Bonta, Gendreau, & Cullen (1990); Andrews & Bonta (1998); Lipsey &
Wilson (1993); Landenberger & Lipsey (2005); National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) (2006); NIDA
(1999); Simpson, Joe, & Broome (2002).
e	
Petersilia & Turner (1993a); (1993b); Taxman (2002); Marlowe (2003); Thanner & Taxman
(2003).
f	
Werholtz (2007); Schrantz (2007).
1

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

A Summary of Our Findings
•	 The state of overcrowding in CDCR prison facilities makes it difficult for
offenders to access rehabilitation programs. Because it does not have enough
room to house its offenders, the CDCR uses previously intended program space
as living space for prisoners. Additionally, frequent lockdowns cause program
cancellations.
•	 The CDCR treats offenders who successfully complete rehabilitation
programs and positively manage their behaviors in roughly the same
manner as those who do not. The CDCR does not have sufficient positive
reinforcements for offenders who successfully complete rehabilitation programming
and who comply with prison rules and parole conditions.
•	 The CDCR does not assign offenders to programs based on risk-needs
assessments. In most cases, the CDCR assigns offenders to rehabilitation
programs on a first-come, first-served basis. The CDCR is currently piloting a
risk-needs assessment tool with its prison population. The CDCR does use a riskneeds assessment tool with its parole population, and is currently in the process of
validating the instrument.
•	 The CDCR does not have automated behavior management (case) plans for
each of its offenders. Because it does not use risk-needs assessments to assign
offenders to programs, the CDCR also has not developed an integrated behavior
management plan for each of its offenders. Additionally, because the CDCR lacks
an adequate technology infrastructure, even if it were to create case plans for each
of its offenders, it would not be able to share the information between institutions
and divisions in an automated fashion.
•	 The CDCR does not offer a sufficient quantity of evidence-based
rehabilitation programs designed to reduce recidivism to its adult
offenders. The CDCR does not offer a core set of rehabilitation programs to its
adult offenders. The CDCR does offer a large amount of programs and activities
to its adult offenders, but not enough of these are evidence-based rehabilitation
programs.
•	 The CDCR does not always measure the quality or effectiveness of its adult
offender programs. The CDCR does not always measure program outcomes.
Additionally because it does not assess risks and needs for all incoming prisoners
or exiting parolees it cannot measure program effectiveness in reducing recidivism.
•	 The CDCR has begun to focus on offender reentry issues and initiatives,
but it needs to expand those efforts. The CDCR has recently created a $54
million dollar focus on reentry initiatives. The CDCR needs to expand this focus
to include fortifying informal community support structures and increasing the
role that family members and other support structure members play in offender
programming.
•	 The CDCR does not have a graduated parole sanctions policy to provide
community-based alternatives to incarceration for parolees who violate
their parole conditions. California laws constrain the CDCR to incarcerate parole
violators who may be better served by community-based sanctions. CDCR parole
agents do not have structured guidance as to how to deal with parole violators.

2

INTRODUCTION

California’s Historical Perspective
The complexity of California’s correctional problems mean that solving them will not be
easy. Others have tried in California and met with mixed results. Since 1990, more than a
dozen commissions and other groups have proposed solutions to the problems in California’s
adult correctional system.g Yet the problems persist. To understand why, it is helpful to
examine certain aspects of California’s recent correctional history. Figure 1 shows the record
of California’s recidivism rates from 1977 through 2004. In this figure, one can see that
California’s recidivism rates (measured as offenders returned-to-prison) have risen steadily
since the late 70s.

Historical One & Two Year Recidivism Rate with Annual Return to Prison Rate:
1977-2004

Recidivism

Return Rate

70.0%

100.0
90.0

60.0%
80.0
50.0%

70.0
60.0

40.0%

50.0
30.0%

40.0
30.0

20.0%

20.0
10.0%
One-Year Recidivism

Two-Year Recidivism

10.0

Annual Return Rate

04

03

20

02

20

01

20

00

20

99

20

98

19

97

19

96

19

95

19

94

19

93

19

92

19

91

19

90

19

89

19

88

19

87

19

86

19

85

19

84

19

83

19

82

19

81

19

80

19

79

19

19

19

19

78

0.0

77

0.0%

Year

Figure 1: California Department of Corrections Historical Recidivism Rates, 1977-2004h

What does this mean? What has caused this dramatic increase in California’s recidivism
rate? To answer those questions, we first need to define what we mean by the term
“recidivism rate.” Recidivism rates are typically measured by tracking the activities of a
group (“cohort”) of prisoners who were released in a given period for several years after
their releases. Traditionally, recidivism rates are based on three-year tracking periods.
During these tracking periods if an offender is returned to correctional custody for any
reason, he or she is considered to have recidivated. Returning to correctional custody
includes (a) being sent back to state prison for violating a parole condition and (b) being
arrested for a new crime and being sentenced to a new term in state prison. The recidivism
rates in Figure 1 include both of these circumstances. For our purposes, we view offenders
who have been returned to prison for parole violations differently than offenders returning
to prison because they committed new crimes.
g	
See Appendix A.
h	
The recidivism rate shown in this chart is based on “first releases to parole.” This means
that the cohort consists of prisoners who were experiencing their first release to parole and does not
include parole violators who were being re-released. Excluding parole violators decreases the overall
return-to-prison rate.
3

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

We believe that most accurate measure of recidivism is defined is ex-offenders being
returned to state prison because they have been convicted of committing new crimes. As
we will discuss later in the report, we believe that offenders who violate parole or probation
conditions should be considered or treated differently than those who commit new crimes.
Having defined recidivism both in terms of how it has been measured in Figure 1, and
how we believe it should be measured, we believe that the greatest contributor to
California’s high adult offender recidivism rate has been California’s shifting public
sentiment. California’s voting public and lawmakers have been chiefly responsible for
creating the correctional crisis that California is now experiencing.
This is not to excuse the offenders. These men and women have been found guilty of
violating the laws of the state. They have been convicted of offenses ranging from burglary
to drug possession to homicide. They have destroyed the lives of many of their victims,
their victims’ families, their own families, and, of course, themselves. They are responsible
for their actions and the consequences of those actions. While offenders must be held
accountable for their actions, they are not responsible for determining the consequences
of those actions. The state correctional system is. And the state correctional system is a
political construct, meaning that ultimately California’s citizens determine the consequences
of crime in the state. They also determine, through the political process, what resources the
state will spend in dealing with the consequences of crime.
In the late 1970s, California began to “get tough on crime,” which led to the passage of
its current Determinate Sentencing Act (DSL) in 1976. This law eliminated much of the
discretion in sentencing and has led to more offenders being locked up for longer periods
of time. Continuing in the get tough on crime theme, in 1994, Californians approved
the “Three Strikes and You’re Out” ballot initiative (Proposition 184), which changed the
law so that offenders convicted of three felonies would effectually be sentenced to life
imprisonment, resulting in more offenders being locked up for longer periods of time. In
fact, between the passage of the DSL in 1976 and 2007, California has passed 80 additional
laws resulting in “tougher” sentences (Little Hoover Commission, 2007). These laws have
led to more offenders being locked up for longer periods of time.

California’s Determinate Sentencing Act (DSL)
Perhaps one of the most significant long-term causes of California’s explosive growth in its prison population
was the passage of California’s Determinate Sentencing Act (DSL) in 1976, whereby offenders sentenced to
state prison would receive a set term from the judge and would not be subject to release by a parole board.
As a result of this change, prisoners were no longer provided with incentives to manage their behaviors and
complete their rehabilitation programs to earn earlier releases. Instead they were required to serve their
entire sentences, minus any time they received as credit for participation in work incentive programs. This
change in law was intended to address the ineffective prison rehabilitation programs and claims of disparate
treatment lodged by some of California’s prisoners. But after several decades of experience under this law,
the evidence shows that the DSL has not achieved its desired effect, as sentencing patterns show great
variation by county and even courtroom (Little Hoover Commission, 2007). No longer able to earn early
releases from a parole board for good behavior, offenders stopped managing their behavior positively, which
led to increased incidences of violence in prisons, which led to an increased number of lockdowns, which led
to less access to rehabilitation programming for prisoners. Additionally, as offenders were no longer eligible
to earn early release credits for participation in rehabilitation programs, they stopped attending them. As
offenders stopped attending programs and California’s budget priorities changed, California’s elected officials
began cutting funding for rehabilitations in prisons.

4

INTRODUCTION

California’s correctional agency responded to the public’s get tough on crime sentiment (and
their lawmaker’s directions) by building more and larger prisons to “warehouse” the ever
increasing numbers of offenders being sentenced under California’s tougher crime laws. As
Figure 2 shows, the CDCR is currently responsible for providing services to 319,492 adult
offenders in its prison and parole systems—172,385 (54%) are located in the CDCR prisons,
123,781 (39%) are on parole supervision, and 23,326 (7%) are in other populations,
including non-CDCR facilities or programs (e.g., Federal prison or jail).

Figure 2: California’s Adult Offender Population

Source: CDCR (Weekly Population Report, April 23, 2007)

5

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Californians got tough on crime and more and more offenders went to prison. During this
time period, the public spent more on incarcerating offenders and less on rehabilitating
them. As Figure 3, shows, the percentage of money spent on rehabilitation programming
(“Employment/Training”) for prisoners is 5%, compared to the 45% that is spent on
“Security.”
Figure 3: California Annual Costs to Incarcerate a Prisoner

Source: California Legislative Analyst’s Office, January 31, 2007

Putting the “R” into CDC-R
Research shows that public sentiment is now moving in a different direction. The voting
public is clearly in favor of a move away from the “punishment only” model that dominated
California sentencing and corrections polices for more than a generation. For example, a poll
commissioned by the National Council on Crime and Delinquency (NCCD) and conducted
by the Field Research Corporation found that most Californians (63%) favored using state
funds to rehabilitate non-violent offenders both during their incarceration periods and after
they were released (Krisberg, Craine, and Marchionna, 2004). By contrast, only 8% of those
surveyed preferred a system based solely on punishing offenders. A clear majority (59%)
felt that the experience of prisons increased recidivism and 67% believed that the lack of
appropriate life skills is the major factor in the continued criminal behavior of parolees. A
more recent national poll by NCCD and Zogby International found results similar to those
from the California survey (Krisberg and Marchionna, 2006). A national sample of likely
voters felt that it is very important to provide prisoner reentry programs that emphasized
job training (81%), drug treatment (79%), mental health services (70%), and access to
affordable housing (59%).
In both polls, the public expressed interest in expanding rehabilitation programming
for offenders. Citizens now believe that rehabilitation programs for offenders can make
communities safer and will cost less in the long term.
In response to the change in public sentiment and shifting legislative priorities, in 2005,
California changed the name of its correctional agency from the California Department of
Corrections (CDC) to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR).
Along with the new name came a new mission statement: “To improve public safety through
evidence-based crime prevention and recidivism reduction strategies.”
6

INTRODUCTION

At long last, it appeared that California was back in the business of providing rehabilitation
programming to its adult offenders. But, as Table 1 shows, nearly 50% of all California
prisoners, who were released in 2006, were not assigned to any rehabilitation program,
which might improve their behaviors, or any job assignments, which might improve their
life skills, during their most recent prison sentences.
Table 1: Number of Program and-or Job Assignments for 2006 Releases
# of Assignments

% of Offenders

0

49.3

1

21.5

2

16.3

3

8.2

4

3.5

5+

1.1

Source: CDCR

Table 1 illustrates that despite the change in public sentiment and despite the new mission
of the CDCR; almost half of adult prisoners in the California state prison system were
completely idle during their latest prison incarcerations.

The Panel and Its Report
In response to the public’s desire for offenders to be rehabilitated, the Governor, the
Legislature, and the Judiciary have called for improvements in the quantity and quality of
rehabilitation programs available to California’s adult offenders. This will require doing things
differently in all areas where adult offenders are concerned—the CDCR, the Legislature, the
Judiciary, Law Enforcement, and the Community. It will also require a correctional climate
change—from primarily custodial only to a more balanced perspective that incorporates
“rehabilitation” into its mission.
In November 2004, the CDCR developed a two-phase strategic plan to reform the agency.
Phase 1, which was completed in July 2005, consisted of a major restructuring of the entire
agency, including the integration of the former California Youth Authority into the CDCR.
Phase 2, which is currently in process, includes providing greater staff training, continuing
to seek out community partnerships, and using evidence-based measures and national
standards to evaluate the relative strengths or weakness of specific programs.
The CDCR created the Expert Panel on Adult Offender Reentry and Recidivism Reduction
(the Panel) to assist with the phase 2 initiatives, specifically to:
1.	 Review the current programs being offered by the CDCR to its adult offenders and
comment on their effectiveness for reducing recidivism, and
2.	 Make recommendations as to how the CDCR could improve its program offerings, as well
as the organizational culture and environment of the system in which they operate, to
better reduce California’s adult offender recidivism rate.
The Panel was established by the CDCR under the legislative authorization found in the
Budget Act of 2006-2007, and is composed of nationally recognized experts in the field
of corrections and includes experienced correctional agency administrators and leading
academic researchers.
The Panel created two sub-committees: the Program Review Sub-Committee—to review
the current program offerings, and the Model Program Sub-Committee—to provide
7

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

recommendations on improving the current program offerings and the system in which
these programs would operate. Our Report to the California State Legislature: A Roadmap
for Effective Offender Programming in California, is made up of two parts:
•	 Part I: The Roadmap, begins with a discussion of the barriers that must be dealt
with, e.g., overcrowding and the prevalent “custodial” culture. It then provides several
recommendations for improving the quality and quantity of the programs being offered
to California state prisoners and parolees, as well as the measures that need to be taken
to improve the system in which these programs operate.
•	 Part II: The Program Reviews, provides our high-level review of 11 of the 34
programs that the CDCR believes are designed to rehabilitate offenders and reduce
recidivism. This section begins with a baseline inventory of all adult offender programs
that the CDCR is currently operating and concludes with a review of 11 specific CDCRnominated recidivism reduction (or rehabilitation) programs.
In the Roadmap, we present recommendations based on research that represents a broad
range of disciplines including rehabilitation, education, corrections, and organizational
development. We also include proposals that within the profession are regarded as best
practices and are being used by corrections agencies in other states that have faced
situations and challenges similar to California’s.
In the Program Reviews, we used the California Program Assessment Process (CPAP)i to rate
the 11 programs against scales that measured whether or not they possessed the elements
that would indicate the likelihood of their being able to reduce recidivism.
We believe this report reflects the best of current correctional thinking and practice.

i	
In 2005, Dr. Ryken Grattet, Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Davis, who
served during 2005-06, as acting Assistant Secretary, Office of Research, CDCR, Jesse Jannetta,
M.P.P., and Dr. Jeff Lin, researchers from the University of California, Irvine’s Center for EvidenceBased Corrections developed the CPAP.
8

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Part I—The Roadmap
In this section of the report, we provide detailed explanations of our findings and
recommend solutions to the problems that we have identified. We begin with the factors
external to the programming environment that are contributing to California’s programming
problems and conclude with the internal factors.

Factors External to the Programming Environment
Finding—The state of overcrowding in CDCR prison facilities makes it difficult for
offenders to access rehabilitation programs.
The first aspect of programming that we examined was the physical context. Physical
context includes such issues as program space (e.g., treatment beds, classroom seats, etc.)
and institutional safety (of program providers, CDCR staff, and offender participants). CDCR
facilities were built to hold 100,000 prisoners; however, at the time of this report, the CDCR
was currently housing 172,385 prisoners in its prison institutions—California prisons are
operating at 172% capacity.
According to the CDCR, 18,000 prisoners are being housed in spaces designed for programs
(Hysen, 2007). This is consistent with what we observed when we visited California’s prisons
and what we were told by the administrators and staff members working at these facilities.
Not only does overcrowding have a negative impact on programming but, according to
documents provided to the court by CDCR Chief Deputy Secretary Scott Kernan (2007),
“housing inmates in non-traditional quarters presents serious safety concerns for both
inmates and correctional staff. The overcrowding of CDCR facilities has led to increased
numbers [of] infectious disease outbreaks and riots and disturbances system-wide.”
These incidences of violence and other negative consequences of overcrowding degrade the
CDCR’s ability to consistently operate rehabilitation programs in the prison environment.
While lockdowns and controlled movements allow the CDCR to increase the safety of
its correctional officers and prisoners, when wardens enact these security measures,
they cancel all programming in the affected prison areas. Table 2 provides a summary
of the CDCR’s adult prison lockdowns in 2006. We provide a detailed list of prison safety
improvement recommendations in Appendix F.

9

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table 2: CDCR Adult Institution Lockdown Summary, 2006
Mission-Based, Facility Type*

Number of LockdownsControlled Movements

Average Days in
Lockdown

Events over 60
Days

Calendar Year 2006
General Population Levels II & III

169

12

6

General Population Levels III & IV

114

18

5

High Security & Transition Housing

134

7

17

Female Institutions

32

3

0

Source: CDCR
*Does not include Reception Centers

On the parole side, a legacy of budget and policy decisions has created a situation where
parole agents have unmanageable case loads of parolees to supervise and communitybased program providers have more offenders needing treatment than they can treat. As
Petersilia (2005) has shown, fully two-thirds of more than 120,000 California parolees only
see their parole agents once every six weeks. This infrequent visitation schedule causes us
to wonder how effective this system is at reducing recidivism.

Recommendation 1—Reduce overcrowding in its prison facilities and parole
offices.

We recommend that the CDCR reduce overcrowding in its prison facilities to make it easier
for offenders to access rehabilitation programming. This will also create a safer environment
for correctional officers, program providers, and prisoners. On the parole side, California
needs to either reduce the numbers of parolees to which it provides services or increase the
funding to the CDCR Parole Division and community-based program and service providers.
We do not believe the only answer to reducing overcrowding is to build more prisons.
Experience from other states demonstrates that at some point those responsible for
authorizing and funding adult institutions come to the conclusion that they can no longer
afford to keep building more prisons. The expenditures become too costly and can force
states to the margins of bankruptcy. With California already spending more than $10 billion
a year on its correctional system, we believe that it is only a matter of time before this state
is forced to consider alternatives besides prison building to solve its overcrowding problem.
Solving the overcrowding problem is not the mission of this Panel. To that end, we direct
the reader to Appendix A for specific recommendations provided by other groups as to how
California may potentially reduce its correctional system overcrowding. Nonetheless, some
of the evidence-based programming recommendations that we make will potentially reduce
the numbers of prisoners in California prisons. We provide a detailed discussion in Appendix
E.

10

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Finding—The CDCR treats offenders who successfully complete rehabilitation programs
and positively manage their behaviors in roughly the same manner as those who do
not.
One of the best ways to shape behavior is to provide positive rewards for people when
they engage in positive activities. In the correctional context this means that if California
wants its offenders to participate in rehabilitation programming, it must motivate them to
complete rehabilitation programs and positively manage their behaviors.
We believe that the CDCR’s current culture is focused primarily on control and punishment
and secondarily on rehabilitation. While control and punishment are understandably very
important in a correctional setting, correctional agencies need to balance the different
aspects of their missions. They need to focus an appropriate amount of attention on the
security and order of the prison, as well as rehabilitation.
In the case of the CDCR, we spoke to several wardens who were interested in providing
more rehabilitation programs to their prisoners. However, because of California’s tough on
crime laws, including its Determinate Sentencing Act (DSL), California’s adult offenders are
minimally motivated to participate in and complete rehabilitation programs. In fact, some
legislative features actually discourage prisoners from program participation. For example,
California does not pay its prisoners who are enrolled in rehabilitation programs (e.g.,
substance abuse, education), but it does pay its prisoners who have work assignments.
Prison hourly pay ranges from $0.08 (prison laborer) to $0.95 (Prison Industries lead
worker). Several other states (e.g., Pennsylvania and Ohio) pay prisoners for participating in
either rehabilitation programs or work assignments.

Recommendation 2—Enact legislation to expand its system of positive
reinforcements for offenders who successfully complete their rehabilitation
program requirements, comply with institutional rules in prison, and fulfill
their parole obligations in the community.

On May 2, 2007, California enacted AB 900, the Public Safety and Offender Rehabilitation
Services Act of 2007. This legislation requires the CDCR to “determine and implement
a system of incentives to increase inmate participation in, and completion of, academic
and vocational education [programming].” We believe that with this legislation, California
is moving in the right direction toward improving its state of correctional rehabilitation.
Additionally, California enacted Senate Bill 1453 in 2006. This legislation allows the CDCR
to discharge offenders after they successfully complete in-prison drug treatment followed
by 150 days of residential drug treatment in the community. We recommend that California
enact the necessary legislation to expand its correctional incentive system to include all of
the rehabilitation programs that the CDCR offers to its offenders in prison and on parole.
In accordance with the directives of AB 900, we recommend that the CDCR implement
those positive reinforcements that do not require additional legislation. For example, the
CDCR could expand visitation privileges, locate prisoners in prisons closer to their homes,
provide long distance phone calls, and issue vouchers for the prison canteens. Parole offices
could offer similar reinforcements to parolees who successfully complete rehabilitation
programming in the community. Positive reinforcements increase motivation levels, build
morale, and improve behaviors. If the CDCR incorporates these kinds of reinforcements into
its culture and programs, it will accelerate the integration of rehabilitation into its systems.
11

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Research by Wright, Caspi, Moffitt, and Paternoster (2004) and Taxman, Soule, and Gelb
(1999) determined that punishment, particularly severe punishment, does not deter
behavior and that it might actually cause offenders to be more defiant. Defiant offenders
do not willingly participate in the rehabilitation programming that they need. According to
Andrews and Bonta (1998) to effectively influence behavior there must be a ratio of four
rewards to one consequence, since rewards serve to “shape” responses to positive actions.
At the correctional system level, if correctional agencies do not motivate offenders to
complete rehabilitation programs, fewer offenders will be willing to participate in those
programs. At the program level, those programs that do not have positive reinforcement
structures or capacities will not effectively shape offender behaviors.
2a. Award earned credits to offenders who complete any rehabilitation program in prison
and on parole. While California currently provides earned credits to offenders: (a) who the
CDCR assigns to conservation camps to fight fires and perform other public service tasks
(the California Work Incentive Program or WIP) and (b) offenders who participate in the
Bridging Educational Program, offenders who complete other rehabilitation programs do
not receive earned credits. With the enactment of AB 900, we anticipate that the CDCR will
soon award earned credits for offenders who complete academic and vocational education
programs. We recommend, therefore, that California enact laws that would allow the CDCR
to award earned credits to offenders who complete any rehabilitation program, such as
substance abuse treatment or life skills development, in accordance with the terms of their
behavior management plans. These earned credits would provide motivation for offenders
to participate in and successfully complete their assigned rehabilitation programs to earn
reduced sentences. Offenders who participate in quality evidence-based prison programming
have lower recidivism rates. We believe that the public safety benefits of adopting this
recommendation will be a vast improvement over California’s current practice of releasing
offenders who have not completed rehabilitation programming.
2b. Replace Work Incentive Program (WIP) credits with statutorily-based good time
incentive credits. Most prisoners in the CDCR are serving sentences that were handed down
under California’s Determinate Sentencing Act (DSL). California’s DSL allows offenders to
earn, with some exceptions, as much as a day-for-day “good time” rate (50% reduction),
but only if they are able to receive WIP credits. While most offenders (with the exception
of those serving 3- and 2-Strike sentences, life sentences, and those convicted of violent
crimes) are eligible to receive the day-for-day WIP credits, because of program capacity
limits, they cannot access the WIP-specific programs. In most cases, offenders are assigned
to WIP-specific programs on a first-come, first-served basis, which is contrary to the tenet
of assigning the right offender to the right program. We recommend, therefore, that the
Legislature pass a law that would allow the CDCR to grant good time credits to those
offenders who comply with institutional rules in prison. These good time credits would
provide motivation for prisoners to manage their behaviors in prison to earn reduced
sentences.

12

PART I—THE ROADMAP

2c. Implement an earned discharge parole supervision strategy for all parolees released
from prison after serving a period of incarceration for an offense other than those listed
as serious and violent under CPC 1192.7(c) and 667.5(c) criteria. We recommend that
California enact the necessary laws that authorize the CDCR to award parolees earned
discharge credits according to the following schedule and criteria:
•	 Low risk to reoffend, non-violent parolees could reduce six months off their periods of
parole supervision if they actively engaged in community services, remained violationfree, and completed all payments of victim restitution.
•	 Moderate risk to reoffend, non-violent parolees could be discharged from supervision
if, at the end of 12 months, they have achieved stability in housing and employment;
successfully completed all treatment requirements addressing their criminogenic needs,
have maintained continuous violation-free parole, and have completed all payments of
victim restitution.
•	 Higher risk to reoffend, non-violent parolees who are complying with their treatment
requirements and who remain arrest-free for the first year could earn one month off
their total parole supervision periods for each arrest-free month they have in the second
year.
An earned discharge parole system provides an incentive system that rewards desired
behavior and encourages parolees to earn early discharges from parole. The earned
discharge strategy is an evidence-based practice that reduces recidivism. Ultimately,
agencies that implement earned discharge parole strategies motivate their parolees
to participate in their own supervision successes. This strategy will help reduce prison
overcrowding as fewer parolees return to prison for parole violations or new criminal
convictions.
Please refer to Appendix E for our estimates of the costs and benefits associated with
implementing these recommendations.

13

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Clearing the Road for Rehabilitation
Before addressing the internal factors, we provide preparatory steps that California must
take to make it possible to improve rehabilitation programming in its adult offender
correctional system.

Take an Integrated “Systems” Approach
Changing the way corrections agencies do business is no easy task. Improving rehabilitation
programs to reduce recidivism is not simply a matter of identifying those evidence-based
programs that produce results. Rather, the greater challenge lies in changing existing
systems to support the programs so that they can be effectively implemented.j This requires
energetic leadership that is willing to place equal focus on:
•	 Evidence-based principles in program and service delivery,
•	 Organizational re-engineering, and
•	 Collaboration within and between organizations.
These three essential components are an integrated systems model for correctional
agency reform. First, evidence-based principles form the basis for effectively managing
and delivering quality rehabilitation programs and services. Next, political and correctional
agency leaders must engage in several organizational re-engineering tasks to successfully
move from traditional warehousing or custodial practices to evidence-based rehabilitation
principles and practices. And finally, collaboration with stakeholders creates more
comprehensive and continuous systems changes at both the state and community levels.k
We were pleased to see that the CDCR leadership team has already incorporated some
elements of all three of these focus areas into its strategic plan. The CDCR has (a) made a
commitment to use evidence-based measures and national standards in its programming,
(b) begun re-organizing its departments and re-engineering its processes, and (c) made a
commitment to seek out and expand its community partnerships. Our intention is to help
the CDCR move to the next level of rehabilitation as it considers its missions and values;
gains new knowledge and skills; adjusts its infrastructures to support the new ways of doing
business; and transforms its staff and organizational culture.

Consider Three Important Concepts
The person reading this report should keep these things in mind:
•	 Change in organizations takes time to effect (2-5 years).
•	 Correctional agencies are part of larger communities.
•	 Only qualified and appropriately trained staff members should deliver programs.
j	
Taxman (1998); Sachwald & Tesluk (2205); Friedmann, Taxman, & Henderson (2007);
Simpson & Flynn (in press); Simpson (2002).
k	
Young, Taxman, & Byrne (2003); Byrne, Taxman, & Young (2003).
14

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Correctional Change Takes Time
Because correctional change involves often competing (or at least differing) stakeholders—
citizens, administrators, offenders, corrections officers, parole officers, families, legislators,
etc.—it often takes a long time, at least two to five years, for agencies to achieve consistent
and sustainable results. Part of this is due to the amount of time needed to build consensus
among all parties. But an even greater contributor to the extended time factor is that
rehabilitation involves influencing human behavior. Because of this, correctional agencies
need to be deliberate and careful when introducing new rehabilitation programs to their
offender populations or when modifying existing programs.
Many correctional programs yield poor results not because of program design flaws or
targeting mistakes, but because these programs were implemented without a concurrent
commitment to measuring and maintaining the quality of these programs. It takes time to
continuously measure and improve the quality and delivery of programs. But we believe this
is time well-spent. Such an approach makes it easier for offenders to achieve the desired
programming outcomes—reduced reoffending rates—and prevents correctional programming
from deviating from the evidence-based principles that are effective.

Correctional Agencies Are Part of the Community
Most people forget that (except for those serving life without parole or death penalty
sentences) all offenders come from and will one day return to the community. One needs
to view corrections through the lens of prisoner reentry to understand the importance of
rehabilitation programming. As Jeremy Travis (2005) has reminded us, “they all come back.”
In 2006, the CDCR admitted nearly 142,000 persons to prison and released nearly the same
number—134,000. The average prison sentence served in California is 25 months. The
fact that the majority of prisoners go back to their communities relatively quickly means
that public safety is the responsibility of all community members, not just the correctional
agency. When correctional agencies deliver appropriate rehabilitation treatment programs
in prison and then follow those programs up with aftercare programs and services in the
community, they are more likely to reduce recidivism two to three times more than when
delivering prison-based programs alone.l Other research shows that correctional agencies
can enhance the effectiveness of their rehabilitation programming by actively collaborating
with communities.m Additionally, research by Bloom, Owen, and Covington (2003) shows
that female offenders need the assistance of their family members, friends, and community
support agencies (e.g., substance abuse, mental health, housing, etc.) if they are to sustain
the treatment gains they achieved through participating in rehabilitation programming in
prison.
To become productive and contributing members of society, ex-offenders must stay sober,
find work, and have safe places to live. An individual who is high, out of work, and living
on the streets is not likely to succeed. California must make a financial commitment to
help previously incarcerated persons obtain access to and pay for the services they need
to be clean, sober, and employable. Without this investment in offenders’ survival issues,
investments in prison and parole programming alone will not produce the desired recidivism
reduction outcomes.

l	
Aos et. al. (2006); Simpson et. al. (1999a); (1999b); Taxman, Young, & Byrne (2004); Byrne
& Taxman (2006).
m	
Sampson & Laub (1993); Taxman et. al. (2004).
15

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Qualified Staff Matters
Often the difference between success and failure in a program is determined by the
staff. In correctional settings there are two general and sometimes overlapping types of
staff: (a) security-supervision staff and (b) rehabilitation treatment-programming staff.
Both staff types must come to respect the role the other plays in the delivery of
effective rehabilitation interventions. And, both staff types must work together to
ensure that both security-safety and rehabilitation programming objectives are
accomplished in a manner that appears seamless to the offender. Most agencies
need to train their staff members to accomplish these cross-objectives tasks, as they are
not normally part of agency traditions or cultures. However, doing so will have a big impact
on further aligning the organization’s mission to its daily operational practices.
Another important issue is staff qualifications. To be an effective teacher, mental health
counselor-clinician, vocational educator, or substance abuse counselor-clinician, the staff
member must meet the minimum requirements of state certification for providing these
vital services. Correctional agencies cannot allow any shortcuts in this area. Requiring staff
members to obtain appropriate certifications helps agencies ensure that their staff members
learn the techniques that will assist offenders in progressing through their rehabilitation
programs. The CDCR must ensure that it hires high-caliber professionals, who are capable
of delivering quality rehabilitation programs and services in the demanding environments of
prisons and parole.
Agencies that are committed to rehabilitating offenders continuously develop the technical
and organizational development skills of their staff members. We cannot emphasize enough
the importance of continuous staff development as a best practice in the corrections
industry. Staff members are the delivery agents of rehabilitation programs and services,
and, therefore, are critical to programming success.

Develop Gender and Age Responsivity
Researchers recognize that “generic one size fits all” programming does not achieve uniform
recidivism reduction results across special populations. Correctional agencies need to pay
more attention to these populations, such as female and youthful offenders, to improve the
rehabilitation treatment results of these groups.
Correctional agencies have paid minimal attention to female offenders in the areas of
predicting their risks to reoffend or the criminogenic needs related to their criminal
behaviors. With female offenders representing only 7% of the U.S. prison population,
prevailing correctional policies tend to be based on assessment instruments and
rehabilitation programs that are geared towards male offenders. For example, the risk
assessment tools used by most corrections agencies are largely based on male theories
of crime (e.g., social learning and control theories). Bloom et. al. (2003) found that these
tools generally ignore the context of female criminality and disregard female-specific risks to
reoffend and those factors related to female criminal behaviors.
The same is true for youthful offenders (18-25 year olds). Correctional agencies have
geared their assessment instruments and rehabilitation programming offerings primarily
toward males in their mid-30s. While less information is readily available on the youthful
offender population, California will need to pay more attention to this group as it moves
towards a model of reducing recidivism through effective rehabilitation programming.

16

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Gender-Responsive Programming
Gender-responsive approaches are multidimensional and based on theoretical perspectives
that acknowledge explicitly female offender pathways into the criminal justice system.
These approaches address social and cultural factors, as well as therapeutic interventions
and provide the foundation for gender-responsive policies and practices (Bloom et. al).

Profile of California’s Female Offenders
The average female offender in California is in her late thirties. She is likely to have been a victim of physical
or sexual abuse early in life. She is addicted to drugs, often has mental health issues, and most likely was
sent to prison for using drugs or stealing to support a drug habit. She also is likely to be a mother and
frequently the primary caregiver of young children (Little Hoover Commission, 2004).
The following CDCR data provide an overview of female offenders in California:
•	
•	
•	
•	
•	
•	

At year end (12/20/06), 11,492 adult females were incarcerated in CDCR facilities.
The majority (65% or almost 7,000) of all offenders were convicted of non-violent offenses (property
and drug violations). Another 35% percent were convicted of property crimes, with drug crimes
representing 30% of the female population.
Less than 15% of the female prison population are second or third strikers, indicating a shorter criminal
career. As of December 2006, only 80 women were serving third strike sentences.
While in custody, female prisoners continue to be non-violent, with the majority (68%) of all offenders
classified in Level I-II designations. Another 41% percent are classified as Level I, with 27% classified
as Level II.
The median time served in prison by incarcerated women is 13 months.
The recidivism rate for female felons within two years after release onto parole was 39% as compared
with 52% for male felons.

The current generation of criminogenic needs assessment instruments that correctional
agencies in California use does not adequately measure female offenders’ needs. The
emerging research on gender-responsive strategies for female offenders provides strong
support for correctional agencies to develop assessment instruments that include genderspecific needs. Since female offenders’ pathways differ from male offenders, female
offenders have additional needs that correctional programming should address to provide
female offenders with the means to become and remain productive citizens. These needs
include: treatment for abuse, violence, trauma, family relationships, substance abuse,
and co-occurring disorders. Our references to “criminogenic needs” in our programming
improvement recommendations do not refer comprehensively to the specific needs of
female offenders.
A great deal of work has been and is being done within the CDCR to bring its programming
of female offenders in line with the new theoretical perspectives and research findings in
this area. Appendix G highlights the significant efforts the CDCR is making to continuously
improve the assessment and programming of female offenders under its jurisdiction.
For the most part, the recommendations in this report apply equally to male and female
offender populations. However, in those cases where research indicates the need to treat
female offenders differently, we propose separate recommendations.

17

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Age Responsive Programming
Young adults—18-25 years old—present certain challenges for any correctional system.
Many of these youthful offenders have previously been in the juvenile justice system,
and many of them do not have strong, pro-social support systems in the community.
Developmentally, they are in the period of their lives where they have not fully matured
psychologically, sociologically, or biologically. This immaturity negatively affects their
decision-making, executive functioning, and responses to rehabilitation programming
efforts. Because of their previous involvements in the juvenile and-or adult justice systems,
they often have not been exposed to the resources in life that tend to guide individuals,
such as strong familial relationships, education and-or work, and long-term goals.
Neither California, nor any other state in the nation has devoted much attention to this
age group. The average age of offenders participating in rehabilitation programs nationally
is 35, which criminologists have acknowledged is towards the end of an offender’s active
years of criminal behavior. Assessment instruments in existence are not sensitive to
the characteristics of this age group, nor have many correctional agencies developed
rehabilitation programming for them. To be effective in turning the tide and keeping these
youthful offenders from returning to prison, California needs to examine, develop, and
enhance its programming for the approximately 21,000 youthful offenders that are admitted
to the CDCR every year.

18

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Factors Internal to the Programming Environment
In this section of the report, we provide several recommendations that address the internal
causes of California’s rehabilitation programming problems. We base our recommendations
on eight key evidence-based principles and practices (Figure 4). Our recommendations
operationalize these principles and practices so that California can deliver a core set of
effective rehabilitation programs to its adult offenders.
Figure 4: Eight Evidence-Based Principles and Practices
1.	 Target Highest Risk Offenders. Correctional agencies should provide rehabilitation treatment
programming to their highest risk to reoffend prisoners and parolees first. Provide other types of
programs to low risk to reoffend prisoners or parolees.
2.	 Assess Offenders Needs. Correctional agencies should assess the criminogenic needs (dynamic risk
factors) of their offenders using research-based instruments. The goal of programming should be to
diminish needs.
3.	 Design Responsivity into Programming. Programming should account for individual offender
characteristics that interfere with or facilitate an offender’s ability and motivation to learn.
4.	 Develop Behavior Management Plans. Individual programming should occur in the context of a
larger behavior management plan developed for each offender, which will include the priority and
sequence of treatment programs, the means for measuring treatment gains, and the goals for a crimefree lifestyle.
5.	 Deliver Treatment Programs using Cognitive-Based Strategies. Research has consistently
determined that cognitive-behavioral treatments are more effective than any other form of correctional
intervention because these treatment types address criminal thinking and behaviors in offenders. The
therapeutic community treatment model, which uses cognitive-based treatment strategies, is a highly
effective method for treating alcohol and other drug dependencies.
6.	 Motivate and Shape Offender Behaviors. Programming should include structure or capacity for
rewarding positive behavior in addition to punishing negative behavior.
7.	 Engender the Community as a Protective Factor Against Recidivism and Use the Community
to Support Offender Reentry and Reintegration. Programming should involve the offender’s
immediate family members and the social service agencies in the community to which the offender
will be returning. The state should empower the community—families, neighborhoods, religious and
cultural institutions, businesses—to reduce crime through deliberate efforts that assist offenders under
correctional control and provide support to reduce criminal behavior.
8.	 Identify Outcomes and Measure Progress. All programs should have identified outcomes and
integrated methods for measuring progress toward objectives. The system should use performance
measures to evaluate progress and inform improvements.

We reiterate that rehabilitation programming alone is not the solution to California’s
correctional crisis. California must adopt the rehabilitation programming improvement
recommendations that we provide in conjunction with the other measures we have
proposed, if it is to reduce recidivism and increase public safety.

19

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

The California Logic Model
Figure 5 is a visual representation of the eight evidence-based principles and practices,
which we call our California Logic Model.n We refer to this model as we provide
our remaining recommendations so that the reader can conceptualize where each
recommendation fits in the overall process.
Figure 5. California Logic Model

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The California Logic Model is a detailed, sequential description of how California should
apply the eight evidence-based principles and practices and what effective rehabilitation
programming (including treatment) would look like if California were to implement our
recommendations. We provide a full-sized version of the California Logic Model in Appendix
B.

n	
Special thanks to Heather Yates at the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections for working
with the Expert Panel to create the California Logic Model.
20

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Finding— The CDCR does not assign offenders to programs based on risk-needs
assessments.

Research shows that offenders with different levels of risk to reoffend respond differently to
rehabilitation programming. Yet, the CDCR is not currently using a risk-based assessment
tool to assign offenders to rehabilitation programming. We found that in many instances,
the CDCR assigned offenders to programs on a first-come, first-served basis, regardless
of risk level. The probability of the right offenders receiving the right programs using this
approach is extremely low. Research also shows that programs that target appropriate
offenders are more likely to reduce recidivism.o

Recommendation 3—Select and utilize a risk assessment tool to assess
offender risk to reoffend.

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We recommend that the CDCR select and utilize an objective tool to assess offenders’
risk to
reoffend levels, in both the prison and parole systems. Such an instrument would allow the
CDCR to identify which offenders should be assigned to rehabilitation programming.

o	

Lowenkamp & Latessa (2005); Lowenkamp, Latessa, & Hoslinger (2006).
21

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

3a. Adopt a risk assessment instrument for the prison population. In June 2007, the CDCR
implemented a pilot of the Correctional Offender Management Profiling for Alternative
Sanctions (COMPAS) instrument in 4 of its 12 Prison Reception Centers to assess the risk
to reoffend levels of it incoming prisoners. The COMPAS is an objective risk and needs
assessment instrument.p We commend the CDCR for taking this step to assess the risk
to reoffend levels of its offenders, however, we recognize the difficulty of implementing
a complex risk to reoffend assessment tool like the COMPAS in the prison population,
especially considering the lack of networked computer resources in the CDCR’s prison
facilities. Therefore, we recommend that the CDCR also pilot a static risk factor instrument
in four additional prisons. The CDCR could develop this instrument fairly quickly by
using most of the data it is already collecting. We provide examples of several static risk
assessment instruments in Appendix D.
3b. Utilize the COMPAS or similar assessment tool for the parole population. In 2005, the
CDCR began to use the COMPAS assessment tool to determine the risk to reoffend among
its parole population and is currently validating the results. We recommend that the CDCR
adopt the COMPAS if it is valid and the CDCR staff find it useful.

Drs. David Farabee, UCLA, and Sheldon Zhang, San Diego State University, were awarded a contract from
the CDCR to help validate the COMPAS instrument and make it more user-friendly and better suited for use
in the CDCR setting. The CDCR anticipates receiving the COMPAS validation study preliminary results in fall
of 2007.

3c. Develop a risk assessment tool normed for the female prisoner and parolee populations.
Research shows that when correctional agencies assess female offenders with instruments
designed to assess the risk to reoffend levels for male offenders, they often receive invalid
results. We recommend, therefore, that the CDCR adopt an instrument that it then norms
and validates for female offenders to assess their risk to reoffend levels.

Dr. Pat Van Voorhis has been working with the CDCR to develop a gender responsive trailer to the COMPAS
and plans to provide it to the CDCR by mid-July 2007.

3d. Develop a risk assessment tool normed for the young adult prisoner and parolee
populations. Currently the risks-needs assessments tools have not been normed or validated
for youthful offenders (18-25 years old) that have unique characteristics. As with the female
offender population, the CDCR needs to pay more attention to this population and develop a
normed and valid instrument for these offenders.
3e. Norm and validate all the selected risk assessment instruments for the CDCR’s adult
offender population and validate these tools at least once every five years. To ensure that it
is accurately predicting outcomes, we recommend that the CDCR validate and norm its risk
to reoffend assessment tools on the California offender population at least once every five
years using a standard research-based methodology that compares projected outcomes to
actual results.

p	

Details of COMPAS can be found at http://www.northpointeinc.com/.
22

PART I—THE ROADMAP

3f. When assigning rehabilitation treatment programming slots, give highest priority to
those offenders with high and moderate risk to reoffend scores. The first principle of
evidence-based rehabilitation programming is: target the highest risk offenders. This
is because research shows that high and moderate risk to reoffend prisoners and
parolees achieve the greatest gains in recidivism reduction.q The explanation for
this is that high and moderate risk to reoffend prisoners and parolees have greater deficits
in pro-social skills and criminal thinking and achieve higher levels of improvement from
rehabilitation treatment programs. Additionally high and moderate risk to reoffend prisoners
and parolees have higher base rates of offending, so increasing their pro-social skills and
reducing their criminal thinking produces greater returns, or “bang-for-the buck.” Because
rehabilitation treatment resources are often limited, we recommend that the CDCR allocate
its rehabilitation treatment programming slots first to its high and moderate risk to reoffend
prisoners and parolees.
3g. Provide low risk offenders with rehabilitation programs that focus on work, life skills,
and personal growth rather than rehabilitation treatment programs. Low risk to reoffend
prisoners and parolees have low base rates of offending behavior, fewer criminogenic needs,
and generally stronger support systems (Andrews and Bonta, 1998), which means that their
needs for more expensive rehabilitation treatment programs are minimal or nonexistent.
In fact, the largest known test of the “target the highest risk” principle found that when
corrections agencies provided intensive rehabilitation treatment programs to higher-risk
offenders, those offenders experienced significant recidivism reductions, but when the
agencies provided those same intensive rehabilitation treatment programs to low-risk
offenders, those offenders experienced either a very minimal reduction or even an increase
in recidivism (Lowenkamp et. al., 2006). Therefore, we recommend that the CDCR provide
its low risk offenders, who have such needs, with rehabilitation programs that focus on
work, life skills, and personal growth, such as vocational or educational programming, but
not rehabilitation treatment programming.
3h. Provide short-term prisoners with reentry services and reintegration skills training
rather than rehabilitation treatment programs. Most credible rehabilitation treatment
programs require the offender to participate for at least 6 months to gain any measurable
and sustainable benefit from the program. (Hubbard et al., 1989; Hser et al., 2001;
Simpson, Joe, and Brown, 1997.) However, as Table 3 shows, there are nearly 70,000
“short-term” prisoners who spend only a few weeks or months in prison before the CDCR
releases them. Regardless of risk to reoffend level, these prisoners simply do not have the
time to participate in or benefit from rehabilitation treatment programs. This group of shortterm prisoners needs a different kind of rehabilitation programming. We recommend that
the CDCR offer this group of prisoners rehabilitation programs and services that develop
their community reintegration and reentry skills. The CDCR can conduct most of these
types of programs within a 30-60 day time frame, and the offenders can continue them,
if appropriate, in their communities.r The CDCR may also want to consider a fast-track
rehabilitation program such as the one used by the Arizona Department of Corrections (see
Appendix H). This would be another way for the CDCR to match the right offender to the
right rehabilitation program—based on the offender’s length of stay.

q	
Andrews & Bonta (1998); Latessa, Cullen, & Gendreau (2002); Taxman (2006).
r	
In the treatment literature, researchers generally recognize that individuals could benefit from
short periods of motivational readiness to prepare for treatment (NIDA, 1999; Knight, Hiller, Broom, &
Simspon, 2000).
23

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Table 3: CDCR Admissions and Lengths of Stay by Admit Type
N

%

Current Average Length of
Stay (ALOS)

141,881

100%

11.4 mos

50,708

36%

18.3 mos

36,176

26%

23.0 mos

Admission Type
Total Admissions
New Court Felony Conviction
No Probation Violation
Probation Violation

14,532

10%

8.6 mos

Parole Violators – Total

91,173

64%

8.7 mos

New Court –Felony Conviction

21,936

16%

19.5 mos

Technical Violators

57,728

41%

4.0 mos

Technical Violators Reinstated

0.6 mos

11,509

8%

Other Key Groups

18,752

13%

Two Strikes

17,280

12%

56 mos

334

0%

240 mos

1,138

1%

Life

Three Strikes
Life Sentences – No 2 or 3 Strikes

Source: CDCR Admissions and Release Data, CY 2006, CDCR Office of Research

Short-Term
Prisoners

24

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Finding— The CDCR does not assign offenders to programs based on risk-needs
assessments.
Objective, standardized instruments, rather than subjective judgments alone, are the most
effective methods for determining the programming needs that should be targeted for
each offender.s By using objective risks-needs assessment instruments, CDCR personnel
can determine the strength or “level” of each need in an offender. The CDCR can use
this information to match the right offender to the right rehabilitation program and also
determine the offender’s rehabilitation program sequence. Ideally, the CDCR should assign
high to moderate risk to reoffend offenders to the programs that target their primary,
or strongest, criminogenic need areas first. Effective programs target multiple, specific
factors (Lowenkamp and Latessa, 2005). The more criminogenic needs that a program
targets in an offender, the greater the rate of recidivism reduction he or she
experiences.

Recommendation 4—Determine offender rehabilitation treatment
programming based on the results of assessment tools that identify and
measure criminogenic and other needs.

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We recommend that the CDCR assess the criminogenic needs of high to moderate risk
to reoffend prisoners and parolees and the life skills and personal development needs of
low risk to reoffend offenders. (Figure 6 lists the seven criminogenic needs areas.) After
identifying the risk to reoffend levels of its adult offender population, the CDCR should select
and begin using a battery of criminogenic, self-administered needs assessment tools to

s	
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Young, & Wexler (2007).
25

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

determine the criminogenic needs levels of high to moderate risk to reoffend prisoners and
parolees: (a) when they enter prison, (b) after they complete rehabilitation programming,
(c) when they are assigned to parole supervision, and (d) periodically during their time in
the correctional system. Measuring the criminogenic needs levels of offenders at these times
will allow the CDCR to determine if the programs are effectively reducing those needs. The
CDCR also needs to select non-criminogenic needs instruments to identify and measure
the other needs of its low risk offenders. The CDCR should develop a risks-needs matrix to
provide its staff with standard rehabilitation programming recommendations guidelines. We
provide a list of recommended criminogenic needs assessment tools in Appendix D.
Figure 6: Seven Criminogenic Needs Areas
Research has demonstrated that varied combinations of these seven criminogenic needs (dynamic risk
factors) drive criminal behavior in male offenders:
1.	
2.	
3.	
4.	
5.	
6.	
7.	

Educational-vocational-financial deficits and achievement skills
Anti-social attitudes and beliefs
Anti-social and pro-criminal associates and isolation for pro-social others
Temperament and impulsiveness (weak self-control) factors
Familial-marital-dysfunctional relationship (lack of nurturance-caring and/or monitoring-supervision)
Alcohol and other drug disorders
Deviant sexual preferences and arousal patterns

The concept of criminogenic needs means that research shows that the offender population has a higher
prevalence of these behaviors than does the general population. Therefore, the presence of these needs
in a person may very well indicate a tendency toward criminal activity. The key to understanding the
importance of these criminogenic needs is the fact that they represent a constellation of characteristics or
circumstances. The mission, of course, is to divert the offender from adverse behaviors and to replace them
with healthy alternatives.

4a. Do not assess the criminogenic needs of low risk to reoffend offenders (identified
using the tools in recommendation #3). As mentioned in recommendation 3g, low risk
to reoffend prisoners and parolees are not likely to have criminogenic needs and are not
positively affected. In fact, many are negatively affected by participation in rehabilitation
treatment programs. We recommend that the CDCR not use its limited resources to assess
the criminogenic needs of low risk offenders. Instead, these CDCR should select needs
instruments that identify and measure the work, life skills, personal growth, and other
programming needs of this population and assign them to rehabilitation programs based on
those assessments.
4b. Utilize additional evidence-based tools to supplement criminogenic needs assessments.
General risk assessment instruments (e.g., LSIR) don’t make distinctions between kinds
of behavior assessed. This becomes especially important when dealing with special
populations—e.g., violent offenders and sex offenders. Therefore, we recommend that
the CDCR investigate and then utilize additional evidence-based tools to supplement the
criminogenic needs assessments given to its high and moderate risk to reoffend prisoners
and parolees. We provide examples of these additional tools in Appendix D.

26

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Finding—The CDCR does not have automated behavior management (case) plans for
each of its offenders.

The behavior management planning process is an important evidence-based practice and is
an integral step in matching the right offender to the right program in the right order. The
behavior management plan links the assessment process to rehabilitation programming
and ensures continuity of rehabilitation programs and services between the prison, parole
system, and other community-based providers. At the heart of a behavior management plan
is a behavioral contract, which is a dynamic tool that provides for continuous and seamless
measurement of program and service delivery to prisoners and parolees. Risk-based
assignments to rehabilitation programming require behavioral contracts to ensure that
offenders and correctional agency staff agree to the desired offender outcomes.
Recommendation 5—Create and monitor a behavior management plan for
each offender.

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We recommend that the CDCR create a behavior management (or case) plan for each of its
adult offenders in prison and on parole. The CDCR should actively monitor these plans to
keep track of the progress that offenders are making toward achieving their rehabilitation
programming objectives. The CDCR should design these behavior management plans to
identify and change the criminal behavior patterns of the offenders.

27

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Behavior management planning includes these major tasks:
1.	 Administer the objective risk-needs assessment tools at the prison Reception Center to
identify the programming needs of the prisoners while in prison or at the parole office to
identify the programming needs of parolees being released to parole supervision.
2.	 Develop a behavior management plan based on the risks and needs levels identified in
step 1.
3.	 For prisoners: Update the behavior management plan as the prisoner (a) completes
assigned programming in prison, (b) fails to comply with the plan requirements, or (c)
periodically completes a new risk-needs assessment.
4.	 As prisoner prepares to transition to the community (parole), update existing behavior
management plan to include additional programming required for the offender’s
successful reentry into the community
5.	 For parolees: Update the behavior management plan as the parolee (a) completes
assigned programming in the community, (b) fails to comply with the plan requirements,
or (c) periodically completes a new risk-needs assessment
CDCR staff and program managers (in prison and in the community) who actively review
the behavior management plans of their offenders, as well as pre- and post-program tests
and risk-needs assessments, will be able to measure treatment gains and update or modify
rehabilitation program requirements as needed. Behavior management plans provide
the CDCR with the ability to keep track of prisoners and parolees as they complete their
assigned rehabilitation programs, comply with institutional rules, and fulfill their parole
obligations.

28

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Finding—The CDCR does not offer a sufficient quantity of evidence-based rehabilitation
programs designed to reduce recidivism to its adult offenders.
The effectiveness of rehabilitation services depends on the quality, quantity, and content of
the programs. Each program should have written manuals and curricula that outline each
session. Studies have found that such programs are better managed and achieve better
outcomes (NIDA, 2006). Focusing on a small set of programs allows correctional agencies to
establish quality programs, put in place quality assurance procedures to measure program
outcomes, and hire and train qualified staff to deliver the programs effectively. Research
on a national and international basis concludes that programs focused on the six major
offender programming areas, when implemented appropriately, do reduce recidivism. An
example of that research is the Washington State study by Aos, et al. on page 31.t

Recommendation 6—Select and deliver in prison and in the community a core
set of programs that covers the six major offender programming areas—
(a) Academic, Vocational, and Financial; (b) Alcohol and other Drugs; (c)
Aggression, Hostility, Anger, and Violence; (d) Criminal Thinking, Behaviors,
and Associations; (e) Family, Marital, and Relationships; and (f) Sex
Offending.

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We recommend that the CDCR select and deliver a core set of evidence-based rehabilitation
programs that covers the six major offender programming areas.

t	
While we have identified those programs that work based on research, there are also
“promising” programs that are showing evidence to be working, but have not yet accumulated a
sufficient body of rigorous research.
29

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

These programs should:
1.	 Be directed at reducing the seven criminogenic factors listed in Figure 6 that were
identified in high and moderate risk to reoffend prisoners and parolees during the
criminogenic needs assessment process;
2.	 Be directed at addressing the other needs of low risk to reoffend, female, and short-term
prisoners and parolees; and
3.	 Be cognitive behavioral-based,u where appropriate, including the use of the therapeutic
community model for substance abuse rehabilitation programs.
Because the introduction of evidence-based programming is a complex objective, we
recommend the following approach:
1.	 Initially put in place one core program from each of the six major offender programming
areas (see Appendix D, for examples of programs being operated in other states).
2.	 Measure processes and outcomes and revise programs to achieve program fidelity.
3.	 Once fidelity has been achieved in one program from each of the six major offender
programming areas, make adjustments to those programs to create at least two levels
of programming based on responsivity factors, such as:
a.	 Match offender to programming based on responsivity factors (e.g., assign lower
cognitive level offender to behaviorally-driven group, rather than higher functioning,
cognitive based group).
b.	 Match offender to staff based on responsivity considerations (e.g., Spanish speaking,
gender, cognitive level, interests, etc.).
c.	 Match staff to programs that they are most suited to deliver (e.g., training,
education, personality, interests, skills, strengths-weaknesses, etc.).
4.	 Measure processes and outcomes of programs with added responsivity levels and revise
programs to achieve program fidelity.
5.	 Put in place additional programs from each of the six major offending programming
areas.
6.	 Measure processes and outcomes of additional programs and revise programs to achieve
program fidelity.

u	
Based on the research (Andrews & Bonta, 1998; NIDA, 1999, 2006; Lipsey & Landenberger,
2006; Landenberg & Lipsey, 2005), corrections agencies should use cognitive-behavioral (CBT)
strategies in most of their rehabilitation treatment programs. The well-respected Therapeutic
Communities program model now adopts CBT within its therapeutic setting to help offenders learn new
skills and behaviors.
30

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Washington State Case Study
The recent work done by the Washington State Institute for Public Policy, a research arm of the
Washington State Legislature, reinforces the recommendations in this report. The Institute was asked
to determine if there were evidence-based policy options to reduce future prison construction. The
Institute reported that in the area of correctional programming, effective correctional programming
reduces crime and saves money. Table 4 shows selected results.
Table 4: Effects of Evidence-Based Programming on Criminal Recidivism and Net Costs
Effect on
Recidivism Rate

Benefits Minus
Costs (per
participant)

Cognitive/behavioral skills training in prison or community.

-6.3%

$10,299

Drug treatment in prison.

-5.7%

$7,835

Drug treatment in the community.

-9.3%

$10,054

Sex offender treatment in prison with aftercare.

-7.0%

-$3,258

General education in prison (basic education or post secondary).

-7.0%

$10,669

Vocational education in prison.

-9.0%

$13,738

Employment and job training in the community.

-4.3%

$4,359

Adult Offender Programs

Source: Aos et al.

Note: This table reflects average effects based on multiple studies in each program type. “Effect on
recidivism rate” considers criminal measures such as arrests and convictions but does not include
technical violations (personal communication with Steve Aos, May 25, 2007). The effect on recidivism
rate may be higher if technical violations were included. The effect on recidivism is measured as the
percent change in re-arrests and re-convictions for program participants in the experimental group
relative to a comparison (control) group that did not receive the treatment. “Benefits Minus Costs”
is calculated as the sum of the benefits to crime victims plus the benefits to taxpayers minus the
marginal costs of the program compared to the cost of the alternative program. Benefits to crime
victims account for between 48% and 69% of total benefits. See Exhibit 4 in Aos et al. for more
details.
As Table 4 shows, research demonstrates that effective programming reduced recidivism and saved
money. The one exception, from a cost benefit perspective, is sex offender treatment in prison with
aftercare. Because of the intensity of the treatment, sex offender programs cost more than other
programs, which means that they cost more than they save. Policy makers have to ask themselves,
is the 7% crime reduction worth the added cost to offer such programming? Washington State
policy makers concluded that it was and continue to provide cognitive-based sex offender treatment
to its offenders in prison and in the community. The positive reductions in recidivism rates shown
in the Table 3 are not additive. Offenders who have completed several rehabilitative programs are
not likely to have reduced rates that are the accumulation of each program’s estimated reductions.
More importantly the programs must demonstrate fidelity to the evidence-based principles to
achieve the desired outcomes. Maintaining quality standards in the implementation and ongoing
operations of these types of programs is key to achieving the desired outcomes.
Besides the studies conducted by the Washington State Institute for Public Policy, other evidencebased research and guidelines show that correctional institutions can achieve even stronger results
when they INTEGRATE all of these core risk reduction programs AND (a) automate their behavior
management plan systems, (b) use sound cognitive protocols, and (c) systemically reinforce planned
outcomes through a system-wide offender earned incentive system (Taxman, Shepardson, and Byrne,
2004).
Because of the measurable results that correctional organizations are achieving when implementing
these programs, correctional institutions in Arizona, Iowa, Illinois, Maine, Missouri, Oregon,
Pennsylvania, Washington, and Wisconsin, to name just a few, are incorporating these active elements
into their next generation of correctional programming.
31

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Overview:Cognitive
Behavioral Therapy

Overview: Therapeutic
Communities

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a type of
psychotherapy derived from behavioral and cognitive
psychological models of human behavior:
•	

•	

The therapeutic community (TC) treatment model
consists of a therapeutic milieu that addresses the
criminal thinking and antisocial behavior of the
offender through a combination of social structure
(from the residential setting) and the therapy. The
TC model provides a holistic approach to assisting
offenders to learn new behaviors, values, and
attitudes that affect their substance abuse and
criminal conduct behaviors. The client-base for
TCs is typically those offenders with drug abuse
problems as well as social and psychological issues.
The design of the TC, originally targeted to address
drug addiction, is to treat the whole person through
the peer community, and it has evolved to include
a variety of additional services relating to family,
education, vocational training, and medical and
mental health. The residential setting provides a
forum for the offender to learn, adopt, and practice
pro-social values.

Behavior therapy is based on the clinical
application of theories of behavior such as
learning theory; people learn how to change
behavior with such therapy.
Cognitive therapy is based on the clinical
application of the role of cognition, or the
process of perceiving, interpreting and
attributing meaning to events, in emotional
disorders. Cognitive therapy focuses on
thoughts, assumptions and beliefs.

CBT draws from both models and it is based on
the idea that people’s thoughts cause feelings, not
external things, like people, situations and events. Its
aim is to modify everyday thoughts and behaviors to
positively influence emotions. CBT is considered an
effective evidence-based treatment widely used to
treat mental disorders. CBT has been demonstrated
as effective in over 375 studies for the treatment
of mental health issues such as: anxiety disorders,
generalized anxiety, panic, phobias, obsessivecompulsive disorder, post traumatic stress disorder,
bulimia, depression, and marital distress. It is also
used to treat more severe and enduring conditions
such as: psychosis, schizophrenia, anger control,
pain, adjustment to physical health problems,
insomnia, and organic syndromes such as early stage
dementia. CBT is used with groups of people as well
as individuals.

The TC perspective views the substance abuse
disorder as a disorder of the whole person, and
clients typically either have histories indicating
problems with socialization, emotional and cognitive
skills, and psychological development or have eroded
such skills through drug-addicted lifestyles. Recovery
is seen as a process of rehabilitation and relearning
or re-establishing healthy functioning, skills, and
values, as well as regaining physical and emotional
health. For those who never had such skills, the TC
offers “habilitation,” or learning the skills and values
necessary for productive, socialized living.
The TC model for prison environments operates
much like those models in the outside community,
but tends to be constrained by prison-specific rules
and regulations. A dedicated TC unit is usually
one in which participants are isolated from the
rest of the prison population. Staff are often exoffenders and frequently graduates of the program
themselves. Typically, correctional TCs are comprised
of prisoners with substance abuse problems as
well as psychological disturbances, especially those
demonstrating persistent anti-social behavior. Those
with acute psychiatric illness are usually considered
unsuitable, as a major tenet of TC is that members
must take responsibility for their actions.

CBT’s role in prison and parole populations is
sometimes as a component of substance abuse
and mental health treatment programs although
many other programs include substance abuse
problems, sex offenses and unstable mental illness
in the exclusion criteria. Wilson, Bouffard, and
Mackenzie’s (2005) review of quantitative empirical
evidence regarding cognitive behavioral programs
in correctional settings found cognitive behavioral
programs to be effective at reducing recidivism.
Landenberger and Lipsey (2006) provide details on
the specific elements or combination of elements
necessary for a successful cognitive behavioral
program which includes programs that focus on high
risk offenders, tend to have outside researchers
involved in the work, and use a specific manual or
approach. These programs fare well in reducing
recidivism.

Evaluations of in-prison drug treatment TCs in the
U.S. show that intensive treatment followed up by
after-care is associated with reduced criminality
and drug use. DeLeon, Kressel, and Melnick (1997)
notes that, based on various experiences with
correctional systems, programs, and correction-based
drug treatment, a continuum of services is the best
strategy for effective TC intervention. The threetiered process involving TCs through incarceration,
work release, and parole are most successful
at reducing recidivism and drug use. However,
limitations in many TC studies are self-selection and
the lack of rigorous experimental designs.

32

PART I—THE ROADMAP

6a. Develop and offer rehabilitation treatment programs to those offenders with high and
moderate risk-to-reoffend scores and lengths of stay (LOS) of six months or more. As we
explained before, high and moderate risk to reoffend offenders achieve the greatest gains
in recidivism reduction, because these offenders have greater deficits to overcome in areas
of pro-social skills, substance abuse, and criminal thinking. Additionally, as discussed in
recommendation 3h, to benefit from rehabilitation treatment programming, these offenders
would need to participate for at least six months in the program, (Hubbard, et al, 1989),
although more ingrained criminal behaviors require at least twelve months of care (Simpson
et. al., 1999a and DeLeon et. al., 1997). Therefore, we recommend that the CDCR develop
and offer evidence-based, rehabilitation treatment programs only to high and moderate
risk to reoffend prisoners and parolees who have lengths of stay of six months or more.
Treatment for offenders serving life sentences needs to be assigned based on their release
dates.
6b. Develop and offer rehabilitation programs focused on work, life skills, and personal
growth for all low risk to reoffend prisoners and parolees who have LOS of six months or
more. As we mentioned earlier, several studies show that assigning low risk offenders to
rehabilitation treatment programs and services increases their recidivism rates. For this
reason, we recommend that the CDCR develop and offer rehabilitation programs focused on
work, life skills, and personal growth programming for its low risk to reoffend prisoners who
have more than a six-month LOS.
6c. Develop and offer reentry programming for all offenders who have LOS less than six
months. As in the case of the low risk to reoffend prisoners, there are a sizeable number of
prisoners admitted to the CDCR through new court convictions who receive relatively short
sentences and will spend a short period of time in the CDCR before being released. Typically,
any prisoner with a sentence of 16 months or less, who enters prison with three to five
months of jail credit, and is able to earn day-for-day work credits, will serve less than six
months in prison. These offenders are unlikely to have sufficient time to enter and complete
a six-month rehabilitation treatment program by the time they complete their reception
processing and arrive at their assigned prison facilities. We recommend, therefore, that the
CDCR develop and offer reentry programming for this offender population and prepare them
for reintegrating into their families and communities. Reentry programming should include
access to services that will assist offenders in maintaining sobriety, locating housing, and
obtaining employment. As previously noted, the CDCR may want to consider a fast-track
program such as used in the Arizona Department of Corrections for this population (see
Appendix H).
6d. Develop and offer “booster” programs before reentry and within the community to
maintain treatment gains. We recommend the CDCR develop and offer “booster” programs
to maintain treatment gains. The CDCR should deliver these programs to its higher risk
to reoffend prisoners before releasing them from prison. The CDCR should stack these
programs on top of core programs (e.g., refreshers on skills acquired during formal phases
of treatment) in each of the major offender programming areas. Booster programs should
also focus on providing offenders with skills to prevent criminal behavior relapses—i.e.,
avoiding high risk situations, responding differently, identifying behavioral triggers, etc.

33

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

6e. Assign offenders to programs based on responsivity factors relating to their motivation
and readiness; personality and psychological factors; cognitive—intellectual levels; and
demographics. We recommend that the CDCR assign offenders to programs and program
providers based on identified responsivity factors and match the offenders to appropriate
treatment groups and program facilitators. Research demonstrates that effective
rehabilitation programs identify and account for individual differences in motivational and
readiness levels, personality and psychological traits, levels of cognitive and intellectual
functioning, and demographic variables. Where needed, the CDCR should create and deliver
front-end, pre-rehabilitation treatment programs to address motivation and readiness
factors in its offender population. Researchers recognize that treatment readiness is a
critical area of improving offender outcomes (Finney, Noyes, Coutts, and Moos, 1998; Moos,
Finney, Quimett, and Suchansky, 1999; Sia, Dansereau, and Cruchry, 2000; Blakenship,
Dansereau, and Simpson, 1999).
6f. Develop and offer a core set of programs that is responsive to the specific needs of
female offenders. Research demonstrates that female offenders have different rehabilitation
programming needs than their male counterparts. We recommend, therefore, that the CDCR
develop rehabilitation programming for female offenders that responds to their particular
needs.
6g. Develop and offer a core set of programs that is responsive to the specific needs of
youthful offenders. As previously discussed, youthful offenders have different programming
needs that their older counterparts. We recommend, therefore, that the CDCR develop
rehabilitation programming for youthful offenders that responds to their particular needs.
In Table 5 we sort the 34 CDCR Nominated Recidivism Reductions Programs into the Six
Major Programming Areas to show the progress the CDCR is making toward delivering a full
menu of programs to its adult offenders.

34

PART I—THE ROADMAP
Table 5: CDCR Nominated Recidivism Reduction Programs and the Six Major Programming Areas
Six Major Offender Program Areas

CDCR Recidivism Reduction Program

Academic, Vocational, and Financial

Academic Courses
Computerized Literacy Learning Centers (CLLC)
Elementary Secondary Education Act (ESEA)
Bridging Education Program (BEP)
Re-Entry Education
Community-Based Coalition (CBC)
Community Re-Entry Partnerships (CRP)
Employment Development Department (EDD)
Incarcerated Youthful Offenders (IYO)
Offender Employment Continuum (OEC)
Parolee Employment Program (PEP)
Vocational Education
Inmate Employability Program (IEP)
Employment Re-Entry Partnership (ERP)
Carpentry Pre-Apprenticeship Program

Alcohol and other Drugs

Parolee Service Centers (PSC)
Residential Multi-Service Center (RMSC)
Drug Treatment Furlough (DTF)
In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP)
Parolee Services Network (PSN)
Parolee Substance Abuse Program (PSAP)
Substance Abuse Program (SAP)
Substance Abuse Service Coordinating Agency (SASCA)
Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery (STAR)
Transitional Treatment Program (TTP)
Transitional Case Management Program-HIV (TCMPHIV)
Transitional Case Management Program-Mental Health
Services Continuum (TCMP-MHSCP)

Aggression, Hostility, Anger, and Violence

Conflict Anger Lifelong Management (CALM)
STAND UP

Criminal Thinking, Behaviors, and Associations

Day Reporting Center (DRC)
SB618

Family, Marital, and Relationships

Community Prisoner Mother Program (CPMP)
Family Foundations Program (FFP)
Female Offender Treatment and Employment Program
(FOTEP)

Sex Offending

Currently the CDCR has no sex offender programs for
prisoners. Parolees attend parole outpatient clinics.
The CDCR has recently established the Sex Offender
Management Board to review best practices and
develop recommendations to improve management
practices for sex offenders.

35

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Finding—The CDCR does not always measure the quality or effectiveness of its adult
offender programs.
A commitment to evidence-based rehabilitation programming that works includes
determining whether or not the programming being delivered is achieving its stated
objectives. This requires correctional agencies to collect programming data from every
program delivered and every offender assigned to programming in an automated,
systematic, and consistent fashion (Rossi, Freeman, and Lipsey, 1999). This also means
that every program that correctional agencies deliver to their adult offender populations
(in prison and the community) must have clearly defined outcomes—in other words, each
program provider and offender participant should know, before the program begins, what a
successful outcome from participating in the program would look like and what they need to
do to achieve it. The CDCR has recently reestablished its Research Division and is expanding
its program evaluation capability.

Recommendation 7—Develop systems and procedures to collect and utilize
programming process and outcome measures.

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If California adopts our rehabilitation programming improvement recommendations, it will
be able to offer evidence-based rehabilitation programming to those offenders who would
most likely benefit from such programs. But that is just the beginning. To fully benefit from
these recommendations, the CDCR will need to develop information systems and operations
procedures to ensure that it collects rehabilitation programming outcome data from each
program it offers and each offender it assigns to programming. Therefore, we recommend
that the CDCR require rigorous outcome and process evaluations from all of its rehabilitation
programs to determine (a) the effectiveness of the programs on participants, (b) why
and how the programs are producing the results they are obtaining, and (c) how it might
improve the programs.

36

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PART I—THE ROADMAP

7a. The CDCR should develop a system to measure and improve quality in its adult offender
programming. We recommend that the CDCR use its programming process and outcome
measures data to: (a) determine the effectiveness of its programming as it relates to
reducing recidivism or any other stated objective, (b) modify programming that is not
achieving desired outcomes; and (c) provide research data for future correctional research
projects. This will allow the CDCR to develop a quality assurance system for its offender
programming.
7b. The CDCR should develop the capability to conduct internal research and evaluation
that measures and makes recommendations to improve the quality of its programming. We
recommend that the CDCR continue to fund and expand its Office of Research to give it the
internal capability of conducting research projects of varying complexity levels. This will
give the CDCR the ability to internally measure and improve the quality of its rehabilitation
programming by collecting and assessing benchmark data.
7c. The Legislature should create an independent capability to assist with developing and
monitoring the CDCR’s quality assurance system. We recommend that the California State
Legislature permanently fund an independent research entity to assist the CDCR Office of
Research in: (a) establishing performance measures and outcome objectives for all adult
offender programs, (b) analyzing outcome data to measure the effectiveness of all adult
offender programming, and (c) recommending cancellation, modification, or addition of
programming based on outcome results and current research and best practices. We believe
that this is one of the best ways to assure quality assurance in rehabilitation programming.
Such an entity currently exists with the Center for Evidence-Based Corrections at UC Irvine.

The independent Washington State Institute assisted the Washington State Legislature and Washington
Department of Corrections in identifying and adopting sound correctional policies and programming based
on evidence-based research. It recently published a report on which correctional policies and programs were
likely to reduce Washington’s prison population. See page 31 for more details.

37

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Finding—The CDCR has begun to focus on offender reentry issues and initiatives, but it
needs to expand those efforts.
Public safety in our communities is the responsibility of all citizens. It is not just the
responsibility of the correctional and other justice agencies. Research and experience
in recent years helped us realize that the transition from prison to the community is
difficult and filled with many obstacles.v And, continuity of care is necessary for reducing
recidivism.w In particular we know that individuals are at higher risks to return to prison
shortly after their releases. Offenders require the assistance of their family members,
friends, local support systems, and broader communities to sustain the treatment gains they
have achieved through their participation in correctional programming.x When correctional
agencies partner with these support systems in the community, it greatly enhances the
ability of offenders to maintain their positive behavioral changes. These partnerships are
even more important in light of current research that indicates that when offenders
participate in treatment in the community after treatment in prison, the results
are likely to be two to three times greater than if the person participated only in
prison-based programs.y

Recommendation 8—Continue to develop and strengthen its formal
partnerships with community stakeholders.

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v	
Petersilia (2003); Maruna (2001); Visher & Courtney (2006); Visher & Farrell (2005), Visher,
Kachnowski, LaVaigne, & Travis (2004); Visher, LaVaigne, & Farrell (2003); Wilson & Davis (2006).
w	
Taxman (1998); Taxman et. al. (2004); NIDA (2006); Butzin, Scarpitti, Nielsen, Martin, &
Inciardi (1999); Martin, Butzin, Saum, & Inciardi (1999).
x	
Sampson & Laub (2001); Taxman, Byrne, & Young (2002); Byrne & Taxman (2006).
y	
Butzin, Scarpetti, Nielsen, Martin, & Inciardi (1999); Harrison & Martin (2001); Martin, Butzin,
Saum, & Inciardi, (1999); Simpson et. al. (1999a), (1999b).
38

PART I—THE ROADMAP

We recommend that the CDCR establish interagency steering committees at both the
statewide and community levels to ensure the appropriate coordination of transition services
for its adult offenders moving from prisons to their communities.
In addition to coordinating transition services, these steering committees should be
responsible for:
1.	 Ensuring that prisoners returning to the community receive access to programs and
services that will help them obtain meaningful employment, find suitable housing,
support their families, and participate in needed counseling.
2.	 Creating formal mechanisms and procedures that will assist with and improve
information exchange between agencies.
3.	 Developing formal protocols that will allow agencies to share programming outcomes
and offender behavior management program progress amongst themselves.
4.	 Creating training curricula that will ensure that all program providers and CDCR parole
staff are cross-trained.
5.	 Developing a strategy to educate the public and others (e.g., employers, service
providers, and educational institutions) about the importance of being involved in the
reentry process of offenders.
8a. Develop formal reentry plans for those offenders with high and moderate risk-toreoffend scores. We recommend that the CDCR develop formal reentry plans (the Ohio
Department of Rehabilitation and Correction refers to these documents as Reentry
Accountability Plans, or “RAPs” that are administered by Reentry Management Teams
or “RMTs”; Washington State’s Department of Corrections refers to these documents as
Offender Accountability Plans) for all of its high and moderate risk to reoffend prisoners.
This reentry plan should addresses specific issues including housing, employment, and
aftercare treatment related to their rehabilitation treatment programs in prison.z
8b. Provide offenders who have high risks to reoffend with intensive transition services
for at least their first 90 days on parole. In addition to a formal reentry plan, we also
recommend that the CDCR provide all of its high risk to reoffend offenders with intensive
transition services for a minimum of 90 days after they are released from prison.
8c. Ensure that transition and reentry programming includes family member participation
and addresses family unit integration skills development. Because healthy family
relationships and dynamics are an important aspect of treatment programs designed to
reduce reoffending, we recommend that CDCR transition and reentry programming include
programs designed to provide offenders with the skills to successfully integrate with their
families upon release from prison. These programs should include the participation of the
offenders’ family members whenever possible.
8d. Ensure that parole programming and transition services respond to the specific needs of
female offenders. Female offenders face specific challenges as they reenter the community
from prison. In addition to the female offender stigma, they may carry additional burdens
such as single motherhood, decreased economic potential, lack of services and programs
targeted for women, responsibilities to multiple agencies, and a general lack of community
support. We recommend that the CDCR ensure that its own internal transition programming,
as well as those programs and services delivered by community-based partners are
responsive to the specific needs of female offenders.

z	

Taxman, Byrne, & Young (2003).
39

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Finding—The CDCR has begun to focus on offender reentry issues and initiatives, but it
needs to expand those efforts.
It is important to note that as offenders transition from prison to their communities,
reducing their risk to reoffend levels not only involves changing the characteristics and
motivations of the offenders, but also involves making changes in the communities—
reducing the opportunities for them to commit crimes (Byrne and Taxman, 2005). These
scholars note:
The recent development of offender reentry initiatives has renewed interest in initiatives that
target both at-risk offenders and at-risk communities. It is becoming increasingly clear that
only incremental, short-term changes in offender behavior should be expected from the full
implementation of evidence-based practices in both adult and community corrections. In large
part, this is because the treatment research highlighted in these evidence-based reviews focused
on individual-level change strategies. If we are interested in long-term offender change, we need
to focus our attention on the community context of offender behavior, focusing on such factors
as community involvement in crime prevention (Pattavina, Byrne, and Garcia, 2006), collective
efficacy (Sampson, Raudenbush, and Earls, 1997), community risk level (e.g., communities with
higher proportions of first-generation immigrants, particularly Latinos, will have lower violence
levels) and community culture. Our basic premise is supported by a review of the research we
cite here: we must develop intervention strategies that recognize the importance of personenvironment interactions in the desistance process and incorporate both individual and community
change into the model. (Byrne and Taxman, 2005)

Therefore, offender programming in the community must include programs designed to
continue to reduce offender risk to reoffend levels, as well as reduce offender opportunities
for committing crimes. Parole supervision must include a focus on those opportunities to
commit crimes that exist in communities where certain neighborhoods or places present
unique risks to safety and access to specific victim pools.

40

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Recommendation 9—Modify programs and services delivered in the
community (parole supervision and community based programs and services)
to ensure that those services: (a) target the criminogenic needs areas of high
and moderate risk offenders; (b) assist all returning offenders maintain their
sobriety, locate housing, and obtain employment; and (c) identify and reduce
the risk factors within specific neighborhoods and communities.

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Currently in the CDCR, parole supervision is based on surveillance and monitoring.
Community-based programs and services do not target the factors related to reoffending.
We recommend, therefore, the CDCR require that all of its programs and services delivered
in the community, including parole supervision, include those activities that will keep
offenders from re-offending. These activities include: reducing offender criminogenic needs,
helping offenders stay sober, assisting offenders with finding housing and jobs, and reducing
the criminal toxicity of offender neighborhoods. Most importantly, the CDCR should focus
its parole supervision reducing risk by incorporating behavioral management principles
that target behaviors that contribute to criminal conduct (Taxman, Sheperdson, and Byrne,
2004).
9a. Based on a normed and validated instrument assessing risk to reoffend, release
low-risk, non-violent, non-sex registrants from prison without placing them on parole
supervision. We recommend that instead of placing low-risk to reoffend, non-violent, nonsex registrant offenders on parole supervision, the CDCR should develop a “stabilization
track” for these offenders. This stabilization track would provide low-risk offenders the
opportunity to receive voluntary services in relation to housing, job placement, and referrals
to other needed social services. The offenders on this stabilization track would no longer be
under the legal authority of the Parole Division, and as such would not be subject to having
their parole revoked. California will have to consider how to fund this group, because they
will need assistance to obtain the services they need to stay out of prison.

41

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Several studies show that imposing supervision conditions on those who are not likely
to reoffend actually increases their recidivism rates. Table 6 shows the results of several
studies of the relative effects of parole supervision on offenders by risk level.
Table 6: Summary Results of the Effects of Treatment
and Parole Supervision on Recidivism Rates by Risk Level
Level of Treatment and Supervision
Study

Risk to Reoffend Level

Minimal

Intensive

Low

16%

22%

High

78%

56%

Low

3%

10%

High

37%

18%

Low

12%

17%

High

58%

31%

Low

15%

32%

High

51%

32%

O’Donnell et al (1971)
Baird et al (1979)
Andrews & Kiessling (1980)
Bonta et al (2000)
Source: Andrews and Bonta (2003)

As Table 6 shows, placing low risk offenders on parole supervision has the opposite of its
intended effect—instead of recidivism rates decreasing, they increase.
Such an effort is not new to the CDCR. Back in the early 1990s, the then California
Department of Corrections conducted an experiment to lower the rate of technical violations
by providing incentives to the parole regions. It was highly successful. Within two years the
revocation rate dropped from 58 per 100 parolees to 35.5 per 100 parolees. Further, the
disparity in return rates between parole offices and parole regions was dramatically reduced
by 48% and 67% respectively. A key component of this model was to redirect part of the
avoided prison expenses to parolee support services (Holt, 1995).
9b. Focus programs and services on the highest criminogenic needs. Successful parole
strategies must include specific steps directed at reducing the dynamic risk factors related
to the criminal behaviors of offenders and those risk factors associated with public safety in
the community. We, therefore, recommend that the CDCR targets its parole programming
on the criminogenic needs of its high and moderate risk parolees, from highest needs to
lowest, based on their objective risk assessments.
9c. Ensure that community-based providers develop and deliver programming that
addresses criminal thinking for male offenders. Current experience shows that most
community-based programs do not address the criminal thinking patterns of offenders. We
recommend that the CDCR require all of its community-based service providers to develop
and deliver cognitive-behavioral based programming to address these needs.
9d. Train parole agents how to deal with unmotivated and resistant offenders. Successful
parole programming is enhanced by trained supervision agents. We recommend that
the CDCR include courses on how to deal with unmotivated and resistant offenders in its
training program for parole agents. This training should include motivational interviewing
and engagement skills.

42

PART I—THE ROADMAP

9e. Train parole agents how to mitigate the community risk factors. Routine activity theory
research indicates that identifying and addressing factors related to the safety of places
and access to victims are important considerations for reducing crime. Some geographic
locations are criminogenic by virtue of (a) what activities are occurring there, (b) who
is congregating there, and (c) what is not be doing there to make those places safe.
Therefore, it is extremely important that parole agents become aware of how offenders
might access victim pools related to their criminal behavior patterns. We recommend,
therefore, that the CDCR train its parole agents in strategies that will help them to identify
and mitigate the risk factors in the communities. A great deal of research has been done in
this field; please see Appendix I for a summary.

California Penal Code Section 3001 Compliance
California Penal Code (CPC) Section 3001 addresses the statutory requirements to consider prior to
discharge from parole. Specifically, parolees initially released from prison after serving a period of
incarceration for a non-violent offense, described as a conviction not noted in CPC Section 667.5 (c),
(e.g., violent crimes) and who have been on parole continuously for one year since their release, shall be
discharged the 30th day after their first year, unless the recommendation to retain them on parole has been
made to, and approved by the Board of Parole Hearings (BPH).
Additionally, parolees initially released from prison after serving a period of incarceration for a violent
offense, as defined by CPC Section 667.5, and who have been on parole continuously for two years since
their release, shall be discharged the 30th day after their second year, unless the recommendation to retain
them on parole has been made to, and approved by the BPH.
Continuous parole is defined as a parole period with no interruptions as a result of previous actions taken
by the BPH. Previous actions taken by the BPH constitute an assessment of revocation time, credit for time
served, suspension of parole with reinstatement with time loss, and retention on parole. Those offenders
who are eligible for discharge will be allowed to discharge at the field unit level.
In May of 2007, the CDCR Division of Adult Parole Operations (DAPO) issued a statewide memorandum
dictating that field units comply with this mandate and added administrative oversight at the field
administrator level for review of all cases that were recommended to be retained for final review before
forwarding to the BPH.

43

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Finding—The CDCR has begun to focus on offender reentry issues and initiatives, but it
needs to expand those efforts.
States needs to strengthen their communities. Communities provide networks of informal
social controls that can prevent offenders from repeating their criminal behaviors. Research
emphasizes that informal social controls are more powerful in controlling behavior than
formal social control agencies such as corrections, law enforcement, welfare, etc. Informal
social controls include families, non-criminally involved peers-associates, communities,
religious institutions, civic organizations, etc. (Laub, Sampson, and Allen, 2001).
The families, communities, and religious institutions that define neighborhoods are a critical,
but often neglected part of the overall plan to reduce recidivism. The research clearly
suggests that solid intervention strategies must recognize the importance of person-toenvironment interactions to aid in stopping the cycle of recidivism and to incorporate both
individual and community changes into the process (Byrne and Taxman, 2005).

Recommendation 10: Develop the community as a protective factor against
continuing involvement in the criminal justice system for offenders reentering
the community on parole and-or in other correctional statuses (e.g.,
probation, diversion, etc.).

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Most of the recommendations in this report are directed at assisting the correctional system
to provide better rehabilitation programs and services that are directed at the individual
offender level of change. However, our research over the last several decades reinforces
the importance of the community and familial supports as sources of informal social
controls. We recommend that California take the lead in developing a system of informal
social controls in its communities that thwarts criminal values and activities, minimizes
victimization, addresses the offenders’ criminogenic needs, and ensures that offenders are
engaged in services and controls appropriate to those needs (Burke, 2000).
44

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Open Drug Market Interventions
For example, a new gang and drug marketing reduction effort that Professor David Kennedy has ongoing
in six communities in the U.S. (High Point, Winston-Salem, Greensboro, and Raleigh, North Carolina;
Newburgh, New York; and Providence, Rhode Island) illustrates the strengths in informal social controls. Dr.
Kennedy installed a program where law enforcement partners with families of drug dealers and leaders in
communities (e.g., religious leaders, civic, businesses, etc.) to address the problem of open drug markets
in these communities. The law enforcement agencies and prosecutors assemble a dossier on the offenders’
criminal behaviors, including issuing arrest warrants. At an arranged meeting with law enforcement
personnel and the offenders’ family members, the drug dealers are given a choice, which is reinforced by
the families—to stop their criminal behavior or have the warrant served. The families provide support that
the offender is a welcome member of the community. In several cities, they have noted the closing of longstanding drug markets because the community is behind the offenders efforts to engage in law-abiding
activities. (Kennedy, 2007)
This pilot is one of many across the nation that illustrates the power in the community in reducing,
controlling, and eradicating criminal behavior. This is the direction that California should take to strengthen
the communities that offenders are most likely to return to. It will serve the general good to improve the
social functioning in these communities, which should serve overall to reduce crime in California.

10a. Develop a strategy for ensuring that the community is able to provide the necessary
health and social services to prisoners and parolees after they are discharged from the
criminal justice system. By default, in most states, the correctional system has become
the largest provider of health services for many communities. Offender populations have
significantly higher incidences of substance abuse, mental health concerns, and other
debilitating diseases than the general population.aa Yet, some of these services are not
universally available to the offender when they are released. We recommend that California
develop a strategy for providing released offenders with various services that address their
health and social needs and reduce their risk of further involvement in criminal behavior.
Table 7 shows which services are available to the offender depending on his or her
correctional status. Once the offender leaves the correctional system, then he or she
must obtain these services in the community, if they exist. In the cases where the needed
services do exist, released offenders often don’t have the resources required to obtain them.
This leads to the offender become physically or mentally destabilized and often results in
him or her being returned to prison after being convicted of committing a new crime or
violating one or more parole conditions. We believe that it would be in the best interest of
California to ensure that released offenders have access to the medications they need to
manage their mental health disorders and-or physical ailments, as well as access to housing
and job assistance services.

aa	
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Office of Applied Studies
(2006a); James & Glaze (2006); Maruschak (2004); Hammett, Harmon, & Rhodes (2002); Hammett
(2001); Hammett, Harmon, & Maruschak (1999); Beck & Maruschak (2004)
45

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Table 7: Services Available to Offenders, Based on Status
On Parole

After Parole Release

Medical Care for
TB-HIV-AIDS

In Prison
X

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

Medical Care for
Asthma-STDs-Diabetes

X

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

Assessment for Mental
Health Disorders

X

Referral or by CDCR

In the community, if
available

Mental Health
Counseling

X

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

Medications for Mental
Health Disorders

X

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

Assessment for
Substance Abuse Needs

X

Referral or by CDCR

In the community, if
available

Substance Abuse
Treatment

X

Referral or by CDCR

In the community, if
available

Vocational Education
Assessment

X

Referral or by CDCR

In the community, if
available

Vocational Educational
Training

X

Referral or by CDCR

In the community, if
available

Assessment for Family
Issues

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

Family Assistance

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

Housing Assistance

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

Child Care

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

In the community, if
available

46

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Finding—The CDCR does not have a graduated parole sanctions policy to provide
community-based alternatives to incarceration for parolees who violate their parole
conditions.
The ultimate goal of parole supervision is successful completion of parole with no new
crimes committed. Compliance with parole conditions is intended to produce reductions in
crime by reducing the offender’s risk to reoffend. However, there is no evidence to support
that the current practice of locking up offenders for technical parole violations (not related
to their criminal behavior patterns and/or criminogenic needs) reduces crime. Incarceration
is a destabilizing factor for the offender, family, and community, and therefore even shortterm interruptions contribute to more negative behaviors in the community,ab such as
unplanned pregnancies and higher rates of sexually transmitted diseases. Anything that
contributes to the removal of individuals from the community has a negative impact, some
of which is not measurable. But, Maruna (2001) has shown how difficulties in reintegration
are only exacerbated by repeated incarceration periods.

Recommendation 11—Develop structured guidelines to respond to technical
parole violations based on risk to reoffend level of the offender and the
seriousness of the violation.

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ab	
Thomas & Torrone (2006); Rose & Clear (1998); Kubrin & Stewart (2006); Thomas & Sampson
(2005); Clear, Rose, Waring, & Scully (2003)
47

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table 8: Summary of Graduated Responses Concepts, Relevant Research, and Sanctions
Concept

Relevant Research Findings

Sanction Features

Certainty

Increased perceived certainty of punishment
deters future deviance (Grasmack and Bryjak
1980; Paternoster 1989; Nochols and Ross
1990).

Defined Infractions Behavioral contract &
Written Notification Structured Sanction
Menu

Celerity

Reduction in violations by reducing the
Swift Process to Respond
interval between violation and sanction (Rhine
1993). Delaying response increases perception
that response is unfair or questionable.

Consistency

Similar decisions made for similar situations
increases compliance due to positive
experience (Paternoster et al. 1997).

Behavioral contract Structured Sanction
Menu

Parsimony

No punishment should be imposed that is
more intrusive or restrictive than necessary
(Tonry 1996).

Structured Sanction Menu

Proportionality

Level of punishment should be commensurate
with severity of the criminal behavior (von
Hirsch 1993).

Structured Sanction Menu

Progressiveness

Continued violations result in increasing
stringent responses (Altschuler and Armstrong
1994).

Structured Sanction Menu

Neutrality

Responses must be viewed as impartial and
consistent with rules, ethics, and logic (Burke
1997).

Defined Infractions Behavioral Contract

11a. Restrict the use of total confinement for parole violations to only certain violations.
We recommend that California enact legislation that restricts the use of total confinement
(e.g., prison) for technical parole violations to only those violations that are: (a) new felony
convictions or (b) technical parole violations that are directly related to the offender’s
criminal behavior patterns, specific dynamic risk factors, and that also threaten public
safety. All other parole violations should result in intermediate, community-based sanctions
other than prison.
The most recent data from the US Department of Justice shows that for most states, new
prison admissions consists of 71% new felony court convictions and 29% parole violators.ac
California’s new prison admissions, however, consists of 36% new felony court convictions
and 64% parole violators, which is nearly the exact opposite of most other states. As
mentioned before, part of the disparity between California and other states has to do with
the sentencing laws that have been passed in California. For example, in California when a
parolee absconds from parole, although it is considered a technical parole violation, state
law mandates that serious and violent parolees be referred to the state Board of Parole
Hearings (Petersilia, 2006). In 2006, the CDCR admitted nearly 70,000 parole violators
to prison. If California were to begin diverting some percentage of less serious (based on
an empirical risk assessment) parolees to community-based sanctions instead of prison, it
would have less need for prison beds.

ac	

Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Prisoner Statistics Series, August 2, 2000.

48

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Currently in California, sanctions for technical parole violations are determined by three
entities: (a) California state law, (b) the California Board of Parole Hearings (BPH), and (c)
the CDCR Division of Adult Parole Operations. All three of these entities base their parole
violation sanctions on the seriousness of the violation, but not on the risk to reoffend level
of the violator. We recommend that California develop and implement structured sanctions—
based on seriousness of the violation and offender risk to reoffend—for technical parole
violators. The sanctions should address the offenders’ criminogenic needs and ensure that
offenders are engaged in services and controls appropriate to those needs (Burke, 2000).
11b. Develop a parole sanctions matrix that will provide parole agents with guidelines for
determining sanctions for parole violations. The CDCR Division of Adult Parole Operations
(DAPO) determines sanctions for approximately 18,000 (24%) of the CDCR’s 75,000 total
parole violators. Nearly 16,500 of these are non-technical parole violators and the remaining
1,500 are technical parole violators. We recommend that the CDCR create a matrix that
incorporates graduated responses in the parole supervision process that support supervision
goals and facilitate successful reentry. Having agency guidelines for responding to parole
violations serves multiple purposes. Establishing structured parole guidelines will:
•	 Allow responses to violations to be more fair and consistent throughout the agency,
based on a common set of guidelines that provide a set of options appropriate to
offender risk level and the seriousness of the violation. While each individual case must
be assessed, responses to violations should be viewed as impartial and consistent
with rules, ethics, and logic. Similar decisions made for similar situations increases
compliance of parolees, whereas dramatically different responses from officer to officer
undermine trust and legitimacy of the system.
•	 Provide parolees with clear supervision expectations and consequences for violations.
•	 Hold offenders accountable by responding swiftly and certainly to all violations.
•	 Support maintaining treatment in the community and pro-social activities when feasible.
•	 Structure efficient use of time, resources, and delegation of authority.
•	 Allow the delegation of authority and informed decision-making at all levels of the
agency.
•	 Support the agency and staff working together toward a common purpose.
•	 Facilitate performance measurement and quality assurance.
The graduated responses approach emphasizes using incentives to shape behavior and is
based on the concepts in Table 8.

By law, Washington State law does not confine its parole (community custody) violators in prison. Consistent
with the principle of just deserts, if parolees commit crimes while on supervision, the state prosecutes them.
For non-criminal violations of parole supervision, the Washington DOC created a prescriptive sanctioning
grid that specified what punishment was allowed for a range of violations. The grid allows parole officers
to return to custody only those high and moderate risk offenders who have committed violations directly
related to their criminogenic needs. The WA DOC, through a separate administrative hearing unit, imposes
parole sanctions.

49

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Summary of Findings and Recommendations
Finding

Recommendation

The state of overcrowding in CDCR prison
facilities makes it difficult for offenders to access
rehabilitation programs.

Recommendation 1—The CDCR must reduce
overcrowding in its prison facilities to make it easier for
offenders to access rehabilitation programming.

The CDCR treats offenders who successfully
complete rehabilitation programs and positively
manage their behaviors in the same manner as
those who do not.

Recommendation 2—California must enact legislation
that creates a system that motivates its offenders
to successfully complete their rehabilitation program
requirements, comply with institutional rules in prison,
and fulfill their parole obligations in the community.

The CDCR does not assign offenders to programs
based on risk-needs assessments.

Recommendation 3—Select and utilize a risk
assessment tool to assess offender risk to reoffend.
Recommendation 4—Determine offender rehabilitation
treatment programming based on the results of
objective assessment tools that identify and measure
criminogenic and other needs.

The CDCR does not have automated behavior
management (case) plans for each of its
offenders.

Recommendation 5—Create and monitor a behavior
management plan for each offender.

The CDCR does not offer a sufficient quantity of
evidence-based rehabilitation programs designed
to reduce recidivism to its adult offenders.

Recommendation 6—Select and deliver in prison and in
the community a core set of programs that covers the
six major offender programming areas—(a) Academic,
Vocational, and Financial; (b) Alcohol and other
Drugs; (c) Aggression, Hostility, Anger, and Violence;
(d) Criminal Thinking, Behaviors, and Associations;
(e) Family, Marital, and Relationships; and (f) Sex
Offending.

The CDCR does not always measure the quality or
effectiveness of its adult offender programs.

Recommendation 7—Develop systems and procedures
to collect and utilize programming process and outcome
measures.

The CDCR has begun to focus on offender reentry
issues and initiatives, but it needs to expand
those efforts.

Recommendation 8—Continue to develop and
strengthen its formal partnerships with community
stakeholders.
Recommendation 9—Modify programs and services
delivered in the community (parole supervision and
community based programs and services) to ensure
that those services: (a) target the criminogenic needs
areas of high and moderate risk offenders; (b) assist
all returning offenders maintain their sobriety, locate
housing, and obtain employment; and (c) identify and
reduce the risk factors within specific neighborhoods
and communities.
Recommendation 10: Develop the community as a
protective factor against continuing involvement in
the criminal justice system for offenders reentering
the community on parole and-or in other correctional
statuses (e.g., probation, diversion, etc.).

The CDCR does not have a graduated parole
sanctions policy to provide community-based
alternatives to incarceration for parolees who
violate their parole conditions.

Recommendation 11—Develop structured guidelines to
respond to technical parole violations based on risk to
re-offend level of the offender and the seriousness of
the violation.

50

PART I—THE ROADMAP

Making it Work in California
The road to correctional reform is littered with thousands of pages of reports written by
well-meaning people with good intentions. These reports often present good information,
solid support, and well-developed conclusions, but fall short in the area of implementation.
We recognized this common pitfall and devoted a considerable amount of time to making
sure that this report is different.

Identified Barriers
The first step that we took to make this report useful was to identify several barriers that
we believe will either prevent or hinder our recommendations from being fully implemented
in California. We provide a complete list of those barriers in Appendix J—Implementation
Requirements, but provide a summary here.
Essentially, the barriers we identified can be classified into four categories: (a) legislative,
(b) structural, (c) cultural, and (d) societal (or community).
Legislatively, California must change the laws that contribute to offenders’ lack of access
to and motivation for participating in rehabilitation programming. Unless California
reduces overcrowding, offenders will not have the space or safe environment they need to
participate in the rehabilitation programs. And, until California provides its offenders with
motivation to become involved in and successfully complete rehabilitation programs, they
will continue to “do their time,” likely getting worse, but certainly not getting better.
Structurally, the CDCR must take the necessary steps to improve the alignment of its
organizational infrastructure to its stated mission. It must redraw its organizational chart
to centralize programming policy, while making it easier for unit-level leaders to make
decisions. It must tear down the silos between departments and create cross-functional
teams that work together to solve the organization’s challenges. It must also enhance and
build up its technology infrastructure to support offender information sharing, automated
behavior plan (case) management, and computer-based programming delivery.
Culturally, the CDCR must develop its employees to ensure that they are qualified to deliver
and support adult offender rehabilitation programming. The CDCR must also train them to
identify and manage the prisoners and parolees based on the assessment of risk and needs,
in the context of a behavior management plan. It must ensure that all staff, correctional
and programming, are working together to provide rehabilitation programs and services to
offenders so that those offenders, when released, are less likely to return.
From a societal perspective, the CDCR must continue to foster, nurture, and expand
partnerships with local governments and community-based organizations to provide
seamless delivery of programming and services between prison- and community-based
providers. And communities must realize that they can be either part of the solution to
California’s correctional crisis or part of the problem.

51

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Expected Positive Outcomes
Is it possible to quantify the benefits of implementing our recommendations?
The simple answer to that question is it depends.
As anyone familiar with estimating potential impacts will state, quantifying potential benefits
(or costs) depends largely on the extent to which the interventions are fully implemented.
We have proposed a comprehensive package of recommendations, some of which California
can implement faster than others. On one side of the implementation spectrum are those
recommendations that organizational development consultants refer to as “low-hanging
fruit”—those policy and practice changes that the CDCR can implement relatively quickly.
Included in this group are activities like: piloting a static risk assessment, continuing to
develop internal and external research capability, and developing a parole sanctions matrix.
On the other side of the spectrum are those recommendations that will take longer to
implement—recommendations that require labor contract negotiations or the enactment of
new laws. Included in this group are activities like adopting and validating a criminogenic
needs assessment instrument, enacting legislation to expand the system of positive
reinforcements for program participation, and measuring program outcomes to improve
program fidelity. California will realize the benefits of implementing our recommendations in
direct relationship to the speed in which it puts them into practice.
In addition to the implementation factor, another variable that will influence the impact
of our recommendations is the public sentiment that we have alluded to throughout this
report. Although research shows that the voting public now feels that the CDCR should be
rehabilitating its offenders, recent California legislation, like AB 900, which provides for $7
billion dollars to be spent on constructing additional prisons over the next several years,
belies that sentiment. History shows that public sentiment on crime policy changes with
the prevailing winds. The unfortunate truth about correctional policy is that oftentimes it
is driven more by newspaper headlines than rigorous research. One only has to consider
how the Willie Horton story in 1986, torpedoed rehabilitation reform to understand the
importance of public sentiment on correctional policy. Some of our recommendations
propose diverting some prisoners who are now sent to prison to community sanctions and
others propose no longer supervising some parolees who are now being monitored by
parole agents. Correctional experts and criminologists say that these are the right measures
to take. But the most important questions are: Is the public ready for these offenders to
return? Would California’s political leaders have the collective resolve to continue reforming
its correctional system should even one of these diverted parolees or no longer supervised
“ex-parolees” commit a headline grabbing crime? We cannot answer those questions.

52

PART I—THE ROADMAP

However, having provided those caveats, we believe that if California were to implement all
of our recommendations, it would reduce the number of prison beds that it needs, thereby
reducing the amount of money it spends on corrections. Table 9 summarizes our estimates.
We provide details of these estimates in Appendix E.
Table 9: Total Costs and Savings of Proposed Programming and Population Reduction Strategies
Costs
Costs

Cost of Prison
Programs

$120,637,519 $124,236,131

Cost of ParoleCommunity
Corrections

$450,000,000 $468,750,000

Total Costs

$570,637,519 $592,986,131

+ 10% increased CA
costs*

$57,063,752 $59,298,613

Net Costs

$627,701,271 $652,284,744

Dollar Savings

Bed Reduction Prison Bed Savings
Savings

Offsets

Bed Savings

$803,283,000 - $906,268,000

Recidivism Savings

$45,181,579 - $90,379,636

Total Bed Reduction Savings

$848,464,579 - $996,647,636

Current Budget Funding for Prison and
Parole Programming

$340 000,000

Total Current Spending

$340,000,000

Total Savings

$1,188,464,579 – $1,336,647,636

Net Savings

$560,763,308 - $684,362,892

Beds saved through population reduction

38,000 – 44,000

Beds saved through recidivism reduction

2,200 – 4,400

Overall Bed Savings

41,200 – 48,400

*A preliminary estimate of the increased costs for funding correctional programs in California compared to the
rest of the country. See Gordon et. al. (2007).

Overall, our recommended strategies would reduce the number of prison beds that
California needs by 42,000 to 48,000 beds per year. The result would mean an annual
savings of between $848 and $996 million. New investments in prison and community
programming should cost between $628 and $652 million a year. A significant portion
of these costs, or $340 million a year, which the CDCR now spends on programs, could
ultimately be used to offset these new expenditures. In total, all these new strategies could
save California between $561 and $684 million a year.
We also believe that if California implements our recommendations, it will establish an
accountable and credible correctional system. It is no secret that the Federal judiciary is
giving serious consideration to appointing a Federal Receiver to run California’s correctional
system, as it already has with the states’ correctional healthcare system. By adopting and
implementing our recommendations, California will demonstrate by its actions, not just
its words, that it is capable of resolving its current correctional crisis on its own. We have
provided solutions to California’s correctional problems that are evidence- and experiencebased. We have provided a roadmap that other states have used to (a) improve their
correctional cultures; (b) reduce the overcrowding and violence in their prisons; and (c)
53

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

provide their offenders with viable rehabilitation programs and services. Consequently, as
prisoners receive more and better rehabilitative and treatment services prison security also
improves. When custody challenges are minimized the prison becomes a safer environment
for all corrections personnel.

Incremental Implementation
As we close the first part of this report, we believe that the keyword to keep in mind is
incremental. We recognize the natural desire of people to want to fix things rapidly and
we urge speed where speed is called for. But we also urge caution when venturing into
uncharted territories for the organization. The CDCR is the nation’s largest correctional
agency. It has many internal parts and external stakeholders; its information systems are
not networked in most cases, making the sharing of offender information problematic at
best; and it has two large employee labor unions with several thousand members each,
which adds complexity to changing work assignments or expanding existing roles. The CDCR
has a great deal of work to do to explain to its staff throughout the organization why these
reforms are needed. If staff members do not understand why it is important for them to do
what is required and how doing so will make them more effective, the CDCR will not be able
to implement most of these recommendations. In light of these considerations, pilots should
be used whenever possible to work out the flaws and engender buy-in when launching
new initiatives. Using pilots means going slower than we are sure some would like, but
experience teaches us that when attempting to transform organizations, leaders really only
get one time to get it right. It is worth taking the time to get it right.
In terms of risk assessment, while piloting the COMPAS in prison, the CDCR could also
quickly develop and begin piloting a static risk factor instrument to determine the risk to
reoffend levels of all of its prisoners using existing data, and supplementing it as needed.
This would provide the CDCR with an alternative method of obtaining a much-needed risk
assessment tool, while at the same time giving it more time to validate and customize the
COMPAS tool for its future expanded use. In terms of needs assessment, in Appendix D,
we identify a few possible instruments that the CDCR could initially adopt, for example
the CSS-M to measure criminal thinking/associates, HIQ to determine anger management
needs, the static 99 to evaluate sex offender needs, and the TCU or ASI for determining
substance abuse needs.
In Appendix K—Implementation Timeline, we provide a rational timeline for implementing all
of the Panel’s Reform Recommendations over a two-year period of time. We provide here a
summary of the major tasks from that timeline.
Major Tasks:
1.	 Adopt Expert Panel Plan and Recommendations
2.	 Craft and Pass Legislation and Change Policies to Create Access to and Incentives for
Program Participation
3.	 Develop or Adopt and Implement Risk to Reoffend Assessment Instrument
4.	 Select and Implement Offender Needs Assessment Instrument
5.	 Begin Assigning Offenders to Appropriate Services Based on Risk and Needs
6.	 Pilot New Programs

54

PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

Part II—The Program Reviews
In this part of the report, we provide the results of our review of 34 programs that the
CDCR has identified as being designed to reduce recidivism.

Where California Now Stands
Tables 10 and 11 present an overview of the prison and parole programs and activities that
the CDCR offers its adult offender population. In Appendix M we provide more information
and analysis regarding these programs.

Table 10: CDCR Adult Offender Prison Program and Activity Participation
Number of
Prisoners
Participating

% of Released
Prisoners
(n=134,148)

Support Services

50,019

37.3%

Bridging Program

27,791

20.7%

Academic Education

24,505

18.3%

Substance Abuse Treatment

9,772

7.3%

Vocational Educational

8,736

6.5%

Industries

4,033

3.0%

Forestry Training

3,608

2.7%

Camp

3,589

2.7%

Community Work Crews

748

0.6%

Reception Center Permanent Work Crews

181

0.1%

40

0.0%

Activity-Program Type

Joint Venture
Source: CDCR, 2006

Table 10 shows the numbers of prisoners who participated in a CDCR-sponsored program or
activity at any time before their release dates in 2006. The largest percentage of prisoners
participated in the Support Services activity. The CDCR assigns prisoners to Support
Services to offer them the opportunity to learn skills through on-the-job or vocational
training. Support Services assignments enable the prison to operate more efficiently and
include positions like porter, food server, and yard crew worker.
55

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Table 11: CDCR Adult Offender Parole Program and Activity Participation

Releases

% of all
releases
(n=113,839)

38,261

33.6%

Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery (STAR)

6,205

5.5%

Substance Abuse Services Coordinating Agencies (SASCA)

4,440

3.9%

Parolee Employment Program (PEP)

4,071

3.6%

Employment Development Department (EDD)

3,452

3.0%

Parolee Service Centers (PSC)

3,061

2.7%

Computerized Literacy Learning Centers (CLLC)

2,496

2.2%

Parole Services Network (PSN)

1,485

1.3%

Bay Area Service Network (BASN)

1,386

1.2%

Residential Multi-Service Centers (RMSC)

943

0.8%

In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP)

181

0.2%

Program Type
Police and Corrections Team (PACT)

Source: CDCR, 2005

Table 11 shows the numbers and types of programs in which parolees participate. The Police
and Corrections Team (PACT) is the program that has the largest parolee participation. The
PACT creates partnerships between local law enforcement and social services agencies to
provide parolees with assistance in obtaining substance abuse treatment, transitional living
accommodations, employment services, subsistence services, and educational-vocational
training.
The data in Tables 10 and 11 provides a baseline for California to begin the discussions
about increasing the quantity of programs that the CDCR offers, as well as increasing the
numbers of offenders who participate in rehabilitation programs. This is especially important
in light of the rehabilitation program requirements required in the recently passed AB 900.

56

PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

Identifying Recidivism Reduction Programs
The CDCR operates more than just recidivism reduction programs and activities, and
we provide an in-depth description of those programs and activities in Appendix M. Our
mission was focused on rehabilitation programming, which means that we had to develop a
means of specifically identifying recidivism reduction programs. To meet our definition of a
recidivism reduction program, the programs had to satisfy all three of these criteria:
1.	 It must conform to our definition of a program. A program is a set of structured services
designed to achieve specific goals and objectives for specific individuals over a specific
period of time. Programs are typically targeted towards particular problems such as
substance abuse or criminal thinking.ad
2.	 It must be a recidivism reduction program, intended to reduce risks to reoffend levels
and criminogenic needs scores of offenders—making offenders less likely to commit
further crimes. Recidivism reduction programs are those programs that would be judged
successful based on their having a positive impact on recidivism by participants.
3.	 It must be a CDCR-operated or funded program. The CDCR must operate the program
directly through its staff or indirectly through a contract provider.
The CDCR Office of Research submitted the initial roster of recidivism reduction programs
that they wished us to consider. We gave that roster, along with our filtering criteria, to a
group of CDCR managers (adult programs, adult institutions, adult parole, substance abuse
treatment, and correctional education). We asked them to review the roster that the Office
of Research had submitted to us in light of our filtering criteria and to nominate those
programs that should be included in the Nominated Recidivism Reduction Program Inventory
(NRRPI). The CDCR managers nominated 34 programs that they felt met the criteria to be
included in the NRRPI.ae Table 12 shows the results of this exercise.

ad	
We used the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections Program Analysis: A Description of PA
DOC Programs and an Evaluation of their Effectiveness report for our definition of “program.”
ae	
The Prisoner Reentry Initiative (PRI) was originally on the list of programs that the CDCR
managers nominated for the NRRPI. But the PRI program representatives did not respond in time for
us to include the program’s information in this report.
57

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table 12: CDCR-Nominated Recidivism Reduction Program Inventory
Prison Programs
Academic Courses
Bridging Education Program (BEP)
Carpentry Pre-Apprenticeship Program
Community Prisoner Mother Program (CPMP)
Conflict Anger Lifelong Management (CALM)
Drug Treatment Furlough (DTF)
Elementary Secondary Education Act (ESEA)
Family Foundations Program (FFP)*
Inmate Employability Program (IEP)
Offender Employment Continuum (OEC)
Re-Entry Education
S.T.A.N.D. U.P. (Successful Transitions and New Directions Utilizing Partnerships)
Substance Abuse Program (SAP)
Transitional Treatment Program (TTP)
Vocational Education

Parole Programs
Community Reentry Partnerships (CRP)
Community-Based Coalition (CBC)
Computerized Literacy Learning Centers (CLLC)
Day Reporting Center (DRC)
Employment Development Department (EDD)
Female Offender Treatment and Employment Program (FOTEP)
In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP)
Parolee Employment Program (PEP)
Parolee Service Centers (PSC)
Parolee Services Network (PSN)
Parolee Substance Abuse Program (PSAP)
Residential Multi-Service Center (RMSC)
Substance Abuse Service Coordinating Agency (SASCA)
Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery (STAR)

Prison & Parole Programs
Employment Re-Entry Partnership (ERP)
Incarcerated Youthful Offenders (IYO)
SB 618
Transitional Case Management Program-HIV (TCMP-HIV)
Transitional Case Management Program-Mental Health Services Continuum (TCMP-MHSCP)
*Alternative to incarceration.

58

PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

Methodology for Surveying Inventory Programs
The Program Review sub-committee worked with a team of researchers from the Center for
Evidence-Based Corrections (CEBC) to develop a survey instrument to collect information on
each of the 34 programs that the CDCR managers nominated for the NRRPI. (See Appendix
N for a copy of the survey.) We designed the survey to gather program information on
program characteristics using the approach taken by the Pennsylvania Department of
Corrections (2003), as well as to identify the five key program development elements
(context, identification, intervention, goals, and linkages) that Krisberg (1980) outlined.
In most cases, if the CDCR was operating a program at multiple sites with multiple
providers, then CDCR program management staff nominated the program sites they wanted
us to survey. They nominated the sites they believed represented the most “pure” program
models. However, for the in-prison Substance Abuse Program (SAP), we surveyed each of
the six providers.
We distributed surveys to the program directors, by email and by mail. We included a cover
letter from Marisela Montes, Chair of the Expert Panel, with each survey. The cover letters
contained instructions for completing the surveys and a list of supporting materials that
we wanted the program directors to submit to us along with the survey. The supporting
materials included: copies of program manuals, training materials, curriculum materials,
and other documentation that would support their responses to the survey items.
The CEBC used the program directors’ responses and supporting materials to create the
NRRPI. The NRRPI is a comprehensive catalog of pertinent information for each of the 34
nominated recidivism reduction programs. Because of its size, we have placed it in Appendix
N of this report. We encourage the reader to review the NRRPI to get an overview of the
kinds of rehabilitation programs the CDCR offers its adult offenders.

Evaluating Recidivism Reduction Programs
The NRRPI contained 34 programs. We conducted a high-level review of 11 of those
programs to determine their fidelity to evidence-based programming principles and
practices. This review provides information as to whether or not these programs have a high
probability of producing good program outcomes.

Selecting a Rating Instrument
We decided to review the 11 programs using the California Program Assessment Process
(CPAP). The CPAP is a tool for rating rehabilitative programs according to their conformity
with the findings of behavioral research on effective correctional interventions.
A CPAP rating provides two kinds of information on program quality. First, the Effective
Interventions Scale assesses the degree to which a program’s design incorporates elements
that reduce recidivism. Second, the Research Basis Scale assesses the extent and the
quality of the research supporting the program’s design. This combination of ratings allowed
us to determine whether these CDCR programs reflected or were out of step with the eight
evidence-based rehabilitation programming practices and principles.

59

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Selecting the Programs to Review
The CEBC staff used these criteria to determine which of the 34 programs it would review
first:
•	
•	
•	
•	

Balance between institutional and parole/community programs
Inclusion of programs specifically for female offenders
Diversity of program types (substance abuse, life skills, vocational/employment, etc.)
CDCR program practitioner sense of which programs are the most promising in terms of
recidivism-reduction potential

Table 13 shows the 11 programs that we selected to review first and the locations at which
they are operated.
Table 13: 11 Programs Selected for CPAP Review
Institutions Programs

Parole-Community Programs

Program

Site

Incarcerated Youthful Offender (IYO)

Centrally administered

Substance Abuse Program (SAP)

SATF-Yard F

Family Foundations Program (FFP)

Santa Fe Springs

Re-Entry Education

Centrally administered

Transitional Case Management Program-Mental
Health Services Continuum (TCMP-MHSCP)*

Centrally administered

Female Offender Treatment Employment Program
(FOTEP)

San Diego

Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery (STAR)

Centrally administered

Parolee Employment Program (PEP)

San Diego

Residential Multi-Service Centers (RMSC)

Stockton

In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP)

Centrally administered

Day Reporting Center (DRC)

Fresno

* TCMP-MHSCP was classified as an institutional program in the initial roster of programs prepared by the CDCR
Office of Research. It has elements that occur both in the prisons and in the community.

CPAP Assessments Methodology
To prepare for the program reviews, the CEBC and CDCR Research staff members, who
were assigned to perform the ratings, attended a full day of training conducted by Dr. Ryken
Grattet and Jesse Jannetta. The trainers presented the raters with a copy of the CPAP and
other instructional materials; informed the raters of the theoretical basis of the CPAP; and
conducted a mock rating of a CDCR operated program to familiarize the raters with the
process.
After completing the training, Dr. Grattet and Jesse Jannetta organized the raters into five
teams of two. One rater was from the CDCR Office of Research and the other was from the
Center for Evidence-Based Corrections (CEBC). Dr. Grattet and Jesse Janetta gave each of
the teams two or three programs to review.

60

PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

The raters then reviewed their assigned programs. The raters used a scoring sheet (which
can be found in Appendix N) to rate and document assessment scoring decisions. First they
reviewed the information contained in the surveys and supporting material that the program
directors had submitted and made an initial, independent assessment of the program. Team
members then compared their assessment scores and created a list of follow up questions
for the program representative. The teams then contacted the program representative
via email or by telephone to gather any missing information and to clarify any areas of
uncertainty. The teams documented all email communications and transcribed all phone
conversations to ensure information accuracy.
Ratings for each program represent the consensus of both members of the rating team.
In the event that team members were unable to achieve consensus, Dr. Grattet and
Jesse Jannetta mediated scoring disagreements. The teams submitted their final CPAP
assessments with corresponding documentation. We reviewed and concurred with their
assessments and included that information in this report.

Effective Interventions Ratings
Figure 7 summarizes each program’s score on the CPAP Effective Interventions Scale, as a
percentage of possible points. Six of eleven programs that we rated received 70% or more
of the possible points, indicating that many of the CDCR programs were designed with the
principles of effective intervention. This is a promising sign that California is moving toward
evidence-based practices in its rehabilitation program design. However, the fact that three
of the eleven programs rated received less than 50% of the possible points also suggests
that there are areas in which the CDCR can improve its program designs to make them
more effective.
Figure 7: Effective Interventions Ratings

FFP: Family Foundations Program; IYO: Incarcerated Youth Offenders; SAP-SATF: Substance Abuse Program at
California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility-Yard F; TCMP-MHSCP: Transitional Case Management ProgramMental Health Services Continuum; DRC: Day Reporting Center; FOTEP: Female Offender Treatment and
Employment Program; ICDTP: In-Custody Drug Treatment Program; PEP: Parolee Employment Program; RMSC:
Residential Multi-Service Center; STAR: Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery

61

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Research Basis Ratings
Figure 8 summarizes each program’s score on the CPAP Research Basis Scale, as a
percentage of possible points. We gave zero points to four of the eleven programs that we
reviewed because they did not have any internal evaluation requirements or methods. When
we reviewed the remaining seven programs, only four of those programs scored higher than
27% and the other three scored 13% or lower. This indicates that CDCR programs are not
delivered in accordance with evidence-based principles and practices.
Figure 8: Research Basis Ratings

FFP: Family Foundations Program; IYO: Incarcerated Youth Offenders; SAP-SATF: Substance Abuse Program at
California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility-Yard F; TCMP-MHSCP: Transitional Case Management ProgramMental Health Services Continuum; DRC: Day Reporting Center; FOTEP: Female Offender Treatment and
Employment Program; ICDTP: In-Custody Drug Treatment Program; PEP: Parolee Employment Program; RMSC:
Residential Multi-Service Center; STAR: Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery

62

PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

CPAP Assessments Summary
Table 14 summarizes the results of the combined program ratings from the Effective
Interventions and Research Basis Scales. We list the CPAP rating element from each scale
on the left side of the chart.
Table 14: Summary of CPAP Assessments on 11 Rated Recidivism Reduction Programs

IYO

Reentry
Education

SAP-SATF

TCMPMHSCP

DRC

FOTEP

ICDTP

PEP

RMSC

STAR

Parole/Community
Programs

FFP

Institution
Programs

Assesses risk and targets high-risk

◊

◊

◊

∞

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Assesses criminogenic needs and delivers services
accordingly

●

◊

◊

●

●

●

◊

●

◊

◊

●

Theoretical model clearly articulated

●

●

◊

●

●

●

●

●

●

◊

●

Has program manual and/or curriculum

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

Uses cognitive-behavioral or social learning
methods

●

◊

◊

●

●

●

●

●

◊

●

●

Enhances intrinsic motivation

●

◊

◊

●

◊

●

●

●

◊

◊

●

Continuum with other programs and community
support networks

●

●

◊

●

●

●

●

●

∞

●

∞

Program dosage varies by risk level

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Responsive to learning style, motivation and
culture of offenders

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

◊

●

◊

Uses positive reinforcement

●

◊

◊

●

◊

●

●

●

◊

●

●

Staff has undergraduate degrees

◊

◊

●

◊

●

●

◊

●

◊

●

◊

Staff has experience working with offenders

●

●

●

●

?

●

●

●

●

●

●

Staff recruitment and retention strategy

●

◊

◊

●

●

●

◊

●

◊

●

●

New staff training

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

●

◊

◊

●

Program director qualifications

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

●

●

◊

◊

●

Program data collected and analyzed

●

●

◊

●

◊

◊

●

●

◊

◊

◊

Rigor of evaluation studies

◊

◊

◊

●

●

●

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Evaluation study appeared in peer-reviewed
publication

◊

◊

◊

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

Extent and consistency of evaluation results

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

◊

●

◊

◊

◊

◊

Best practices and/or expert panel recommends

Legend: ● Meets criteria ∞ Partially meets criteria ◊ Does not meet criteria ? No data provided
FFP: Family Foundations Program; IYO: Incarcerated Youth Offenders; SAP-SATF: Substance Abuse Program
at California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility-Yard F; TCMP-MHSCP: Transitional Case Management
Program-Mental Health Services Continuum; DRC: Day Reporting Center; FOTEP: Female Offender Treatment
and Employment Program; ICDTP: In-Custody Drug Treatment Program; PEP: Parolee Employment Program;
RMSC: Residential Multi-Service Center; STAR: Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery

63

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

CPAP Assessments Details
In this section of the report we provide an explanation of the evidence-based
practice or principle behind each of the CPAP rating elements. Then, in italics, we
provide a summary of the performance of the eleven programs relative to each
element.
Assesses Risk and Targets High-Risk
The most effective recidivism reduction programs conform to the risk principle, which
states: “Programs should target offenders who are the greatest risk to reoffend.” By
targeting the highest risk to reoffend offenders, the CDCR can allocate its resources to
offenders who present the greatest risk to the public and who are likely to require the
most intensive program interventions to prevent recidivism. To receive credit on this rating
element, programs must assess offender risk by means of a validated risk assessment
instrument, and target program services to the highest risk offenders.
Only one of the eleven programs assessed with the CPAP conducted or utilized a validated
risk assessment instrument. That program, the Substance Abuse Program at the California
Substance Abuse Treatment Facility-Yard F, utilizes the CDCR institutional classification
score, which is valid for predicting risk of violence within CDCR institutions, although not
post-release risk. That program did not use the instrument for the purpose of targeting
higher risk offenders. Both within the CPAP programs assessed and in the Inventory
generally, informal predictors of potential risk (such as convictions for violent offenses)
were usually used to disqualify offenders from programs, rather than to target them for
programming interventions. Generally, when CDCR programs target offenders by risk level,
it is for the purpose of restricting a program to low-risk offenders. High risk offenders are
served only by programs that do not consider risk level at all. The result is a programming
environment that offers more programming to low-risk offenders than to high-risk
offenders, in direct contradiction to the risk principle.

Assesses Criminogenic Needs and Delivers Services Accordingly
The most effective recidivism reduction programs conform to the needs principle, which
states: “Programs should address criminogenic needs.” Criminogenic needs are the deficits
an offender faces that have contributed to past offending behavior and are likely to lead
to future offending unless they are addressed. These needs are dynamic risk to re-offend
factors, ones that are possible to change through effective intervention. To receive credit
on this rating element, programs must use a validated needs assessment instrument to
determine the criminogenic needs of participants and use that assessment to determine the
delivery of services and treatment.
Needs assessment was more common than was risk assessment among the programs
assessed with the CPAP. Six of the eleven programs assessed conduct needs assessments
using a validated instrument for the purpose of determining how services should be
delivered. The six programs used a variety of instruments, often dictated by the specific
program type, such as the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III and Minnesota MultiPhasic Personality Inventory-2 mental health assessments utilized by the Transitional Case
Management Program-Mental Health Services Continuum. The Contra Costa County Office of
Education, which runs both the Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery program and the
In-Custody Drug Treatment Program, developed its own needs assessment instrument, and
retained a psychometrician to conduct validation tests for it. Their instrument was the only
instrument utilized by more than one of the programs assessed.
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PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

Among the five programs that did not utilize a valid needs assessment instrument, each
used some kind of intake form or checklist to identify offender needs. In the absence of
validation, it was not possible to determine how consistent these instruments were, or how
accurately and effectively they identified offender needs. The variety of validated and nonvalidated needs assessment tools in use across these programs is in part the result of the
lack of a CDCR-wide needs assessment protocol for offenders, which forces each program
to adapt its own approach to assessing needs. These program-specific needs assessments
were used primarily to determine how a program should be delivered to participants once
they were admitted to a program, rather than to screen eligible participants to determine
which of them should be in the program.

Clearly Articulates a Theoretical Model
A program’s theoretical model posits a cause and effect relationship between the program
activities and a reduced likelihood or recidivism. To receive credit on this rating element, the
program model must identify a criminogenic need, and it must link the program intervention
to addressing that need. Programs do not receive credit for this element if they address only
non-criminogenic needs (although they may address such needs alongside criminogenic
needs), or if program content does not have a clear relationship to that need.
Clearly articulated theoretical models were the norm among the eleven programs assessed.
Only the Residential Multi-Service Center and the Reentry Education programs did not
clearly articulate their theoretical models. Both deliver services or curricula intended to
address a variety of potential criminogenic needs, but neither drew a clear relationship
between those services and their participant population. Significantly, neither program
conducts a needs assessment, contributing to a lack of clarity about the relationship
between program intervention and participant need.

Has Program Manual and/or Curriculum
Written program manuals and curricula are important means by which the program’s theory
and content is transmitted consistently to program staff. Programs receive credit for having
this material in writing.
All eleven programs assessed had written program manuals and/or curriculum materials.

Uses Cognitive-Behavioral or Social Learning Methods
Cognitive behavioral and social learning approaches have a track record of success in
programs to reduce re-offending. Cognitive-behavioral theory posits that offending behavior
is the result of patterns of thought that are conducive to criminal behavior. Addressing these
criminal thought patterns requires social learning techniques in which the offenders are
not only taught different ways of thinking, but how to model them. Pro-social attitudes and
behaviors are positively reinforced by program staff. Cognitive-behavioral and social learning
methods stress the importance of structure, organized values, roles, rules, responsibilities,
and of accountability. A program receives credit for utilizing cognitive-behavioral or social
learning methods.
Eight of eleven programs assessed received credit for employing cognitive-behavioral and/or
social learning methods, and a ninth (Reentry Education) employs elements of a cognitivelybased curriculum, but the overall program framework does not operationalize the methods
sufficiently to receive credit. Based on the programs assessed, it appears that the value
of these methods is understood within the CDCR program provider community. It is likely
that the quality and the extent of the use of these methods in practice vary considerably
65

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

across programs. Determining the degree to which this is the case was beyond the scope
of this CPAP assessment project, but devoting resources to doing so would provide valuable
additional insight into the quality of cognitive-behavioral and social learning programming in
the CDCR.

Enhances Intrinsic Motivation
A degree of intrinsic motivation is necessary for an offender to realize lasting behavioral
change. Offender motivation for change is likely to fluctuate over the course of program
participation and the offender may experience substantial ambivalence about abandoning
long-held patterns of thinking. Program staff can play a powerful supporting role in
enhancing the motivation of prisoners to change, using a technique called “motivational
interviewing.” Motivational interviewing is a directive, goal-oriented counseling style
intended to elicit offender ambivalence about change in order to effectively resolve it.
Programs receive credit if they utilize motivational interviewing techniques.
Six of the eleven programs assessed reported training staff on motivational interviewing
techniques and requiring their use. The more intensive programs in the group, such as
residential and therapeutic community programs, were particularly likely to use motivational
interviewing.

Has Continuities with other Programs and Community Support Networks
Many successful program interventions recruit and use offender family members, community
programs and other sources of pro-social support to positively reinforce desirable behaviors.
Engaging such support networks can extend the reach, and therefore the effectiveness, of
programs in both time and space. Programs receive credit for continuities with community
support networks, offender families and other programs.
All the programs assessed with the exception of Reentry Education received at least partial
credit for continuities. Family Foundations Program (FFP), Substance Abuse Program at
California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility-Yard F (SATF SAP), Day Reporting Center
(DRC), Female Offender Treatment and Employment Program (FOTEP), and Residential
Multi-Service Center (RMSC) engage participant family members. The SATF SAP, FFP,
Incarcerated Youthful Offenders, In-Custody Drug Treatment Program, and Substance
Abuse Treatment and Recovery programs interface with other programs to provide aftercare
or follow-up services for program completers. FFP, DRC, FOTEP, Parolee Employment
Program, RMSC, and Transitional Case Management Program-Mental Health Services
Continuum programs connect clients with community resources such as AA/NA meetings or
transitional housing providers. The Reentry Education program funds community liaisons
in three cities, which is too limited relative to the entire participant population to receive
credit as part of the overall program design, but indicates recognition of the importance of
these continuities. Based on this group of programs, the CDCR and its program providers
consistently seek to build continuities with other programs and community support networks
into their program models.

66

PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

Varies Program Dosages by Risk Level
Dosage refers to the total program exposure, generally measured in hours. The
effectiveness of good programs can be diluted when the program is delivered at a low
intensity. As a general principle, a higher dosage of programs should be delivered to higher
risk to re-offend offenders. Programs receive credit for delivering the program at a higher
dosage to higher-risk offenders.
Since none of the programs assessed risk, we did not give any of the programs credit for
this item.

Responds to Offender Learning Style, Motivation and Culture
The most effective recidivism reduction programs conform to the responsivity principle,
which states: “Programs should be responsive to the temperament, learning style,
motivation and culture of offenders.” These offender attributes can act in two ways
important for program effectiveness. First, attributes such as offender motivation may
determine whether an offender is “ready” for the program. An unready offender may be
best excluded from a program, despite having the risk profile and criminogenic needs
appropriate for participation. Second, once an offender is included in a program, the
program will enhance its effectiveness by matching delivery to the different learning styles,
temperaments and cultural backgrounds of the participants. While taking all of these factors
into account is a tall order for any program, “one size fits all” approaches are less effective
than those that have responsivity elements built into their design. Programs do not receive
credit if the program is delivered to all offenders in the same manner.
Nine of the eleven programs assessed received credit for incorporating responsivity
elements into their program design. Of the nine, only Incarcerated Youthful Offenders
(IYO) appears to evaluate offender readiness for the program. The other programs
that incorporate responsivity elements modify program delivery in response to relevant
differences among offenders. In other words, the programs assessed generally considered
responsivity factors for participants once they were in the program, not whether they should
be in the program.

Uses Positive Reinforcement
Programs should use positive incentives. The current research consensus is that positive
reinforcement should be applied more than negative reinforcement when trying to effect
behavior change. Programs receive credit for building positive reinforcement structures into
their program design.
Seven of the eleven programs assessed had explicit use of positive reinforcement built into
their program designs. Examples of positive reinforcement for behavior change included
earned privilege systems, added trips or extracurricular activities, or regular verbal praise
and encouragement as a performance requirement of program staff. IYO and Reentry
Education use graduation ceremonies as positive reinforcements.

67

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Employs Qualified Staff Members
Formal education is particularly important given that many of the elements of effective
interventions that have proven effective (such as motivational interviewing and cognitive
behavioral methods) have specialized technical content. Prior experience working with
offenders is also valuable, as working with offenders to change their behavior presents
unique challenges. Programs receive credit if 75% of staff delivering program services to
offenders have undergraduate degrees, if 75% of those degrees are in helping professions,
and if 75% of staff have two years of experience working with offenders.
Seventy-five percent of staff delivering program services had undergraduate degrees in
six of eleven programs surveyed. In five of those six programs, 75% of staff degrees were
in a helping profession. 75% of the staff had at least two years of experience working
with offenders in all ten of the programs that were rated on this item. (Transitional
Case Management Program-Mental Health Services Continuum could not provide the
information necessary to rate this item.) There was no program that failed to meet both the
undergraduate degree and the experience working with offenders criteria. It appears that
the CDCR program division values experience with offenders more than formal education.

Has a Staff Recruitment and Retention Strategy
Programs will be much more effective in recruiting a staff that meets CDCR’s preferred
standard if they have an explicit strategy for recruiting individuals with the desired
qualifications. A staff retention strategy to keep staff members in the program is also
important. Heavy staff turnover interferes with the consistency of program delivery and can
cause deterioration in quality of even the best-designed programs. Programs receive credit
for having an explicit strategy to recruit and/or retain staff.
Seven of the eleven programs assessed had a strategy for either staff recruitment, staff
retention, or both. Retention strategies were more common than recruitment strategies,
and many of the recruitment strategies put forth by programs seemed to be standard hiring
processes.

Trains New Staff
Staff training is vital for the consistent delivery of program services in accordance with
the program model and is particularly important for new staff members. Written training
materials facilitate the translation of the program model into practice. Conversely, the
absence of such material raises red flags regarding the quality of staff training. Programs
receive credit for providing training for new staff that includes written training materials.
All but two of the programs assessed received credit for new staff training. In the two
programs that did not receive credit, there was no distinct training for new staff. Instead,
new staff receive their training by attending regularly held training sessions with the staff
already in place.

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PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

Employs Qualified Program Directors
The qualifications and degree of involvement of a program director impacts the likelihood
of program effectiveness. Programs receive credit if the program director was involved in
the development of the program, which provides him or her with greater knowledge of the
program model, if the program director has experience working with offenders, and if the
program director has a degree in social work or a related field.
Three of the programs assessed had program directors who met all three criteria, and
another four had program directors who met two of the three criteria. No program had a
director who did not meet any of the criteria. For the five programs with program directors
who met only one of the three criteria, that criterion was experience working with offenders.

Collects and Analyzes Program Data
Evidence-based practice requires not only evaluating evidence collected in other contexts
when deciding what program approach to adopt, but collecting and using evidence once a
program is in place. Programs should measure performance and use that information for
continuous improvement. Effective measurement must be built into a program from the
start in order to produce the most accurate and useful data for program evaluation and
improvement.
Programs receive credit if they:
1.	
2.	
3.	
4.	

Collect data to monitor program performance.
Include individual level data on participation.
Identify the program eligible population.
Forward data for analysis by a non-program entity.

Five of the eleven programs assessed met all four of the criteria. Substance Abuse
Treatment and Recovery (STAR), Parolee Employment Program, and Day Reporting Center
(DRC) were able to meet all criteria except for identifying the program eligible population,
which was not possible due to the way in which participants are referred to them.
Residential Multi-Service Center (RMSC) met all criteria except the forwarding a data for
analysis by a non-program entity. Transitional Case Management Program-Mental Health
Services Continuum (TCMP-MHSCP) does not gather data to monitor program performance,
nor does it collect individual-level data. Reentry Education met only the first of the criteria.

Bases Programs on Research
There are two ways of looking at the strength of the research basis of a program model.
The first is the extent of that research basis: has it been evaluated multiple times, have
those evaluations met the standards of publication for peer-reviewed journals, and have
the outcomes of those evaluations been consistently positive, or have they been mixed?
The second is the rigor of the research that has generated the evidence: have the research
studies on program outcomes had sufficiently strong designs to create confidence that any
differences in recidivism between program participants and non-participants are the result
of the program, and not other differences between participants and non-participants?

69

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Four of the eleven programs assessed had no research basis to rate, so far as the
raters could determine. Three programs (STAR, RMSC and In-Custody Drug Treatment
Program (ICDTP)) had evidence only from the evaluation of the Preventing Parolee Crime
Program (PPCP) conducted by a team of researchers from San Diego State University,
lead by Dr. Sheldon Zhang. STAR and RMSC are component programs of PPCP, and the
evaluation found a relationship between participation in each and a reduced likelihood of
re-incarceration within 12 months of release from prison. The study was reasonably welldesigned, and the results were published in a peer-reviewed publication. The performance
of STAR and RMSC was assessed relative to a comparison group of parolees who did not
participate in any PPCP programs. However, the study was of PPCP as a whole, not of the
individual programs within it. This comparison group may or may not be similar to STAR
or RMSC participants. The research basis for ICDTP is even more tenuous, consisting of
the examination of STAR in the PPCP evaluation, as ICDTP is based in part on the STAR
curriculum. The persuasiveness of the evidence in favor of all three programs would be
much stronger had they been evaluated individually, comparing results for participants
against a comparison group of parolees eligible for those programs specifically.
TCMP-MHSCP and DRC were evaluated individually, with reasonably strong research
designs, although the DRC evaluation was of the program operated in Chicago, not the
Fresno DRC. Female Offender Treatment and Employment Program has multiple positive
evaluations of comparable strength of design to the TCMP-MHSCP and DRC evaluations.
The most thoroughly evaluated program model is the Substance Abuse Program at the
California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility-Yard F. The best study showing positive
results for the in-prison therapeutic community model is a quasi-experimental design, a
stronger design than that used by any of the other CPAP-assessed programs. There have
been multiple positive evaluations of the model, including in peer-reviewed publications, and
it has been recommended by expert and best practices bodies. However, there have also
been negative and no effect evaluations of the model, including one in California. The best
research consensus on this program model is that it is not very effective unless the program
is followed by post-release aftercare. This is currently something that in-prison Substance
Abuse Programs, in cooperation with Substance Abuse Service Coordinating Agency, try to
facilitate, but participation in aftercare is voluntary, and research by the UCLA Integrated
Substance Abuse Program (ISAP) indicated that participation rates in aftercare are low.
If the eleven programs assessed by the CPAP are any indication, the research evidence on
CDCR programming is not extensive. What is unknown about the effectiveness of this group
of programs is far more than what is known, and directing more research resources to these
programs is warranted.

70

PART II—THE PROGRAM REVIEWS

CPAP Program Reviews Conclusion
The CPAP assessments that we conducted on the eleven identified recidivism reduction
programs provide grounds for optimism concerning program content. Most of the programs
that we reviewed contain program design elements that are in line with “what works”
research for effective adult offender rehabilitation programming. Only three of the eleven
programs that we reviewed scored poorly overall: Incarcerated Youthful Offenders (IYO),
Reentry Education, and Parole Employment Program (PEP). IYO’s low scores validate
our recommendation that the CDCR needs to devote more attention to developing ageresponsive programming for its youthful offenders. The low scores in the Reentry Education
program and PEP highlight the importance of our recommendations to ensure that parolees
have the necessary reentry programs that will give them the skills they need to be
successful in the community—maintain sobriety, locate housing, and obtain employment.
The CDCR needs to improve the quality of these critical offender programs, especially in
light of the fact that the PEP operates in all 33 of the CDCR’s adult prisons.
While we uncovered good news regarding program content, program placement did not
fare as well. As we have mentioned before, the CDCR has only recently begun piloting
a validated risk to re-offend assessment tool with its prison population, but has been
using such an instrument with its parole population for more than two years. Continued
and expanded use of these tools will help the CDCR program staff assign offenders to
programming based on risk to re-offend and criminogenic needs levels. We provide
additional details of the CPAP program reviews in Appendix N.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

72

PART III—NEXT STEPS AND CONCLUSION

Part III—Next Steps and Conclusion
Next Steps
We are pleased to be a part of the process of helping California improve its adult offender
rehabilitation programming and have presented our roadmap of recommendations to guide
the CDCR down the path of using evidence-based principles and practices with its prison and
parole offender populations.
We believe that this report is just the first step of the journey. In this chapter we present
recommendations for future projects and-or activities that the CDCR should engage in to
continue to make progress in this important undertaking.

Complete CPAP Assessments. This Panel was able to complete CPAP assessments for

11 out of the 34 identified CDCR Recidivism Reduction Programs. We propose that the CDCR
complete assessments for the remaining 23 programs and issues a report of its findings to
the Legislature.

Focus on Academic Programming. In a future phase of this project, we believe the

Panel should spend more time evaluating and commenting on the CDCR’s academic program
offerings. Because of our time limitations, we did not feel that we were able to give the
academic programs the amount of attention that they warranted. Therefore, we propose
that future Panel activities focus on academic programs.

Develop Benchmarks that Assist with the Implementation of AB 900. We

recognize that many of the activities that the CDCR is now mandated to perform as a result
of the passage of AB 900 are activities that other agencies in other states have successfully
completed. We propose that a future Panel partners with the CDCR to help it implement
these requirements. The future Panel could use its experiences and expertise to help the
CDCR implement these requirements with fewer mistakes and greater efficiency.

Help CDCR Establish “High-Powered” Implementation Teams. As we have

stated, we believe that the CDCR’s progress has been hindered by the existence of “silos”
within its organizational structure. As part of the future implementation phase of this
project, we would like to work with the CDCR to help it establish targeted implementation
teams comprised of leaders from diagonal slices of the CDCR department that cuts across
existing silos. These teams would be empowered by the Secretary of CDCR and granted
broad authority to implement the changes called for in our recommendations. The Panel’s
role would be to help create these teams and then to advise them as needed.

Analyze Support Infrastructure. We propose that a future Panel consult with the

CDCR leadership team to analyze its support infrastructure in light of its current mission and
objectives. The Panel would then help the CDCR create a support infrastructure that reflects
organizational best practices and is better suited to implement our recommendations.
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Help CDCR Develop Capacity to Perform QA and Evaluation on a Continuing
Basis. Several of our recommendations are built on the concept of “continuous

improvement.” A necessary component of continuous improvement is measuring quality. We
propose that future Panel activities include teaming with the CDCR’s Office of Research to
help its staff members develop the internal skills and tools they will need to perform quality
assurance measurements and to perform process and outcome evaluations on all of the
CDCR adult offender programs.

Assist with Outcome Evaluation of Spending of $54 Million Reentry
Initiatives Budget. We propose that a future Panel work with the CDCR to evaluate

the outcomes of the spending decisions made in accordance with the $50 million reentry
initiatives budget. If new programs were implemented as a result of this spending, the Panel
could assist with the evaluations of those programs. At the conclusion of the evaluation
period, the Panel should issue a report to the Legislature describing its findings.

Refine Population Projections and Financial Estimates. We propose that a future
Panel work with the CDCR to obtain the information and develop the appropriate models
to refine information concerning the impacts of our recommendations on future CDCR
populations and budgets.

Assist with the Development of RFPs for Future Research Studies. We

believe that at some point in the future, the CDCR will need to conduct, multi-year research
studies to determine the effectiveness of its key adult offender rehabilitation programs. We
propose that a future Panel assist the CDCR with developing requests for proposal (RFPs)
for qualified research entities to conduct these studies. The Panel could also serve as an
independent entity to help the CDCR interview and select the appropriate research entities.

Provide Additional Recommendations for Prisoners with Long Lengths of
Stay. California has a large number of prisoners who have been or will be incarcerated for

long periods of time. We think that a future Panel should study this population and then
provide the CDCR with rehabilitation and reentry programming recommendations that would
address the specific needs of this often neglected group of adult offenders.

Provide Additional Recommendations for Parolees Reentering their
Communities. Most of our attention for this report was focused on the CDCR’s prison

system. We feel that a future Panel should look at the CDCR’s parole system and provide
the CDCR with additional recommendations on how to improve the quality of rehabilitation
programming delivered in the community, as well as to suggest ways for improving the
manner in which programs are delivered in the community.

Produce a Detailed Implementation Plan that Operationalizes Our
Recommendations. We provide a high-level implementation plan in this report. We

propose that a future Panel work with the CDCR to develop a detailed implementation plan.
The Panel can help the CDCR integrate the plan into its existing strategic plan and review
annually the progress that the CDCR is making toward accomplishing plan objectives.

74

PART III—NEXT STEPS AND CONCLUSION

Conclusion
We believe that with this Report to the California State Legislature: A Roadmap for Effective
Offender Programming in California, we have provided guidance to California for improving
its adult prisoner and parolee rehabilitation programming and reducing its recidivism rate.
The public deserves and the offenders need the opportunity to receive the rehabilitation
programming and services necessary to help them make a successful and long-term
transition to the community.
In this report we advocate a system of identifying needed rehabilitative programming,
implementing those programs, and measuring the fidelity of their implementation and
outcomes in relation to their effectiveness. We believe that California will realize two
important benefits from a public policy perspective: (a) the CDCR will be more transparent
and accountable for a mission that is in line with the public’s expectations, and (b) a
significantly larger number of the several hundreds of thousands of prisoners who enter
California prisons will return to their communities more prepared to be law abiding citizens.

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76

APPENDIX A—Reports Previously Published Reports on California’s Correctional Crisis

Appendix A—Reports Previously Published Reports on
California’s Correctional Crisis
Summary of Previous Reports
We agree with the Little Hoover Commission (2007) in that California doesn’t need another
report outlining correctional reform measures. What California needs to do is implement
some of the proposals that have already been presented to it. Since 1990, there have been
more than a dozen reports published that deal with the crisis in California’s adult prison
system. The major recommendations made in all of these reports are entirely consistent
with the recommendations contained in our report. In fact, a review of these 15 reports
by Panel co-chair Joan Petersilia revealed that all of the reports recommend essentially the
same ten things, which are:
1.	 Stop sending non-violent, non-serious offenders to prison. This particularly pertains to
technical parole violators, who could better be served in community based, intermediate
facilities.
2.	 Once in prison, use a standardized risk and needs assessment tool to match resources
with needs and determinate appropriate placements for evidence-based rehabilitation
programs.
3.	 Develop and implement more and better work, education, and substance abuse
treatment programs for prisoners and parolees.
4.	 Reform California’s determinate sentencing system to reward prisoners for participating
in rehabilitation programs and allow the system to retain prisoners who represent a
continued public safety risk.
5.	 Move low risk prisoners to community-based facilities toward the later part of their
sentences to foster successful reintegration and save more expensive prison-based
resources. Sub-populations, such as women, the elderly and the sick, are ideal
candidates.
6.	 Create a sentencing policy commission or some other administrative body that is
authorized to design new sentencing statutes into a workable system that balances
uniformity of sentencing with flexibility of individualization.
7.	 Reform California’s parole system so that non-serious parole violators are handled in
community based intermediate facilities and more violent parole violators are prosecuted
for new crimes.
8.	 Create viable partnerships between state and local corrections agencies that would
expand sentencing options, enhance rehabilitation services, and strengthen local reentry
systems. Suggestions have been made that include Community Corrections Acts (to
get greater funding for local criminal justice initiatives) and a Community Corrections
Division of the CDCR charged with developing alternatives.
9.	 Evaluate all programs and require that existing and newly funded programs are based on
solid research evidence.
10.	Promote public awareness so that taxpayers know what they are getting for their public
safety investment and become smarter and more engaged about California’s prison
system.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

List of Previous Reports
Blue Ribbon Commission on Inmate Population Management (1990) established by the
California legislature in 1987, chaired by Grover Trask (District Attorney Riverside County.
It issued its final report in 1990 with 38 recommendations. Recommended alternative
sanctions, and more programming, reentry programs.
Prison Population and Criminal Justice Policy in California (1992). California Policy Seminar.
Frank Zimring and Gordon Hawkins. Analysis of the recent expansion of California prisons
and alternative policy responses.
Crime and Punishment in California: Full Cells, Empty Pockets, and Questionable Benefits
(1993). California Policy Research Center, Joan Petersilia describes the growing problem of
parole violators in California prisons.
Putting Violence Behind Bars: Redefining the Role of California’s Prisons (1994). The Little
Hoover Commission found that the State’s sentencing system was unduly complicated
and inequitable to both victims and offenders and there was little distinction between the
way violent and non-violent criminals were handled. The Commission recommended that
the State create a sentencing commission to develop a sentencing structure that protects
public safety, tailors the punishment to fit the crime, addresses the needs of victims, fosters
responsibility in prisoners and balances costs with benefits.
Estimating the Effect of Increased Incarceration on Crime in California (1995). California
Policy Research Center, Franklin Zimring and his authors describe the impact of increased
prison populations on crime rates in California.
Minimizing Harm as a Goal for Crime Policy in California (1997). California Policy Seminar
Report. Edited by Edward Rubin, with analysis and chapters by Zimring, Greenwood,
Petersilia, Skolnick, and others. Purpose was to draw on the work of leading criminologists
to consider ways to address the critical problems facing California criminal justice system.
Beyond Bars: Correctional Reforms to Lower Prison Costs and Reduce Crime (1998).
The Little Hoover Commission found that state and local correctional systems were not
integrated and that the State’s response to offenders needed to include an expansion of
local sanctions and community correctional facilities for low-level offenders. The Commission
also recommended expanding programs for prisoners and parolees, developing separate
facilities for parolees returned to custody who are most likely to re-offend and re-evaluating
the organizational structure of parole.
Challenges of Prisoner Reentry and Parole in California (2000). Joan Petersilia, California
Policy Research Center. Describes the unique challenges of California’s prisoner reentry
problem.
Back to the Community: Safe and Sound Parole Policies (2003). Little Hoover Commission
found that the State’s parole policies resulted in far too many parolees returning to
overcrowded prison facilities for technical violations. The Commission proposed expanding
evidence-based rehabilitative programs for prisoners and parolees and recommended
policy-makers review the sentencing laws that place every offender on parole following
incarceration.
Breaking the Barriers for Women on Parole (2004). The Little Hoover Commission studied
the unique barriers facing the more than 10,000 women in California’s prisons and 12,000
women on parole.
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APPENDIX A—Reports Previously Published Reports on California’s Correctional Crisis

Governor’s Plan to Reorganize the Youth and Adult Correctional Agency (2005). Corrections
Independent Review Panel: Reforming California’s Youth and Adult Correctional System
(“The Deukmejian Report”). The Commission reviewed Governor Schwarzenegger’s plan
to reorganize the Youth and Adult Correctional Agency into the Department of Corrections
and Rehabilitation. This reorganization, which the Commission supported, placed a renewed
emphasis on rehabilitation for prisoners and parolees.
Understanding California Corrections, California Policy Research Center (2006). Joan
Petersilia wrote a primer on the California corrections system, from arrest through release
on parole and return. She recommended greater emphasis on in-prison and parole planning,
presumptive sentencing or a sentencing commission, and a return to indeterminate
sentencing.
Task Force on California Prison Crowding, National Council on Crime and Delinquency
(2006). This report offers policy and program options to address the severe problems in
California prisons.
Reducing the Incarceration of Women: Community Based Alternatives, National Council on
Crime and Delinquency (2006).This report describes effective treatment for women in prison
in California.
Solving California’s Corrections Crisis: Time is Running Out (2007). The Little Hoover
Commission studied the correctional crisis facing California from a financial expenditure
perspective.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

80

APPENDIX B—FULL-SIZED CALIFORNIA LOGIC MODEL

Appendix B—Full-Sized California Logic Model

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

82

APPENDIX C—RECOMMENDATIONS FOR INCORPORATING EVIDENCE-BASED PRACTICE IN THE CDCR

Appendix C—Recommendations for Incorporating Evidence-Based Practices in the CDCR

83

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

84

APPENDIX D—RESOURCES FOR IMPLEMENTING RECOMMENDATIONS IN THE CDCR

Appendix D—Resources for Implementing Recommendations in the CDCR

85

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

86

APPENDIX E—estimating the impacts of our recommendations

Appendix E—Estimating the Impacts of Our
Recommendations
In this section of the report, we present the impact of our recommendations from three
perspectives: (a) recidivism reduction, (b) prison and parole population reductions, and
(c) financial costs and benefits associated with recidivism and correctional population
reductions.
None of the recommendations made by the Panel will have any impact on the number of
persons being sentenced by the courts to the CDCR or their sentence lengths. Rather our
recommendations will only affect the large numbers of persons who are being returned to
custody for violating their parole conditions and the amounts of time served in prison or on
parole.
Our estimates are grounded in a large number of studies and the experiences of other
states that have successfully implemented such reforms without adversely impacting
public safety. However, we emphasize that the major recommendations require legislative,
administrative, and programmatic changes before California can implement them.
The legislature, with the consent of the governor, must modify California’s current
sentencing laws, which affects how much good time prisoners receive. We are mindful that
this may be more difficult to do for offenders sentenced under the state’s two and three
strikes laws, so we have separated our recommendations accordingly.
The CDCR must enact new administrative policies that reasonably restrict the large number
of parolees being returned to prison for technical violations. This has been done before in
California and is being done in other states. Finally, the CDCR, with proper funding from
the legislature, will need to make significant changes in the number and types of programs
it offers to prisoners and parolees. Ineffective programs that hold little, if any, promise of
reducing recidivism need to be identified and de-funded as quickly as possible. Then, new
and effective programs need to be created. For this to occur, the CDCR will need to reorganize its own operational capabilities as outlined in Appendix J.
It is important to note that these estimates are based on the data that were made available
to the Panel by the CDCR as well as the experiences of the other state correctional systems.
As such they are preliminary in nature and subject to modification based on further analysis
that may be required. Once it becomes clear on the extent to which the recommendations
will be adopted and implemented more precise estimates should be made. It is also
important to note that the CDCR has neither authenticated nor endorsed our estimates.
Nonetheless, we believe that if California were to implement our recommendations, the
state may significantly reduce the large number of parolees who are currently violating their
parole conditions and being returned to prison. Further, by expanding its incentive system,
the state will encourage prisoners and parolees to participate in and complete programs.
This could lower California’s projected prison population with no major increase to the
parole population. Coupled with the appropriate investments in prison and community based
programming, we believe that our plan would increase public safety, reduce crime, and save
taxpayer dollars.

Impact on Recidivism
One of the key objectives of the Panel’s recommendations is to lower the CDCR’s high
recidivism rate. Recidivism rates are typically measured by tracking a cohort of prisoners
87

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

who were released in a given year and following them for several years. Traditionally, a
recidivism rate is based on a three year follow-up period. The three measures of recidivism
are (a) re-arrest, (b) reconviction , or c) a return to the prison system for either a new
court conviction or a parole violation. California’s recidivism rate as measured by the return
to prison rate is one of highest in the nation (only Utah has a higher rate). However, this
high rate reflects the California Board of Prison Term’s and the CDCR’s policy of returning to
prison a large proportion of parolees that have been revoked for technical violations.af
Figure E-1: California Department of Corrections Historical Recidivism Rates, 1977-2004ag
Historical One & Two Year Recidivism Rate with Annual Return to Prison Rate:
1977-2004

Recidivism

Return Rate

70.0%

100.0
90.0

60.0%
80.0
50.0%

70.0
60.0

40.0%

50.0
30.0%

40.0
30.0

20.0%

20.0
10.0%
One-Year Recidivism

Two-Year Recidivism

10.0

Annual Return Rate

04

03

20

02

20

01

20

00

20

99

20

98

19

97

19

96

19

95

19

94

19

93

19

92

19

91

19

90

19

89

19

88

19

87

19

86

19

85

19

84

19

83

19

82

19

81

19

80

19

79

19

19

19

19

78

0.0

77

0.0%

Year

California’s return to prison recidivism rate was not always this high. As shown in Figure E-1,
beginning in the late 1970s the CDCR’s recidivism rate was much lower (below 30%). What
is responsible for the dramatic increase? No single cause can be identified but contributing
factors may include: (a) the passage of California’s Determinate Sentencing Law (DSL) in
1977, which eliminated discretionary parole statutorily awarded good time credits, (b) the
massive expansion of the CDCR population, and (c) the associated construction of “mega
prisons”—large facilities designed to house several thousand prisoners. We believe that
while it may not be possible to quickly or easily return to the recidivism rates of the late
1970’s, it is possible to achieve significant reductions in the current return to prison rate.

af	
Petersilia (2006); Jacobson (2003); US Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics
(2001).
ag	
The recidivism rate shown in this chart is based on “first releases to parole.” This means
that the cohort consists of prisoners who were experiencing their first release to parole and does not
include parole violators who were being re-released. Excluding parole violators decreases the overall
return-to-prison rate.
88

APPENDIX E—estimating the impacts of our recommendations

Three of our recommendations deal directly with recidivism reduction strategies:
11a. Restrict the use of total confinement for parole violations to only certain violations.
The largest reduction in the return to prison rate would occur if the state adopts the
recommendation to divert between 44% and 64% of the parolees who are now being
returned to prison for non felony criminal behavior and technical violations (see Table
E-1). The CDCR could achieve this by developing and implementing a system of graduated
responses to parole violations which provides for swift and certain punishments in the
community.
These reductions in technical violations may seem large to some, yet if accomplished, it
would result in California approaching the same percentage of parolees being returned to
prison as reported by other states for either a technical or new felony. The most recent data
from the US Department of Justice shows that 27% of all admissions to prison consist of
parole violators (either technical or new felony crime).
Table E-1: Technical Parole Violator Diversion Estimates by Type of Return Based on 2006 Admissions

Type of Return

Number of
Total

Number to be
diverted at low
end of range

Number to be
diverted at high end
of range

Those returned to custody but re-released to
parole; We estimate that 80 to 100 percent
should be diverted.

12,463 (18%)

9,970

12,463

Type I Administrative Criminal Returns (least
serious crimes); We estimate that 40 to 60
percent should be diverted.

16,617 (24%)

6,647

9,970

Type II Administrative Criminal Returns (crimes
of average seriousness); We estimate that 25 to
45 percent should be diverted.

16,617 (24%)

4,154

7,478

Type III Administrative Criminal Returns (most
serious crimes); We estimate that 15 to 35
percent should be diverted.

9,693 (14%)

1,454

3,393

Administrative Non Criminal Returns; We
estimate that 65 to 85 percent should be
diverted.

13,155 (19%

8,551

11,182

30,776 (44%)

44,485 (64%)

Total Parole Violators Diverted from Return To
Prison

If California were to divert approximately 35,000 technical violators from re-imprisonment
within the CDCR, total admissions would drop from approximately 142,000 to 107,000 (see
Table E-2).
But even this reduction would not match the norm of other state prison systems. The third
column of Table E-2 shows that if the CDCR were to have the same policies as other states,
the total number of admissions would decline to approximately 71,000. This estimate
assumes that 40% of the offenders admitted to prison would return after being released
on parole (the same rate reported by BJS minus California’s data). As shown in Table E-2,
were California to reach the national recidivism average, the percent of admissions to
prison who are parole violators would be reduced to approximately 20,000 or 29% of all
admissions—which is virtually the same as the national rate (27%). We believe that this is a
very achievable outcome given the experience of the other states.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table E-2 Estimated Impact of Recommendation 9a on Prison Admissions by Type of Admission
Current
Admissions Type

Based on Other
States*

Recommended

N

%

N

%

N

%

Felony Court

50,708

36%

50,708

47%

50,708

71%

Parole Violators

91,173

64%

56,555

53%

20,283

29%

Technical

69,237

49%

34,619

32%

10,142

14%

New Felony

21,936

15%

21,936

20%

10,142

14%

141,881

100%

107,263

100%

70,991

100%

Total

Based on all states participating in the Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Prisoner Statistics Series, August 2,
2000. 			

9a. Based on a normed and validated instrument assessing risk to reoffend, release
low-risk, non-violent, non-sex registrants from prison without placing them on parole
supervision. The second way to reduce returns to prison is to not supervise low risk
parolees. Previous studies have shown that imposing parole and probation supervision
conditions on those who are unlikely to recidivate serves to actually increase recidivism
rates. Table E-2 shows the results of several studies of the relatively effects of supervision
on offenders by risk level. Here one can see that supervised low risk offenders have higher
recidivism rates. By not supervising them the recidivism rates will actually decrease.
6. Select and deliver in prison and in the community a core set of programs that
covers the six major offender programming areas—(a) Academic, Vocational,
and Financial; (b) Alcohol and other Drugs; (c) Aggression, Hostility, Anger, and
Violence; (d) Criminal Thinking, Behaviors, and Associations; (e) Family, Marital,
and Relationships; and (f) Sex Offending. The third way for California to reduce its
recidivism rate is by offering prisoners and parolees programs that will address and treat
their educational, vocational training, mental health, and related criminogenic needs. As
offenders receive programming that addresses theses needs, there should be a modest but
significant reduction in their criminal behavior.
Table E-3 summarizes the expected return to prison recidivism reductions for each of these
three major recommendations. This table is based on the total number of persons who
were admitted to the CDCR in 2006 for failing parole for either a new felony conviction or a
technical violation. As suggested previously, the largest reduction in the 91,173 now being
returned back to prison each year would be persons who have failed parole for technical
violations (a reduction of 30,776 to 44,485). In total, the recommendations would reduce
the total number of returns to prison by between 35,000 and 50,000 or approximately 3955%.

90

APPENDIX E—estimating the impacts of our recommendations
Table E-3 Estimated Impact of Recommendations of Released Prisoners Being Returned to Prison
Return to Prison Recidivism Numbers

Number Per Year

Total number of CDCR parole violators admitted to
prison in 2006.

91,173

Parole violators with new felony convictions

21,936

Parole violators admitted for technical violations

69,237

Factor

% Change

Reductions in Returns to
Prison Per Year

11a. Restrict the use of total confinement for parole
violations to only certain violations.

44%-64% reduction of
69,237 technical violators

-30,776 to -44,485

9a. Based on a normed and validated instrument
assessing risk to reoffend, release low-risk, nonviolent, non-sex registrants from prison without
placing them on parole supervision (15% of
prisoners).

35% of low-risk prisoners
released to parole for the
first time do not return to
prison

-3,538

6. Select and deliver in prison and in the
community a core set of programs that covers
the six major offender programming areas—(a)
Academic, Vocational, and Financial; (b) Alcohol
and other Drugs; (c) Aggression, Hostility, Anger,
and Violence; (d) Criminal Thinking, Behaviors, and
Associations; (e) Family, Marital, and Relationships;
and (f) Sex Offending.

5%-10% of the parole
violators with a new
felony do not return to
prison

Total Reduction In Parole Returns to Prison

-35,411 to -50,217 or a
39%-55% reduction

-1,097 to -2,194

Source: CDCR Admission data file for 2006

Impact on Prison and Parole Populations
There are three operational requirements for successful offender programming: (a)
adequate program space for the programs to function, (b) the physical locations where
the programs are being delivered must be safe, and (c) there must be incentives for
offenders to participate. Few of these conditions exist currently within the CDCR.ah Spacewise, although we don’t have the precise figures, we know that because of overcrowding,
designated program spaces have been converted to housing units. From a safety standpoint,
there is growing evidence of increased violence and disruptive behavior within the CDCR—
the rate of serious incidents increased from 4.7 per 100 prisoners in 1990, to 7.9 per 100
prisoners in 2005 (CDCR, 2006). And in the area of incentives, with California’s DSL, there
are few incentives for prisoners to participate in meaningful programs as they know that
they will be released at the same time as prisoners who do not participate.
In Appendix L, we provided information concerning the CDCR’s current population. It should
be noted that the CDCR latest projections estimate that by the year 2012, the CDCR’s prison
population will increase from 172,385 to 190,000, and its parole population from 123,781 to
133,000.
We developed our own estimates of the impacts of our recommendations on the CDCR
prison and parole populations. We based these estimates on data provided by the CDCR
on admissions and releases for the prison and parole systems. Our estimates only assume
a “steady state” environment and do not indicate how our recommendations would impact
future sized populations. Again, we note that the CDCR has neither authenticated nor
endorsed our estimates.
ah	
There are some individual facilities that are successfully delivering effective programs,
however, systemically, the CDCR has to resolve its issues with space, safety, and incentives.
91

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

We believe that if all of our recommendations are adopted, the current prison population
would be reduced by approximately 41,000 to 48,000 prisoners and the number of
admissions to prison for all parole violators (including new felonies) will be reduced by
between 35,000 and 50,000 parolees. We believe that there are three recommendations
that deal directly with reducing the offender populations:
2. Enact legislation to expand its system of positive reinforcements for offenders
who successfully complete their rehabilitation program requirements, comply with
institutional rules in prison, and fulfill their parole obligations in the community.
The three sub-recommendations of this recommendation must be applied to have the
desired population reduction effect. We also note that each component will require new
legislation that would modify the current California Penal Code (CPC).
2a. Award earned credits to offenders who complete any rehabilitation program in prison
and on parole. This recommendation would allow prisoners who complete education,
vocational training, and substance abuse treatment programs the opportunity to receive
an average of four months off of their prison release dates (including all sentenced felons
regardless of their offense or strike levels). It would encourage prisoners (who could
benefit) to participate in well-structured and effective rehabilitative programs and thus help
lower their reoffending rates. At the same time, prisoners who complete these programs
would benefit by having their period of imprisonment reduced. Virtually all of the other
states plus the Federal prison system allow for prison terms to be reduced if a prisoner
completes rehabilitative services. Further it has been widely established by a number of
studies, including those conducted by the US Department of Justice and the CDCR, there
is no relationship between time served and recidivism (US Department of Justice, 2006).
Therefore, releasing prisoners early as a result of earning program credits will not increase
their recidivism rates. In fact, because they will have participated in effective programming
targeted to reduce their criminogenic needs factors, we expect their recidivism rates to
decrease. Table E-4 demonstrates the relationship between length of stay and recidivism
using CDCR data.
Table E-4 CDCR Recidivism Rates for First Releases by Time Served, 2000-2002
Time Served

Release Year
2000

2001

2002

Total

100.0%

60.6%

100.0%

59.4%

100.0%

57.3%

0–6

15.9%

66.0%

16.7%

63.5%

17.6%

61.9%

7 – 12

37.0%

62.6%

35.5%

62.7%

33.1%

60.1%

13 – 18

16.9%

59.0%

16.6%

57.7%

16.3%

55.7%

19 – 24

11.1%

58.6%

10.7%

57.9%

11.2%

55.9%

25 – 30

4.8%

55.6%

5.1%

54.0%

5.0%

52.4%

31 – 36

3.6%

54.9%

3.9%

53.4%

3.9%

52.5%

37 – 60

7.1%

53.9%

7.2%

49.5%

7.4%

49.8%

61 +

3.5%

56.1%

4.2%

53.5%

5.5%

51.0%

Source: CDCR
														

92

APPENDIX E—estimating the impacts of our recommendations

Impact: Based on an assumption that 50,000 to 56,000 prisoners of a release cohort
would complete such a program and receive an average four-month award, the
number of beds saved would be approximately 17,000 to 19,000.ai
2b. Replace Work Incentive Program (WIP) credits with statutorily-based good time
incentive credits. This recommendation would allow offenders to earn good time credits
based upon statute, rather than program participation. This would provide more equity
and certainty to the punishment being handed out by the courts. Table E-5 shows the
numbers of prisoners who are statutorily eligible for day-for-day (“good time”) credits and
the percentage of their sentences that they are actually serving. Here one can see that on
average, prisoners eligible for day-for-day work incentive credits are actually serving over
60% of their sentences when jail credits (the amount time spent in local jails awaiting the
disposition of their case(s) and transfers to the CDCR) are added to the calculations (see
Table E-5).
If they were receiving day-for-day, their time served in prison would be reduced by a
modest 2-4 months. And since Table E-4 shows that there is no relationship between length
of stay (at far greater amounts) and recidivism we know this policy would not adversely
impact public safety. This conclusion is further buttressed by a large number of studies
showing no relationship between length of stay and recidivism rates (NCCD, 2007).
Many other states allow prisoners to receive day-for-day credits statutorily, rather than
based on participation in some type of program or work assignment. Indeed before the
passage of DSL, California’s laws allowed all prisoners to be eligible for parole at 1/3rd of
their sentences thru the application of statutory credits. Returning back to that concept
would provide more equity and certainty to the punishment being handed out by the courts.
Table E-5: Percent Time Served For New Court Commitments and Parole Violators with New Terms
Only Eligible for Day-for-Day Credits 2006 Releases
Good Time
Earning Class

Releases

50%

56,397

20%
15%

Average
Sentence

Jail Credits

CDCR Time

Total Time
Served

% of
Sentence

31 mos.

7 mos.

12 mos.

19 mos.

61%

7,632

58 mos.

5 mos.

42 mos.

50 mos.

84%

5,082

63 mos

9 mos

47 mos

56 mos

89%

Source: CDCR 2006 Release File. 1,572 other releases not shown.

Impact: Assuming that those prisoners now eligible for the WIP day for day credits
were to receive them statutorily, the number of prison beds saved would be
approximately 14,000. This estimate takes into account the amount of good time
that is being revoked by the CDCR for rules infractions. The effects would be even
greater if prisoners in the 20% and 15% earning classes who have much longer
sentences were to be eligible for the 50% class. Specifically if the 20% earning
class was modified to 50%, the long term effects would be approximately 13,000
bed reduction. If applied to the 15% earning class, the bed savings would be
approximately 10,000. So if applied to all prisoners, the net effect would be about
37,000 in bed savings.

ai	
Table E-7 shows that between 55,000 and 62,000 offenders would be eligible for in-prison
programming in a given year. Assuming that 10% (5,500 to 6,200) fail to complete the program, we
estimate that approximately 50,000 to 56,000 offenders successfully complete programs.
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

2c. Implement an earned discharge parole supervision strategy for all parolees released
from prison after serving a period of incarceration for an offense other than those listed as
serious and violent under CPC 1192.7(c) and 667.5(c) criteria. This recommendation would
serve to reduce the time parolees spend on parole supervision based on good conduct andor program participation. If the recommendations 6a and 6b are implemented, it is likely
that the parole population will significantly increase unless similar efforts are enacted to
reduce the time served on parole and-or successful parole completion rates are increased.
The California legislature recently introduced several bills that would make such reductions
possible. For example, Senate Bill 1453 would reduce the period of supervision by six
months when a parolee completes a substance abuse program while on supervision. It is
estimated that 5,250 parolees would be impacted by this bill, which would reduce the parole
population by 2,500. Our recommendation builds upon these bills.
Impact: Since these reforms are tied to yet unknown risk levels of the parole
population as well as their capacity to meet the behavioral standards, it is not
possible to make a precise impact estimate. However, we believe that the parole
population would be reduced by approximately 29,000 parolees, based on the
assumptions that:
•	 about 85% of the 67,000 prisoners being admitted to parole for their first
release will be in the moderate to high risk to reoffend category (an estimated
57,000 first parole admissions), and
•	 that at least 50% of them (28,500) will meet the threshold for having their
periods of parole supervision reduced by at least a year.
9a. Based on a normed and validated instrument assessing risk to reoffend, release
low-risk, non-violent, non-sex registrants from prison without placing them on parole
supervision. This recommendation would simply eliminate supervision for low risk parolees.
Impact: We believe that approximately 875 prison beds would be saved, based on
the assumptions that:
•	 approximately 15% of the 67,000 first-time admissions to parole being reinstated or
re-released are low risk (an estimated 10,000 parolees), and
•	 35% of them (approximately 3,500) are being returned for technical
violations for which they return to prison for approximately 3 months.
More importantly, the projected parole population would decline by approximately
20,000 assuming these low risk parolees currently are being supervised for an
average of 2 years.
11a. Restrict the use of total confinement for parole violations to only certain violations. The
large numbers of technical violators returned each year represents an ineffective approach
to managing non-compliant behavior on the part of CDCR parolees. While we do not expect
to completely turn off the technical violation stream without a statutory prohibition, as was
done in Washington State, we do believe it reasonable and desirable to considerably reduce
the current rate by establishing new policies and implementing an array of graduated parole
violation sanctions. By diverting these prisoners from supervision, fewer be returned to
prison for technical violations.
Impact: Based on an assumption that over a two year period there will be a 44-64%
reduction in the return rate for technical violations, the number of persons admitted
to the CDCR for technical violations would decline from 69,000 to between 25,000
and 38,500. Of those diverted, 10,000-12,500 would only have been returned to the
CDCR for 2 weeks and then re-released to parole. The number of prison beds saved
for this group would be approximately 500 beds. For the remainder, based on their
94

APPENDIX E—estimating the impacts of our recommendations

current average length of stay of three months, the number of prison beds saved
would range from approximately 6,500	 to 9,500.
Table E-6 provides a summary of our population reduction impacts. In total the current
CDCR prisoner population would be reduced by between 38,500 and 43,500 prisoners–
largely by establishing a programs incentive system along the lines adopted by other state
prison systems. The parole population would be reduced by between 6,500 and 11,500.
Table E-6: Summary of Population Reduction Impacts Rounded to Nearest 500

Recommendation

Targeted Prison and
Parole Releases and
Admissions per Year

Approximate Prison
Bed Savings

2a. Award earned credits to
offenders who complete any
rehabilitation program in prison and
on parole.

50,000 – 56,000 prison
releases

2b. Replace Work Incentive Program
(WIP) credits with statutorily-based
good time incentive credits.

56,000 prison releases
in the 50% good time
earning class

2c. Implement an earned discharge
parole supervision strategy for all
parolees released from prison after
serving a period of incarceration for
an offense other than those listed
as serious and violent under CPC
1192.7(c) and 667.5(c) criteria.

57,000 moderate to high
risk parole admissions

Not able to estimate

Reduces 29,000

9a. Based on a normed and
validated instrument assessing
risk to reoffend, release low-risk,
non-violent, non-sex registrants
from prison without placing them on
parole supervision.

Low risk parolees

1,000

Reduces 20,000

11a. Restrict the use of total
confinement for parole violations to
only certain violations.

31,000 to 44,500
technical parole violators
diverted from prison

6,500 - 9,500

Adds 6,500 - 9,500

38,500 to 43,500

Less 6,500 to
11,500

Totals

17,000 – 19,000

Approximate
Impact on Parole
Population

14,000
(an additional 23,000 if
other earning classes are
added)

Adds 17,000 –
19,000

Adds 14,000

How quickly California can achieve these reductions will depend upon a number of options
available to the state. If the legislature makes the necessary changes in good time laws for
the non-two and three strike prisoners retroactive to all prisoners currently incarcerated,
most of the effects would occur within two years. Similarly, if the CDCR were to make
administrative changes in its policies toward parole violators, most of the effects would be
realized within two years. Changes based on additional and more effective treatment will
take many years to realize. It will take several years to develop proper risk assessment
systems, start assigning prisoners by risk, and ramp up the needed programs.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Financial Impacts of Recommendations
In this section we provide preliminary estimates of the costs and savings associated with
the recommendations that will impact (a) the number of parolees who are now failing
parole supervision and return to prison each year, (b) the amount of time served in
prison, and (c) the amount of time served on parole. We have also estimated the costs
of adding more programs which are listed as offsets to the prison and parole supervision
savings. We estimate the total costs of all the new programmatic initiatives along with the
savings associated with prison bed reductions that result from the population management
strategies and from reduced recidivism as a result of the programs.

New Program Costs
To calculate the annual cost of delivering program services to prisoners based on their risk
and need, the Panel examined total prison admissions during 2006.aj We recommend that
the CDCR have enough resources to provide enough programs for the following categories
of prisoners:
•	 Technical Violators: We assume that 50% of all technical parole violators (who all have
very short lengths of stay—about three months on average) will receive two months of
programming. The cost for an annual program “slot” (six prisoners) is $3,000.
•	 Prisoners with new court convictions who stay for less than 12 months: We assume that
50% of these prisoners will receive three months of programs. The cost for an annual
program slot (four prisoners) is $3,000.
•	 Long-term prisoners sentenced to 20 years or more, including lifers: We assume that
50% of these prisoners will receive six months of programs. The cost for an annual
program slot (two prisoners) is $10,000.
•	 Prisoners with a low risk to reoffend: We assume that 50% of these prisoners will
receive six months of vocational education and life skills training. The cost for an annual
program slot (two prisoners) is $4,000.
•	 Prisoners with a high risk to reoffend and moderate length of stays. We assume that
all these prisoners will receive nine months of intensive programs ranging from drug
treatment to criminal thinking. The cost for an annual program slot (1.3 prisoners) is
$5,000.
As Table E-7 shows, the annual cost for providing these programs is approximately $121$124 million.

aj	

Program cost information is based on national estimates.
96

APPENDIX E—estimating the impacts of our recommendations
Table E-7: Costs of Providing In-Prison Programs
Admission Type

Total
Admissions

Technical Violator

24,752 - 38,461

12,376 – 19,231

2 months

$3,000

$6,188.000 $9,615,250

31,673

15,837

3 months

$3,000

$11,877,375

Serving less than 12
months

Eligible
Admissions

Program
Length

Yearly Cost
of Program

Total Cost

Sentenced to Life

1,081

541

6 months

$10,000

$2,702,500

Sentenced to 20 years
or more

2,290

1,145

6 months

$10,000

$5,725,000

Low risk to recidivate

7,520

3,760

6 months

$4,000

$7,520,000

21,568

21,568

9 months

$5,000

$80,880,000

High needs and high risk
to recidivate
(Total Eligible for
Programs)

55,226 – 62,081

In Prison Program Costs
(Plus additional custody costs of 5%)
Total In Prison Program Costs

$114,892,875 - $118,320,125
$5,523 - $6,208
$120,637,519 - $124,236,131

In addition to the in-prison resources required to fund these programmatic initiatives, the
CDCR also needs to invest heavily in post-prison aftercare. In-prison programming must be
followed up in the community in order to achieve the desired reductions in recidivism and
the CDCR must also have the resources to create a variety of intermediate sanctions and
programs in order to divert the large number of technical violators from prison that we are
recommending. We are assuming a variety of programming needs for between 120,000 and
125,000 parolees.ak Our funding recommendation includes enough money for an average
of six months of intensive programming for all these parolees. At a cost of $7,500 for an
annual program slot, the total funding required is between $450 and $469 million. The total
funds needed for in prison and community based programming is between $628 and $652
million.

Savings from Overcrowding Reduction Strategies
Based on the recommendations outlined (summarized in Table E-6), we expect to save
between 39,000 and 44,000 beds (see Table E-6). Using the CDCR marginal-overcrowding
rate of $20,597 per bed, we expect to save a total of between $803 and $906 million
annually.

Savings from Recidivism Reductions
Based on research, we are assuming an overall reduction in recidivism range of 5 to 10
percent for new felony convictions as a result of these new programming initiatives. The
most important result of this reduction is, of course, less crime and fewer victims. There is
an added benefit that since fewer people on parole will return to prison for new crimes, the
prison system will require fewer prison beds. The estimated result of Recommendation 4
is that between 1,097 and 2,194 parole violators with new felonies do not return to prison
(See Table E-3). Assuming an average length of stay of 24 months, this would result in a
decrease of between 2,194 to 4,388 beds and an annual budget savings of between $45
and $90 million.

ak	
In 2006, there were 131,356 admissions to parole (CDCR). We reduced this number by 6,500
to 11,500 based on the expected effects of our population management strategies. See Table E-6.
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Budget Offsets
Though we are recommending significant funding for both in-prison and community-based
programming, the CDCR already spends money on these functions that can offset the
costs of the programming we are recommending (Again, this will not happen overnight as
CDCR would need to hire different kinds of staff, contract with different organizations to
provide the services, and generally transition from one set of program designs and priorities
to another. This will take time but in the long run the current and planned programmatic
budgets of the CDCR can be used to help “pay” for these investments). We estimate that
the CDCR currently spends $340 million to deliver a variety of programmatic interventions
both in prison and after release to its adult offender populations.al

Financial Summary
Table E-8 summarizes the overall new funding needed for additional prison and community
programs, the savings realized through our recommended population management
strategies and reductions in recidivism, and the offsets to the new funding that are part of
CDCR’s baseline budget.
Table E-8: Total Costs and Savings of Proposed Programming and Population Reduction Strategies
Costs
Costs

Cost of Prison
Programs

$120,637,519 $124,236,131

Cost of ParoleCommunity
Corrections

$450,000,000 $468,750,000

Total Costs

$570,637,519 $592,986,131

+ 10% increased CA
costs*

$57,063,752 $59,298,613

Net Costs

$627,701,271 $652,284,744

Bed Reduction Prison Bed Savings
Savings

Offsets

Dollar Savings

Bed Savings

$803,283,000 - $906,268,000

Recidivism Savings

$45,181,579 - $90,379,636

Total Bed Reduction Savings

$848,464,579 - $996,647,636

Current Budget Funding for Prison and
Parole Programming

$340 000,000

Total Current Spending

$340,000,000

Total Savings

$1,188,464,579 – $1,336,647,636

Net Savings

$560,763,308 - $684,362,892

Beds saved through population reduction
Beds saved through recidivism reduction
Overall Bed Savings

38,000 – 44,000
2,200 – 4,400
41,200 – 48,400

*A preliminary estimate of the increased costs for funding correctional programs in California compared to the
rest of the country. See Gordon et. al. (2007).

al	

This figure is an estimate based on the current CDCR budget.
98

APPENDIX E—estimating the impacts of our recommendations

In this report we recommend strategies that would reduce the number of prison beds that
California needs by 42,000 to 48,000 beds. The result would mean an annual savings of
between $848 and $996 million. New investments in prison and community programming
should cost between $628 and $652 million a year. A significant portion of these costs, or
$340 million a year, which the CDCR now spends on programs, could ultimately be used
to offset these new expenditures. In total, all of these new strategies combined could save
California between $561 and $684 million a year.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

100

APPENDIX F— EXPANDED SPACE AND SAFETY RECOMMENDATIONS

Appendix F—Expanded Space and Safety Recommendations
This section of the report contains the Panel’s detailed recommendations concerning the
physical context of CDCR programming.

Program Space Concerns
The largest barrier that the Panel identified to delivering effective programming in CDCR
prison facilities is its current state of overcrowding. CDCR facilities were built to hold
100,000 offenders; however, at the time of this report, the CDCR was currently housing
172,385 offenders in its prisons. Because of this overcrowding situation, there is simply not
enough space to conduct effective programming—this applies to both the male and female
offender populations. Due to time and budget constraints, we were unable to obtain data
concerning specific details as to how the CDCR is utilizing its designated program spaces,
although we suspect that some of them are being used to house offenders.

Physical Safety Concerns
The CDCR tracks the number of prisoner population lockdowns and controlled movement
events by each institution. The degree to which the CDCR quickly re-opens the affected
facility within an institution to allow prisoner access to programming or allows the noninvolved prisoners to attend programs, will impact its ability to support effective program
delivery.
Table E-1: CDCR Adult Institution Lockdown Summary, 2006
Mission-Based, Facility Type*

Number of LockdownsControlled Movements

Average Days in
Lockdown

Events over 60
Days

Calendar Year 2006
General Population Levels II &
III

169

12

6

General Population Levels III
& IV

114

18

5

High Security & Transition
Housing

134

7

17

32

3

0

Female Institutions
Source: CDCR
*Does not include Reception Centers

Table E-1 provides data concerning the number of lockdown days during 2006, among the
33 adult prison institutions (except Reception Centers).
The frequency and duration of lockdowns and controlled movement at any given time,
among the 33 institutions, is a daily challenge to the CDCR, and one which most California
citizens are unaware. Institution or facility lockdowns (or controlled movements of
prisoners) occur when serious incidents happen that require additional levels of control.
The employees who deliver programming to the prisoners are present five days a week,
eight hours each day, with some down time for program audits, training, and program
adjustments. The security protocols that the CDCR applies immediately after a serious
incident within an institution, in an attempt to ensure safety to prisoners, staff, and the
public, causes the prisoners to be absent from their assigned program areas, and away from
the program staff. The overcrowding conditions also contribute to the challenge handled by
those employees who are ready and able to deliver programming to the prisoners, that is,
not enough program space and not enough employees to deliver essential programs to meet
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

the needs of the prisoners.
The CDCR should continue its progress in reviewing its lockdown and lockdown lifting
protocols, and its controlled movement protocols, at each institution to determine the extent
to which prisoner programming can be safely and quickly resumed following a serious
incident. This periodic review is a good security practice and supports the ever-changing
types of prisoners being housed in a facility within an institution. Where lockdowns are
prolonged, CDCR should expect staff to develop alternate delivery methods of programming
to housing areas, without serious detriment to program fidelity and without serious
interference with security needs.
Recommendations
In addition to what we have already stated, we offer these recommendations, which
are based primarily on the fact the CDCR is overcrowded and violence and safety issues
are related to overcrowding in any system. These recommendations are also based on
comments from CDCR staff members whom we interviewed who shared with us their
perspectives about the negative effect that lockdowns were having on programming in their
facilities. For staff to be able to appropriately deliver programs and for offenders
to be able to fully benefit from them, adequate and safe spaces for programming
must be created. The CDCR must take steps to reduce the overcrowding in its facilities. If
this does not occur, the positive impact of increased and/or more focused programming will
be adversely affected.
While it is reducing its overcrowding, there are additional steps the CDCR can and should
take to improve staff and offender safety.

First, the CDCR should review assaults, disturbances, and lockdowns by facility to

determine which facilities offer a safe environment and which are problematic. Those
facilities that the CDCR deems to be safe should be the first facilities where it implements
new or improved programs. Those facilities that the CDCR deems to be problematic should
be reviewed to determine what steps need to be taken to improve safety in those locations.
As those facilities improve their safety levels, the CDCR should implement programming in
those facilities that enhances those safety improvements.

Second, experience shows that drugs are often the source of disorder within facilities.

Experience at the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections demonstrates that it is possible
with the implementation of a comprehensive drug interdiction program to reduce the
random positive rate to less than 1%. Such a program would include interdiction (dogs,
drug detection devices, and searches of vehicles and everyone who enters the facility);
facility searches (cells and common areas); regular random and target drug tests; penalties
(loss of contact visiting, loss of visits, and banning from facilities); treatment for those
with drug problems; and tracking of various outcome measures. In this regard it must be
remembered that visits are the most frequent sources of contraband entering facilities. Most
states search visitors and use cameras in visiting areas to attempt to stem the flow of drugs
and other contraband into their prisons. Additionally, while it is unfortunate that a few staff
get involved in bringing contraband into facilities, it is critical for the safety of all concerned
that the CDCR implement measures to limit this potential additional avenue for drugs to
enter its system. Regular use of metal detectors on everyone (including staff), random staff
pat searches, and use of electronic drug detection devices must be a part of any overall
safety program.

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APPENDIX F— EXPANDED SPACE AND SAFETY RECOMMENDATIONS

Third, the CDCR should begin to use walk-through and hand-held metal detectors

throughout its facilities. These tools can aid significantly in reducing the amount of weapons
used by offenders. The CDCR can set up stations for these valuable tools at entrances to
yards, cell blocks, and work areas.

Fourth, the CDCR should develop a vulnerability analysis (VA) program similar to what is

used by the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections. The VA program involves training
staff members to routinely assess institutions on a variety of security measures. Trained
staff members from other institutions conduct the assessment, which differs from a normal
review of policy compliance, in that they actually performance test various security systems.
This activity, coupled with a policy that requires ongoing complacency drills that test such
things as escapes, contraband introduction, prisoner accountability, tool control, etc., can
significantly improve staff and offender safety, as well as increase the public safety of
surrounding communities.

Finally, if facility reviews reveal that one or more facilities have significant issues, the CDCR

should consider the possibility that the issue may be systemic rather than local. In these
cases, the CDCR should develop a comprehensive approach to addressing these issues.
Other states with similar issues have used staff from other facilities to conduct unannounced
lockdowns and searches of problematic facilities. Another best practices approach is to
permanently or temporarily transfer and re-assign staff and offenders to different facilities.
Both of these approaches have proven to be effective in turning around problematic
facilities.

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104

APPENDIX G— CDCR FEMALE OFFENDER REFORM

Appendix G—CDCR Female Offender Reform
The CDCR Female Offender Reform effort recognizes the importance of developing genderresponsive strategies to address the specific needs of female offenders. The overarching
goal of this effort is the development and implementation of a comprehensive genderresponsive female offender rehabilitation and management program. The CDCR encourages
policies, programs, and procedures that foster personal growth, accountability, self-reliance,
education, life skills, workplace skills, and the maintenance of family and community
relationships. The objective is to promote the female offender’s successful rehabilitation and
reintegration into society and subsequently reduce recidivism.
By providing female offenders with the skills and treatment necessary to break the pattern
of criminal activity, the CDCR is improving the female offender’s chances of successful
reintegration into society and helping to break the intergenerational cycle of incarceration.

Highlights of Recent Accomplishments
The following are highlights of the accomplishments of the Division of Adult Institutions,
Female Offender Programs and Services Female Offender Reform effort:

Gender Responsive Strategies Commission
In February 2005, the Division established a Gender Responsive Strategies Commission
(GRSC) as an Advisory Committee to assess and make recommendations on proposed
strategies, policies and plans specific to women offenders. The Commission is comprised of
representatives of community, state, local, legislative, and labor organizations; previously
incarcerated individuals; staff representing the various disciplines within the CDCR and
nationally recognized researchers in the field of female incarceration. Commission meetings
are held bi-monthly.

Adopted Recommendations from the Little Hoover Commission, Senate Resolution
33 Committee, Assembly Bill 90, and the National Institute of Corrections
In March, 2005, the Division adopted the recommendations of the Little Hoover Commission
(LHC), Senate Resolution 33, Assembly Bill 90, and the guiding principles of the National
Institute of Corrections (NIC) report prepared by Drs. Bloom, Owen, and Covington.

CDCR Strategic Plan 5.3.6.
In April 2005, the Division developed strategies specific to female offenders that have been
incorporated in the CDCR Strategic Plan 5.3.6. These strategies are based both on the data
profiles of women offenders and a vision for reducing recidivism by targeting women’s
pathways to prison.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Elimination of Body Searches of Clothed Female Prisoners by Male Staff
On May 26, 2005, the CDCR revised its regulations and eliminated pat searches of female
prisoners by male staff members. This was based on studies conducted by the Department
of Justice which found that more than 57% of incarcerated females have been sexually
or physically abused at some time in their lives, and on case law that established that
body searches of previously victimized female offenders by male staff contribute to retraumatization.

Phased Housing Plan
In January 2006, the CDCR developed a phased housing plan to shift 4,500 Level I and II
female offenders to community-based, smaller facilities (Female Rehabilitative Community
Correctional Centers). This will be complimented by provision of “wrap around” services
including pre-release planning, gender-specific health care, education, vocation and work
programs, as well as substance abuse and trauma treatment.

Examination of CDCR Classification System for Female Prisoners
In August 2006, CDCR contracted with Dr. Pat Van Voorhis, University of Cincinnati, to
examine the CDCR’s current classification system in terms of validity, over-classification
and assessment of risk/needs relevant to correctional rehabilitation with a focus on gender
responsiveness. The formal evaluation of the existing system has been completed. A report
was provided to executive staff on December 5, 2006, and the contract was secured for an
expert to assist a task group with implementation steps and a design study for validating a
new classification model for women offenders.

Leo Chesney Community Correctional Facility—Trauma-Informed Substance Abuse
Treatment Program
This is the first trauma-informed in-custody program funded through the CDCR’s female
offender reform initiative, as well as the first substance abuse program put into place
in a community correctional facility. Gender-responsive services to be provided include
substance abuse treatment and education, trauma treatment, life skills, recreational
activities, relapse prevention, sober living skills, parenting and transitional planning for
continuing care services. Individual, group, and family counseling will also be provided.

Female Residential Multi-Service Center
A Request for Proposal is currently being advertised for 575 female parolee beds statewide
through a new program entitled the Female Residential Multi-Service Center (FRMSC). The
CDCR has been providing services through the Residential Multi-Service Center Program
since 1991; however, the programs have not been gender-responsive and served both
men and women in one facility. This program has been developed specifically for females
and addresses the needs of women through a gender-responsive program model. Genderresponsive services to be provided at the FRMSCs include conducting a risk and needs
assessment, development of an individualized treatment plan, substance abuse education,
treatment and counseling, trauma treatment, vocational services, life skills development,
strengthening of family relationships, coordinated case management, establishment of
alumni groups, referral to other agencies as needed and discharge planning.

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APPENDIX G— CDCR FEMALE OFFENDER REFORM

Future Expectations
We expect that in 2007, the Division of Adult Institutions, Female Offender Programs and
Services will accomplish these initiatives for California’s female offenders:
•	 Create and distribute a Female Offender Master Plan that provides the framework for the
programming and management of all female offenders.
•	 Award contracts and activation of female rehabilitative community correctional centers
that house non-serious, non-violent female offenders.
•	 Design and implement a mandatory, 40-hour specialized, gender-responsive training for
all CDCR staff members who work with female offenders.
•	 Begin the development of a gender-responsive classification system for female
offenders.
•	 Implement an Individualized Treatment and Rehabilitative Plan (ITRP) which combines
a risk needs assessment with an individualized case management plan for female
offenders.
•	 Activate the Bonding Mother with Babies program for 20 female offenders and their
babies at the California Institution for Women (CIW).
•	 Fully implement the Parent-Child Visitation program that will work to build and
strengthen systems of family support and family involvement during the period of a
mother’s incarceration at the CIW.
•	 Complete the Planning and Design Summits that will assist with the development of a
Master Plan for the women’s substance abuse treatment in institutions and communitybased programs.
•	 Activate the female civil addicts’ participation in the community-based Drug Treatment
Furlough program.
•	 Continue to recruit and hire social workers to support the Third Day Visiting program and
the Chowchilla Family Bus Express and Family Reunification efforts.
•	 Review the final report of the Victimization and Female Offenders national expert and
develop evidence-based interventions for female offenders based upon the nature of the
identified findings of the national expert.
•	 Activate additional beds at the Drug Treatment Furlough program.
•	 Activate the Fresno Family Foundation Program.
•	 Activate the Community Prisoner Mother Program.

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108

APPENDIX H—ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS FAST TRACK PROGRAM

Appendix H—Arizona Department of Corrections Fast Track
Program

Arizona Department of Corrections
Fast Track Program
August 14, 2006
INTRODUCTION
In April 2006, Director Schriro approved a male and female pilot program for 200 minimum
custody male inmates at ASPC-Florence / North Unit II and a 200 minimum custody female
inmates at ASPC-Perryville / Santa Maria Unit. For the females, it will include all DUI, RTC
and “Other” minimum custody Fast Track inmates.
Two Fast Track Workgroups will be established – one for North Unit II and one for Santa
Maria Unit. Staff met on a regular basis to discuss the implementation processes, from Initial
Intake, needs and discharge planning.
OBJECTIVE
The primary goal of the Fast Track program is to effectively and efficiently identify inmates
for programming and expedited discharge planning who will be serving an incarceration period
of six months or less. Once identified, our objective will be to have these inmates undergo an
expedient classification, medical, mental health and substance abuse treatment assessment and
screening process for identification of basic programming opportunities. Brief, evidence based
programs will employ cognitive behavioral strategies that will be provided to the Fast Track
inmates, only in a shorter period of time (i.e. Functional literacy/GED, anger management,
cultural diversity and domestic violence.) Medical and mental health screening assessments
will be used to determine those inmates with physical and/or psychological limitations,
medication needs, work assignment limitations and eligibility for programs with agencies such
as, ValueOptions and ACCCHS for continuity of care.
PROCESS
Due to the short incarceration time of Fast Track inmates, brief and basic programming will be
available for this population. An initial assessment will be completed at intake by Correctional
Officer III staff and Education staff in the following areas: Education needs, substance abuse
medical, mental health and classification. The Fast Track facility will finalize the Corrections
Plan which will include Cognitive Restructuring and “Pack Your Bags” Discharge planning.
In order to meet our goals and objectives we will begin to outline our assessments into the
following priority order, although some of these programs can occur simultaneously.

1
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

(1)

Education programming for an inmate will be based on their need for either,
GED, Functional Literacy or both. Inmates will be tested to identify those
areas of need for tutorial assistance in order for them to obtain and meet
education standards.

(2)

Substance abuse education programming and/or substance abuse treatment
programming will be based on the inmates need as well. This module is a
part of the Texas Christian University (TCU), evidence based program that
has cognitive restructuring components integrated throughout each module
of the program.

(3)

The final priority for programming is release preparation through the “Pack
Your Bags” Discharge Planning. The program components will be
increasingly integrated throughout other programming offered in 7x3x3 to
help prepare and assists inmates nearing their time to release for reentry back
into the community. Inmates will be assessed by the Correctional Officer III
in coordination with a Parole Officer in the areas outlined in the “Pack Your
Bags/Discharge Planning. The objective is to provide inmates with the
necessary “tools” to help them become civil and productive members of the
community and to be successful in their integration.

In addition to the basic programs referenced above, the inmate will be required to participate in
work assignments. Work assignments will be included for the Fast Track population and will
be based on inmate skills, work availability and need.
Along with the basic programs will be Self Development/Free Time and Family/Community
programming. Each Fast Track unit will offer programs that fall under both categories. In
addition, the units will provide Alcoholics Anonymous, Narcotics Anonymous, Cocaine
Anonymous, Crystal Meth Anonymous and Religious Services.
CONCLUSION
In order to adequately prepare this population for reentry, we have to first address those needs
that contribute to the inmate’s criminality and behavior. We will offer basic programs that will
directly contribute to the reduction of recidivism, revocation and relapse.

2
110

APPENDIX H—ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS FAST TRACK PROGRAM

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS

FAST TRACK CORRECTIONS PLAN
Inmate Number ________

Inmate Name _________

Custody Level: Minimum___
1. Community
Intervention Level
Directions: See DI57 screen.
Find the inmate’s “Community
General Risk Level” and mark
the appropriate level in the
appropriate row (G1-G7). Then
view the “Community Violence
Risk Level” and mark the
appropriate level in the
appropriate column (V1-V8).
Find the intersecting point and
circle the Risk Level (1-5).

IR Level: _2

Loc Code B34

Release Date: 12_ / _20 / _2006

Community
General
Risk Level

V1

V2

V3

V4

V5

V6

V7

V8

G1
G2
G3
G4
G5
G6
G7

1
2
2
4
4
4
4

2
2
2
4
4
4
4

2
3
3
4
4
4
4

2
3
3
4
4
4
4

4
4
4
4
4
4
4

5
5
5
5
5
5
5

5
5
5
5
5
5
5

5
5
5
5
5
5
5

Community Violence Risk Level

2. Risk Level: If inmate’s Risk Level in #1 is 1 or 2 (shaded area above), proceed directly to #4 and enter
“None – Risk Lev < 3” in Intervention Strategy column for each program area. If inmate’s Risk Level is greater
than 2, proceed to #3.

3. Program Needs
Directions: Review the
criteria for each program and
circle each program area
criteria description “No Need”
or “Need” as appropriate.

Scoring Criteria
Pgm

No Need

Need

Education

Time remaining til release <
1 month

TBD by Education staff

Substance
Abuse
Education

Time remaining til release <
2 months

SA referral level (DI83) 1, 2
or 3 & time remaining til
release > 2 months

Anger
Managemnt

Time remaining til release <
1 month

Current violent offense or
current violent discipline
violation + time remaining til
release > 1 month

Cognitive
Restructring

Time remaining til release <
1 month

Time remaining til release >
1 month

Domestic
Violence

Time remaining til release <
2 months

Dom Violence conviction &
time remaining til release > 2
months

Cultural
Diversity

Time remaining til release <
1 month

Time remaining til release >
1 month

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APPENDIX I— SAFE neighborhoods summary

Appendix I—The Important Role of the Community in the
Correctional Process

Communities are an often overlooked contributor to continuing recidivism by offenders
newly released from prison or parole. Attempts to reduce risk of future criminal behaviors
must reach beyond the walls of the correctional agency and embrace the communities from
which offenders come and to which they will eventually return.
Communities consist of residents, businesses, families, schools, religious leaders, and
others and often define the range of acceptable behavior for the people living within them.
Highly disadvantaged communities tend to suffer from more violence and disorder due to
sociological, political, and economic factors. An analysis of communities in California shows
that there are some communities that have higher numbers of offenders than others. Figure
H-1 provides a graphical representation of the number of prisoners released by the CDCR
and the counties to which they returned.
Figure I-1: Number of Prisoner Releases by California County, 2006
Source: CDCR

An analysis of the data presented in Figure H-1 shows that a significant proportion of
California’s prisoners are released in the southern counties of the state. Table H-1, which
provides the distribution of all California parolees by county, supports this conclusion.am

am	
The Expert Panel wishes to thank John Hipp, Ph.D. at the Center for Evidence-Based
Corrections at UC Irvine for providing the maps and tables used in this appendix.
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table I-1: Percentage of Parolees by California County, July 1, 2006
County

% of CA Parolees
30.82%

Los Angeles

San Bernardino

8.57%

San Diego

7.10%

Riverside

6.42%

Orange

5.90%

Sacramento

4.07%

Fresno

3.87%

Santa Clara

3.79%

Kern

3.70%

Alameda

3.32%

All Others

25.76%

Source: CDCR

Summary of California Community Data
•	 A relatively large number of parolees return to a small number of counties.
The four southern counties of Los Angeles, San Bernardino, San Diego, and Riverside
accounted for over half of all parolees (53 percent) on July 1, 2006. The county of Los
Angeles alone accounted for fully 30 percent of these parolees.
•	 There is some evidence of geographic clustering of parolees in Los Angeles
County. There is some evidence of clustering in the central and south-central parts of
the county. In the county overall, the top 1% of the census tracts contained 8.6% of
the parolees on July 1, 2006. The top 5% of the census tracts contained 23.5% of the
parolees. The top 10% of the census tracts contained 36.5% of the parolees.
•	 Prisoners are returning to neighborhoods with higher levels of social and
economic disadvantage. In Los Angeles County, the census tracts with high numbers
of parolees have poverty rates over double that of tracts with low numbers of parolees.
These high-parolee tracts also have double the proportion single parent households,
double the unemployment rate, 43% lower median income, and over double the violent
crime rate of low-parolee tracts.
This trend is not unique to California. Eric Cadora and his team from the Justice Mapping
Center have studied carefully the migration patterns of offenders in, out, and back into
specific high density neighborhoods using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in several
American communities (see www.justicemapping.org). What is clear is that the residential
origins of offender populations on probation, in prison, and on parole are not random, but
highly concentrated—even more so than crime—in specific neighborhoods and, literally,
specific streets.

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APPENDIX I— SAFE neighborhoods summary

These high-concentration communities need our concerted attention to improve public
safety and community well-being. Research has shown that they key to reducing violent
crime is collective efficacy, which is defined as social cohesion among neighbors combined
with their willingness to intervene on behalf of the common good. Investing in these
communities will reduce the demands on the state for correctional and health services
by reducing the criminal toxicity of these communities and replacing it with fortitude and
capability to address the full range of negative social indicators from violence to unwed
pregnancy to high school drop outs (Sampson, Raudenbush, and Earls, 1997). We believe
that California should start directing some of its attention and dollars to develop programs
and services that will help targeted communities become places that stop producing new
offenders and start preventing released offenders from returning to prison. In the long run,
we believe that this will help reduce California’s recidivism to an even greater degree than
spending money on the correctional system will.

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APPENDIX I— SAFE neighborhoods summary

Appendix J—Implementation Requirements
In this section we present information for implementing our recommendations in the current
CDCR contexts. As our recommendations are based on general principles and practices, our
purpose in this chapter is to apply those principles and practices specifically to the existing
situations within the CDCR. This chapter describes the barriers that we have identified to
implementing our recommendations in California and proposes solutions to those barriers.
We have classified our barriers into four major categories: (a) legislative, (b) structural, (c)
cultural, and (d) societal (or community).

Legislative Barriers and Solutions:
The primary legislative barriers are lack of access to rehabilitation programming and lack
of incentives for completing it. California’s elected officials need to re-examine their current
sentencing laws and system to effectively reduce the numbers of offenders in its currently
overcrowded prisons and overloaded parole offices. Building more prisons is not the only
answer to this problem. We refer the reader to Appendix A and urge California’s leaders to
implement some of those previously recommended population management initiatives.
On the incentive side, we cannot stress enough the importance of providing offenders with
motivation to complete rehabilitation programs and positively manage their behaviors.
Californians need to realize that providing offenders with incentives that will allow them to
get out of prison or off of parole early by completing rehabilitation programs or managing
their behaviors is not equal to being “soft on crime.” Rather, they are a necessary component
of successful human behavior modification strategies.

Structural Barriers and Solutions:
Organizational Structure
The Panel had the opportunity to review two organizational structures in the period of
its existence. The first structure that we reviewed in December 2006, was perplexing. It
appeared to us that the only decision-maker in the entire organization was the Secretary
of the CDCR. Lines of authority and responsibility were so diffused and overlapping that
gridlock was the only possible result. This organizational structure was not well-designed
and caused problems in administration and the field, especially in the area of efficient and
coherent decision-making.
In March-April 2007, the new CDCR Secretary, James Tilton, developed a new organizational
structure, which we felt was a vast improvement over its predecessor. However, we believe
that there are additional steps the CDCR needs to take to reorganize itself to take full
advantage of our recommendations:
•	 Clearly delineate lines of authority and responsibility from administration to the field.
Eliminate overlapping and conflicting responsibilities that occur at multiple locations in
the organization. Develop clear lines of communication to facilitate information flow in all
directions in the organization.
•	 Decentralize decision-making to the lowest level in the organization that is capable of
making the decision. It should not take three or four high-level administrators to make
decisions that could be decided at the operational unit level.
•	 Establish clear lines of accountability within the organization. Everyone in the
organization, from the Secretary down to the entry-level employee, should know exactly
what duties and tasks he or she is responsible for and to whom he or she reports.
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

•	 Centralize policy-making in the administration. The administration should determine
policies, resolve policy issues, provide direction to field units for implementing those
policies, and audit field units for policy compliance. Field unit leaders (wardens, parole
office managers, etc.) should be responsible for implementing policies (security,
programming, health, mental health, etc) and held accountable for achieving or not
achieving policy objectives.
•	 Consolidate program service functions (academic education, vocation education (workbased), substance abuse treatment, and other program focus areas) under the CDCR
Adult Programs Division and give that Division the authority to implement and resolve
program policy issues. The CDCR Adult Programs Division should also be responsible
for determining which programs will be delivered in which facilities. Additionally,
create dotted-line reporting structures from the field units to the CDCR Adult Programs
Division. Make the field unit directors accountable to the CDCR Adult Programs Division
for delivering and measuring the effectiveness and outcomes of evidence-based
programming in their field units.

Technology Infrastructure
The current state of CDCR’s technology infrastructure is insufficient, inadequate, and lacks
the basic power, network, and telecommunications capabilities to function as an integrated
enterprise. Less than one-third of the facilities and employees in the CDCR are connected
to the network. This means that sharing information on offenders’ behavior management
plans and rehabilitation program process between facilities and across divisions is virtually
impossible. Furthermore, the infrastructure within the Institutions not constructed to deliver
rehabilitation programming electronically. This means that CDCR offenders don’t have
access to the latest innovations in rehabilitation programming content and delivery.
In January 2007, the California Department of Finance approved funding for the CDCR’s
Feasibility Study Report for the Consolidated Information Technology Infrastructure Project
(CITIP). The CITIP is a multi-year project whose goal is to significantly increase the number
of stations on the network, as well as the bandwidth. However, most of the CDCR’s older
facilities will need intensive (and time consuming) structural retrofits to be able to use the
expanded technology.
We recommend that the CDCR continue on this course of improving its technology
infrastructure as it is a critical component for the delivery of effective rehabilitation
programming in prison and in the community. We further encourage the CDCR to ensure
that all future facilities that it constructs are built with the necessary conduits and
security measures to be able to allow staff and program providers in those facilities to
take advantage of technological advancements in data management and rehabilitation
programming.

Labor Contracts
As we reviewed current operations and listened to both staff members and affiliated
stakeholder groups, it became clear to us that a major obstacle to implementing a more
focused and intensified rehabilitation program would be current contract provisions in
the CDCR’s labor contracts. We believe that to a large degree management rights and
responsibilities have been negotiated away in previous contracts and feel that the CDCR and
the California Department of Personnel Administration need to make every effort to regain
those rights in the current round of negotiations. The process as it currently exists supports
only the status quo and discourages management from implementing any innovative or
necessary programming. For example, for the CDCR to adopt and implement a new risk
to reoffend assessment tool to be able to assign the right offender to the right program
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APPENDIX J— IMPLEMENTATION REQUIREMENTS

means that it will have to modify the job requirements for some of its staff members. As we
understand the current labor environment, it could take the CDCR several months or even
years to negotiate the use of an objective risk assessment tool by its correctional officers
and probation agents. If true, this would seriously hamper California’s ability to reduce its
recidivism rate in the foreseeable future, as the assessment of risk and need is the first step
in the process of providing effective rehabilitation programming. We strongly recommend
that the CDCR leadership work with the labor union representatives to streamline the
process for making needed job modifications so that it can more quickly implement those
solutions that will improve the organization.

Cultural Barriers and Solutions:
Organizational Culture
As mentioned in the report, despite the name and mission changes that added rehabilitation
to the CDCR, we found its organizational culture to still be largely “institutional”—focused on
incarceration rather than rehabilitation. We understand that to some degree it will take time
for the new mission to saturate all areas of the agency, especially considering its size. To
facilitate that process, we recommend these activities:
Focus on CDCR senior managers (Secretary’s office and all senior leadership positions
including programming, institutions, parole, research-evaluation, IT, etc.). The CDCR’s
senior managers must understand and agree with the Panel’s key recommendations,
especially the underlying principles and practices. Senior management must also agree to:
(a)	
(b)	
(c)	
(d)	
(e)	
(f)	
(g)	
(h)	

a shared organizational vision
key benchmarks for implementing organizational improvement
a seamless integration of prison and parole officers in (rehabilitation) programming
use risk to reoffend (vs. institutional risk) as the primary driver for programming in
prison and the community and for parole supervision
understand and apply the differences between program noncompliance and criminal
behavior
understand how correctional and parole officers can be “agents of change” for
offenders
agree to develop the officers under their authority as agents of change for offenders
understand and apply the importance of community partners as part of the “solution”

The CDCR’s senior managers should be involved in at least a two-day planning session
with biweekly meetings for the first six months on these concepts. During this time, they
should decide what process they will use to assess their current organizational culture
and its readiness to implement these changes. This group should also develop a plan to
communicate the results of their work to the organization’s employees. It is important that
during these working sessions, senior managers are assigned to cross-sectional groups to
facilitate systemic improvement.
Focus on the next level of management (parole officer chiefs and wardens). Replicate
senior management agreements and activities with the next level of management within the
CDCR. Report results back to senior management group.
Develop cross-sectional teams to develop policy and procedures for the
organization that support the Panel’s recommendations. It is important to have a
cross-sectional team build the new policies and operational procedures for the organization.
These teams should involve all levels of the organization and report their findings to the
senior management group.
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Begin coaching and skills development activities for managers and key employees
in the organization.
a.	 Provide managers with leadership coaching and management skills development.
All managers should be trained in and held accountable for using “participatory
management practices.” These practices will help managers obtain buy-in from their
employees on the proposed organizational changes. It will also foster a sense of joint
ownership (between the manager and the employee) as the organization progresses
through the change process.
b.	 Provide key employees with skills training for: interviewing offenders, motivating
offenders, gaining offender compliance, risk and needs assessments, case planning,
managing behavioral contracts, and characteristics and needs special offender
types (e.g., drug offenders, sex offenders, aggressive, gang members, etc.). These
trainings should be started at the academy level with new staff and continued
through periodic refreshers courses throughout the entire career of each employee.
Use the train-the-trainer model where key employees become “experts” in areas
of focus and then train other employees. These trainers should be the first level
supervisors in the prisons and parole offices for staff graduating from the academies. In
addition to training others, the experts should focus working on problem cases.
Select parole and prison sites that desire to implement the panel
recommendations. Begin work on the implementation plan using a team composed of
a cross section of employees from within the organization, as well as selected community
partners.

Employee Development
As the CDCR continues its work to provide quality rehabilitative programming to offenders
it should not assume that its employees are prepared to deliver and supervise this work.
As we have mentioned elsewhere, an effective correctional system is the result of a welltrained workforce. Whether the training relates to custody or treatment responsibilities, the
critical nature of employee development can make or break a correctional system.
Traditionally, and usually as a condition of employment, correctional employees participate
in both pre-service and in-service training programs. Commonly, more highly developed
or specialized training is provided on a variety of subject areas. Employee attendance
at conferences, workshops, and seminars regularly benefit the employee, as well as the
agency. Moreover, we recommended that employees engage in continuing education at postsecondary institutions and trade schools, which will better prepare them for working in their
particular disciplines. And, of course, some professionals such as clinicians, counselors, and
others are required by law to complete a designated number of continuing education units
annually.
In addition, we recommend that the CDCR consider the training opportunities provided by
the U.S. Department of Justice, National Institute of Corrections, and the Office of Justice
Programs. These two federal agencies often provide specialized training and/or technical
assistance at little or no cost to the government participant. Universities, non-government
organizations, and some for-profit groups are also good training resources.

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APPENDIX J— IMPLEMENTATION REQUIREMENTS

The challenges of providing employee training can be expensive and times consuming,
however, the benefits of making professional development a priority are considerable. On
the other hand, the effects of not focusing on personnel training can be disastrous. Quality
management principles dictate that tasks should be “done right the first time.” This cannot
be achieved without the investment of well-organized and well-delivered staff training. To
deliver the training, a host of full-time and adjunct training personnel will be needed. Most
correctional systems depend on a train-the-trainer model in order to save costs.
As the new or redesigned programming is integrated into the CDCR, the requirement for
employee preparation will be enormous. For instance, conducting effective risk assessments
will require talented and well-trained employees to perform this obligation. Employees
will also have to be comfortable with and competent in the use of technology since many
offender programs are computer-based, such as GED preparation and testing. In fact,
information technology is the cornerstone for many effective training programs and so the
CDCR will need to ensure that its employees have developed skill in this competency area.
Deploying sound curricula of professional enrichment may be important in other ways. For
instance, litigation may be avoided, or at least mitigated, if mistakes are minimized. Often,
law suits are based on “failure to train” standards. In many instances, the standard is not
just “to train,” but “to train adequately.”
By addressing all of these considerations with its employees, the CDCR will solidify its
position to offer effective programming to its adult offender population and reduce their
rates of reoffending.

Quality Assurance
Changing the organizational culture in order to implement evidence-based principles is a
complex process involving dozens of intermediate objectives. In order to realize the goal
of reducing recidivism, each organizational change objective must align with the principles,
and the change must be maintained over time. An effective Quality Assurance Plan can
serve as a roadmap for maintaining fidelity to the principles.
A comprehensive quality assurance plan is an invaluable tool in implementing evidencebased practice. The plan provides a clear blueprint of the organization’s goals and how
they will be achieved. In the implementation phase, the plan allows stakeholders to
track progress, maintain accountability, and keep a multi-faceted project on track. In the
Maintenance phase, the plan encourages ongoing learning, professional development,
and high standard of performance. Quality assurance should be incorporated into the
implementation of evidence-based practice from the outset, with the goal of creating a
“culture of quality” in the organization.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Societal (or Community) Barriers and Solutions:
The Panel wishes that it had been given more time to prepare its report. Had that been
the case, then we would have spent more time looking at this very important area of
correctional programming. As such, we urge the CDCR to continue to foster, nurture,
and expand its partnerships with local governments and community-based organizations
to provide seamless delivery of programming and services between prison-based and
community-based providers. We recommend that it continues to include family members
and other community members in the rehabilitation process of its offenders. And finally, and
probably most importantly to released offenders, we recommend that roadblocks to finding
meaningful employment be addressed.
To those community leaders and local agency administrators who are reading this report,
we urge you to reach out to the CDCR to develop proactive and collaborative methods for
working with offenders while they are still in prison to help ensure that once released, they
become productive and contributing members of your communities. Particular attention
needs to be paid to providing transitioning offenders with access to programs and services
that will help them maintain their sobriety, find places to live, and obtain employment. If
communities are able to help the CDCR provide these critical things to offenders, then they
will become a real part of the solution to California’s correctional crisis.

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APPENDIX K— IMPLEMENTATION TIMELINE

Appendix K—Implementation Timeline
In this section of the report we provide a two-year schedule for implementing the Panel’s
major recommendations. As we mentioned at the beginning of this report, correctional
change doesn’t happen overnight and California’s leaders will need to take deliberate steps
to ensure that they provide the CDCR with the sufficient support it needs to effectively
move in this direction—this includes necessary legislation, required funding, and most of
all, adequate time. We note that although we present a two-year implementation timeline,
we do not expect that California will begin to realize the benefits of those changes within
that short time frame. Those who have studied what it takes to successfully reform public
institutions say that of the three things necessary for success: resources, commitment,
and time, time is the most important. Frederick Hess (1999), who has written books on
educational reform, says it takes a minimum of five years to accomplish observable reform
and RAND (2006) puts the time at eight years.
Our implementation plan identifies six major tasks that can be accomplished in two
years. Within each major task, we list a series of sub-tasks. Each sub-task includes the
agency(s) or entity(s) that will be primarily responsible for completing the task, as well as a
recommended completion time frame.
Implementing the recommendations of this report will require the full commitment not
only of the CDCR, but also the Governor’s Office, and the Legislature. In particular, the
Governor’s Office and Legislature must quickly develop and pass new legislation over
the next few months that will create meaningful incentives for prisoners and parolees to
participate in and complete rehabilitative programs. As we have already stated, if offenders
don’t have access to rehabilitation programs or incentives for completing them, then
California cannot expect to reduce its recidivism rates. Therefore, the top legislative priority
should be to pass the laws needed to remove these two external barriers.
We believe that this implementation plan provides a pragmatic strategy for implementing
our recommendations and will allow the CDCR to integrate sound rehabilitation based
policies, practices, and programs into the fabric of its operations, both in prison and in the
community.

Major Task 1: Adopt Expert Panel Plan and Recommendations

(July 2007 – October 2007)
This major task group is designed to lay the basic foundation for California to begin
transforming the CDCR. In this task group, the CDCR needs to conduct a number of
briefings with state and local agencies and stakeholder organizations, whose cooperation
and commitment are essential for the recommendations to succeed. In these briefings, the
CDCR and available Panel members need to present the findings of the Panel, as well as
the recommendations. Subsequent to these briefings, the Legislature and Governor’s office
need to reach an agreement to adopt the Roadmap and begin the process of ensuring that
offenders have access to and incentives for completing rehabilitation programming.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Major Task 2: Craft and Pass Legislation and Change Policies to Create
Access to and Incentives for Program Participation

(October 2007 – June 2009)
This group of task presumes that the Governor’s Office, Legislature, and CDCR Secretary
have agreed to implement the Panel’s recommendations. In this group of tasks the
Governor’s Office and Legislature will be crafting and passing the necessary legislation
to create access to and incentives for rehabilitation program participation. At the same
time, the CDCR will be drafting policy changes to implement graduated parole sanctions.
Once the new legislation and policies are adopted and codified, the CDCR would begin
applying these new measures to its adult offenders who qualify. As part of the legislative
process, lawmakers will have to determine whether or not they will apply these new laws
retroactively, and if so, to what extent.

Major Task 3: Develop or Adopt and Implement Risk to Reoffend
Assessment Instrument

(October 2007 – June 2009)
In this major task group, the CDCR will either develop or adopt a risk to reoffend
assessment instrument to use with its adult offenders. The CDCR has sufficient data in its
current information systems to quickly adopt and begin using a relatively straightforward
risk to reoffend assessment instrument. Coupled with activities in Major Task 4, these steps
serve as the foundation for matching the right offender to the right program.

Major Task 4: Select and Implement Offender Needs Assessment
Instrument

(July 2007 – June 2009)
Because the CDCR is currently using the COMPAS with its parole population and plans to
begin piloting the COMPAS with its prison population in June 2007, this major task group
can begin immediately. The CDCR needs to make a quick decision on whether it plans to
rely exclusively on the COMPAS or try another instrument. In either case, the CDCR must
begin assessing all appropriate prisoners and parolees using the selected needs assessment
instruments. Also included in this task group is validation of the COMPAS instrument that is
currently being used in the CDCR Parole Division.

Task 5: Begin Assigning Offenders to Appropriate Services Based on Risk
and Needs

(September 2007 – June 2009)
In this group of tasks, the CDCR will begin assigning prisoners and parolees to rehabilitation
programs and services based on their risk to reoffend levels and needs assessment results.
Concurrent with assessment-based assignment, the CDCR will also need to evaluate its
rehabilitation programs and terminate those that don’t meet the criterion for evidencebased programming and expand and add those that do. We recommend a common program
curriculum that can be consistently offered system-wide.

Major Task 6: Pilot New Programs

(February 2008 – June 2009)
In this final group of tasks, the CDCR will develop new programs as their assessment
instruments indicate. These new programs must be based on “what works” or “promising”
research. It will also be essential that an experimental design with random assignment be
part of the pilots for these programs.

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APPENDIX K— IMPLEMENTATION TIMELINE

Appendix K—Implementation Timeline
Tasks

Responsibility
J

2007
A S O N D J

F M

Time Line
2008
A M J J A S O N D J

Major Task 1: Adopt EP Plan and Recommendations
1.1 Brief Governor, Key Legislators, CDCR Senior Managers, Labor Unions, Federal Courts, Appropriate Boards,
EP/CDCR
X X
Panels, and Commissions, and Media on report recommendations.
1.2 Brief Key County and Local Governments and Community Groups on report recommendations.
EP/CDCR
X X
1.3 Refine implementation plan based on feedback received in briefings.
CDCR/EP
X X
1.4 Governor’s Office and Legislature reach agreement to adopt and implement legislative recommendations in
LEG,GOV
X X
report: access (overcrowding) and incentives (earned credits).
1.5 CDCR Secretary agrees to adopt and implement non-legislative recommendations in report.
CDCR
X X
1.6 Determine budget and secure funding pool to support report recommendations.
GOV/LEG/CDCR
X
Major Task 2: Craft and Pass Legislation and Change Policies to Create Access to and Incentives for Program Participation
2.1 Draft graduated parole sanctions guidelines policy.
CDCR/EP
X X X
2.2 Draft and pass legislation for earned program credit and good time credit incentives.
LEG/GOV/CDCR/EP
X X X X
2.3 Apply new graduated parole sanctions.
CDCR
X X X X X
2.4 Apply no supervision policy to low risk parolees.
CDCR
X X X X X X
2.5 Apply new earned program credits to offenders who successfully complete rehabilitation programs.
CDCR
X X X X X X
2.6 Apply new good time credit incentives to offenders who positively manage their behaviors.
CDCR
X X X X X X
2.7 Apply early parole termination for low risk parolees.
CDCR
2.8 Measure recidivism rates.
CDCR/EP
Major Task 3: Develop or Adopt and Implement Recidivism Risk Assessment Instrument
3.1 Develop recidivism risk instrument.
CDCR/EP
X X X
3.2 Develop criteria for applying risk results to offenders to determine program placement.
CDCR/EP
X X X X X
3.3 Train CDCR staff at prison reception centers.
CDCR
X X X X X
3.4 Apply risk assessment to selected new admissions.
CDCR
X X X X X
3.5 Apply risk assessment to existing prison population.
CDCR
X X X X X
3.6 Evaluate and monitor and risk assessment data.
CDCR/EP
X X
3. Validate COMPAS.
CDCR
X X X X X X X X X
Major Task 4: Select and Implement Offender Needs Assessment Instruments
4.1 Review COMPAS and other needs assessment tools.
CDCR/EP
X X X
4.2 Select appropriate needs assessment tools.
CDCR/EP
X X X
4.3 Pilot needs assessment instruments as needed.
CDCR.
X X X X X
4.4 Implement needs assessments on selected prison and parole admissions.
CDCR
X X X X
4.5 Evaluate and monitor needs assessment data and program outcomes.
CDCR/EP
X X X X
Major Task 5: Begin Assigning Offenders to Appropriate Services Based on Risk And Needs
5.1 Develop certification standards for existing programs.
CDCR/EP
X X X
5.2 Identify existing certified treatment services-programs.
CDCR
X X X X X X
5.3 Develop procedures for assigning offenders to program services based on risk and needs assessment.
CDCR/EP
X X X
5.4 Terminate ineffective programs.
CDCR
X X X X X X
5.5Assign offenders to rehabilitation programs based on risk and needs assessment data.
CDCR
X
5.6 Expand effective prison programs as needed.
CDCR
5.7 Expand effective parole programs as needed.
CDCR
5.8 Conduct process and outcome evaluations of expanded programs.
CDCR/EP
Major Task 6: Pilot New Programs
6.1 Develop new programs.
CDCR/EP
X X X X X
6.2 Develop evaluation criteria.
CDCR//EP
X X X
6.3 Issue RFPs as needed.
CDCR/EP
6.4 Select two new prison and two new community programs to pilot.
CDCR/EP
6.5 Fund service providers.
CDCR
6.6 Implement new programs.
CDCR
6.7 Conduct evaluations.
CDCR/EP
Legend: EP—Expert Panel; CDCR—California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation; LEG—Legislature; GOV—Governor’s Office

125

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

F

X
X
X
X
X
X

2009
M A M J

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X

X X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X X
X

X X X X X X X X X X X X
X X X X X X X X X X X X

X X X X X X X
X X X X
X X X X
X

X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X

X
X
X
X

X
X X
X X
X X

X
X
X X
X X X
X X X
X X X X X X X
X X X X X

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

126

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables

Appendix L—Detailed CDCR Adult Offender Profile
Information and Tables
CDCR Adult Offender Distribution
The CDCR is currently responsible for providing services to 321,222 adult offenders
in its prison and parole systems. As Figure 2.1 shows, 172,385 (54%) are located
in the CDCR prisons, 123,781 (39%) are on parole supervision, and 23,236 (7%)
are in other populations, including non-CDCR facilities or programs (i.e., Federal
prison or County jail).
Figure L-1: California’s Adult Offender Population

Source: CDCR (Weekly Population Report, April 23, 2007)

CDCR Adult Offender Cohorts
Although Figure L-1 suggests that there is really only one adult offender population that
is distributed into three large categories, that isn’t exactly the case. When considering the
overall CDCR adult offender population, there are actually four ways to look at it:
1.	
2.	
3.	
4.	

those
those
those
those

admitted to prison (an “Admissions Cohort”),
in prison (an “In-Prison Cohort”),
on parole (an “On Parole Cohort”), and
released to parole (an “Exit Cohort”).

This is important because, as we will discuss later, one of the first questions that needs to
be answered when discussing effective offender programming is: What are the offender’s
needs? The answer to that question provides the basis for the “rehabilitation” of the
offender. Thus, if the offender population was truly monolithic as Figure L-1 suggests, it
would be easy to describe the average needs of the adult offenders in the CDCR. However,
the answer is not that simple, because each of the four cohorts listed above has different
risks and needs profiles. For example, on average, people committed to prison for violent
crimes serve longer prison terms than those committed for nonviolent or drug crimes.
Because it takes longer for violent offenders to be released from prison, their representation
in an Exit Cohort is lower than that of nonviolent or drug offenders.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

While this distinction may on the surface appear to be self-evident and, therefore, trivial to
discuss, the fact of the matter is that the differences between In-Prison and Exit Cohorts
accounts for some of the greatest discrepancies in the figures cited by those who argue that
offenders are not a particularly dangerous or serious group (they tend to use Admissions or
Exit Cohorts) and those who argue that the majority of offenders are dangerous and serious
career criminals (they tend to use In-Prison Cohorts).an
From a programming standpoint, the answer of “Which parole or prison population is being
considered?” has important implications. If the public perceives released offenders as
people who have many needs, yet pose little risk to public safety, they are more likely to be
sympathetic to their circumstances and urge their lawmakers to invest in rehabilitation and
work programs. But if the public believes that most released offenders are dangerous and
serious career criminals who present a great risk to public safety, they are more likely to
urge their lawmakers to invest resources in law enforcement and surveillance activities.
Given its importance for programming considerations, we felt it was important to provide
a snapshot of all four of the CDCR’s adult offender cohorts. We have presented this data
in Figures L-2 – L-9. Please note: the data used for these tables came from 2006 CDCR
offender records, while the data at the beginning of this chapter came from April 2007 CDCR
offender records. As the CDCR population is continuing to grow, there is a slight discrepancy
when comparing the total numbers between the two data sources.
Figure L-2: CDCR Adult Offender Cohorts

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006
In-Prison and On Parole Data)

Figure L-2 provides a comparison of the number of offenders in each of the cohorts.

an	

See Tonry (1995) for a full discussion.
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APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables

Admissions Type
The first aspect of the adult offender population that we examined was admissions type.
In California, there are two ways to enter the CDCR adult prison system. The first way is
through a criminal court conviction. In this category are either Offenders with New Court
Convictions or Parolees with New Court Convictions (parolees convicted of new crimes).
The second way is through a technical parole violation. In this category are Parolees with
Technical Violations (parolees who have violated one or more of their parole conditions).
Figure L-3 displays our findings.
Figure L-3: Admissions Type Distribution

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006 In-Prison and On Parole Data)

As Figure L-3 shows, 149,294 offenders (86.8%) in the In-Prison Cohort were admitted
to prison because of new court convictions (offenders with new court convictions plus
parolees with new court convictions). But only 71,915 offenders (50.7%) in the Admissions
Cohort and 69,250 offenders (51.6%) in the Exit Cohort were admitted to prison because
of new court convictions. This tells us two things. First, nearly 50% of the offenders in the
Admissions and Exit Cohorts were admitted to prison due to technical parole violations, not
because of new court convictions. Second, parolees with technical violations spend less time
in prison than offenders and parolees with new criminal convictions.
Data provided by CDCR shows that two-thirds of the offenders admitted to prison in 2006
were parole violators. The new court conviction group reflects only 36% of new prison
admissions, and even within this group a sizeable number (10%) are probation violators.
Put differently, nearly 70% of all 2006 prison admissions were people who failed
to satisfy their probation or parole obligations. Any improvement in these existing
failure rates would have a large impact on reducing the CDCR prisoner population.

129

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Figure L-4: Length of Stay Comparison

Source: CDCR 2006

Figure L-4 compares the average lengths of stay (LOS) of parole violators and offenders with
new court convictions. Parole violators’ LOS when returned to prison are an average of just
four months. (This large group churns quickly in and out of California prisons and occupies
20,000 beds on any given day.) On the other hand, the LOS for offenders released in 2006
as a result of a new court convictions was an average of 29.1 months.
These admission and release trends have important consequences for the design and
application of rehabilitation programs. Most credible treatment programs require at least 3-6
months of participation in what would be considered the initial phase of a well structured
program. It is also assumed that the initial phase of rehabilitation should be followed by
additional months (usually 3-9) in subsequent and often less intensive services.ao
From a programming standpoint, the first implication is that effective programming will have
to take into account the differing lengths of stay between offenders admitted due to new
court convictions and those admitted due to technical parole violations. Offenders admitted
due to new court convictions will have more time to participate in programming in prison
because their sentences are longer. The second implication is that because technical parole
violators spend less time in prison, the CDCR needs to pay close attention to the programs
this group will be receiving in the community.

ao	

For reviews, see Wilson, Gallagher, & MacKenzie (2000) and MacKenzie (2006).
130

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables

Offenses
The next aspect that we examined was type of current conviction or offense. For this
analysis, we used four different categories of offenses: (a) crimes against persons, (b)
property crimes, (c) drug crimes, and (d) other crimes, which we display in Figure L-5.ap
Figure L-5: Offense Distribution

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006 In-Prison and On Parole Data)

As Figure L-5 shows, there are significant differences between the cohorts when it comes to
offenses for which offenders have been convicted. For example, property crimes represent
the largest category for offenders in the Admissions and Exit Cohorts (33.6% and 34.8%,
respectively). But the largest category for offenders in the In-Prison Cohort was crimes
against persons (50.4%). And the largest category for offenders in the On Parole Cohort
was drug crimes (31.1%). Programmatically this suggests that once again offenders should
be provided with different types of programming based on what stage they are in the
correctional system. Figure L-6 illustrates this more clearly.

ap	
Crimes against persons primarily include homicide, robbery, assault, sex crimes, and
kidnapping. Property crimes primarily include burglary, theft, forgery, and vehicle theft. Drug crimes
include both sales and possession. Other crimes include escape, arson, driving under the influence,
weapon possession, and miscellaneous offenses.
131

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Figure L-6: Sex Offender Distribution

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006 In-Prison and On Parole Data)

Figure L-6 provides a closer examination of one specific type of offender; those who are
convicted of crimes against persons—sex offenders.aq This figure illustrates that while
sex offenders only represent 7.4% of the Admissions Cohort, they make up 13% of the
In-Prison Cohort. This indicates that sex offenders receive longer sentences than their
average non-sex offender counterparts. Research by Becker and Murphy (1998) and Polizzi,
MacKenzie, and Hickman (1999) shows that sex offenders have different programming
needs than their non-sex offending counterparts. Figure L-6 also suggests that sex offenders
will generally have more time to complete treatment programming.

aq	
For this analysis, sex offenders are prisoners who must register as sex offenders under
California Penal Code (CPC) section 290. For details regarding CPC 290, see http://www.meganslaw.
ca.gov/registration/law.htm. It is also true that there is no such thing as a “typical” sex offender and
their characteristics and treatment needs are highly variable. California recently established the High
Risk Sex Offender Task Force to examine current practices and needs, and a series of reports details
their findings at http://www.cya.ca.gov/Communications/SexOffenderMgmt.html.
132

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables
Figure L-7: Serious or Violent Offense Distribution

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006 In-Prison and On Parole Data)

Another aspect of offenses that we wanted to examine was the nature of the offense—either
serious or violent. Serious offenses are defined by California Penal Code (CPC) sections
1192.7(c) and 1192.8 and include first degree burglary, arson, and furnishing drugs to a
minor. Violent offenses are defined by CPC section 667.5 (c) and include murder, rape, and
kidnapping. Figure L-7 displays this data. The most noticeable item that this data shows is
that most offenders were not convicted of either violent or serious crimes. This should speak
to the mixture of programs provided by the CDCR to its offender populations. The next most
noticeable item is that 41.4% of offenders in the In-Prison Cohort were convicted of violent
crimes, compared to 10.0%, 12.0%, and 8.2% for the Admissions, On Parole, and Exit
cohorts, respectively.

Gender, Race, Ethnicity, and Age
In Part I of the report, we discussed the responsivity principle. Basically, responsivity means
that effective rehabilitation programs take into consideration the differences in offender
gender, race, culture, age, and other factors and deliver information in ways that best
respond to those differences. We provide Figures L-8 – L-10 to give the reader snapshots of
the differences in gender, race, and age in the four different offender cohorts.

133

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Figure L-8: Gender Distribution

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006 In-Prison and On Parole Data)

Figure L-8 shows that female offenders comprise 10% of the Admissions Cohort, 11.3% of
the On Parole Cohort, and 10.2% of the Exit Cohort. However, female offenders represent
only 6.8% of the In-Prison Cohort. This suggests that female offenders, on average, spend
less time in prison than their male counterparts. Studies of female offenders in California
prisons show that they are more likely than male offenders to be incarcerated for drugrelated or less serious, nonviolent property crimes. Imprisoned females tend to have
fragmented families, other family members involved with the criminal justice system,
significant substance abuse issues, and multiple physical and mental health problems.ar
Typically, females receive relatively short prison sentences and they are soon released into
their communities having received few services to address their pathways to crime and
even fewer transitional services, setting them up for failure. This means that in addition
to providing them with gender-responsive programming in prison, the CDCR will need to
ensure that female offenders receive adequate gender-responsive programming in the
community.

ar	

Little Hoover Commission (2004), Bloom et. al., and Wolf (2006).
134

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables
Figure L-9: Race and Ethnicity Distribution

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006 In-Prison and On Parole Data)

Figure L-9 shows that Hispanic offenders comprise the largest group of offenders in all four
cohorts. This means that the CDCR will have to ensure that it considers not only cultural
responsivity issues when developing its programming, but it will also need to ensure that its
program deliverers and providers are fluent in the Spanish language, as well as preparing
program materials in Spanish.
Figure L-10: Age Distribution

Source: CDCR (2006 Admissions and Exit Data, December 31, 2006 In-Prison and On Parole Data)

Figure L-10 shows that there is very little difference in the average ages of offenders in
all four cohorts, although offenders in the In-Prison and On Parole Cohorts are somewhat
older than those in the Admissions Cohort. The main programming implication that this data
suggests is that the CDCR should ensure that its programming is responsive to offenders in
this life stage of their development.
135

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

CDCR Offender Programming Needs
Needs and Participation Levels—In Prison
Even though the CDCR doesn’t currently use an objective instrument to assess the
criminogenic needs of its adult offender prison population, external research by Petersilia
(2006) has indicated that California’s offenders have serious educational, vocational and
substance abuse-related deficits which contribute to their propensity to return to prison.
Yet despite this information, Petersilia (2006) reported that more than half of California’s
offenders in prison reported in that they had not participated in any rehabilitation
programming during their current prison term, compared to 31% nationally.as
To evaluate prisoner needs and design effective programming, the CDCR began piloting the
COMPAS instrument in 4 of its 13 Prison Reception Centers in June of 2007. The COMPAS
is an objective instrument that assesses an offender’s risks to reoffend and criminogenic
needs.

Needs and Participation Levels—On Parole
The CDCR’s Parole Division began using the COMPAS instrument in February 2005. This
represented an advance for California corrections. It was a necessary first step towards
matching available parole programs to offenders who can most likely benefit from them. It
also allows the Parole Division to assign parolees to differential case loads (e.g., minimum,
intensive) based on their statistical risks of reoffending.
The Panel used the COMPAS data that currently exists to assess the needs of parolees in the
Exit Cohort. For this report, we analyzed COMPAS data from a sample of parolees released
from California prisons between March 2006 and July 2006. The COMPAS data described in
the following figures (Figures L-11 – L-18) represent the characteristics of offenders who
had been sentenced in court for criminal offenses. Because of certain biases in the data,
statistics in these figures are likely to underestimate the actual degree of need in the CDCR
parole release population. They should be interpreted as “lowball” estimates of the needs of
those released to parole in California.

as	
It should be noted that the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) data on which Petersilia based
her analysis was derived from offender self-reports and is now almost ten years old, which makes the
need for an objective needs assessment instrument even more vital.
136

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables

This sample consisted of 11,140 parolees, representing about 31% of the offenders being
released from prison and assigned to parole between March and July 2006. The COMPAS
data available for analysis by the Expert Panel were biased in ways that likely result in an
underestimation of California parolee needs. Specifically, COMPAS was administered only
to prisoners being released from an original sentence and parole violators with a new term
(PVWNTs; e.g., those sentenced in court) who had served longer than six months in an
institution. COMPAS was not administered to those being released from CDCR camps, reentry centers, hospitals, and other non-institutional settings; offenders with Correctional
Clinical Case Management System-Enhanced Outpatient Program (CCCMS-EOP) status;
offenders targeted by the state’s Substance Abuse Program (SAP); and offenders pending
deportation. In addition, our analysis excluded all parole violators returned to custody
(PVRTCs; e.g., those sentenced by the Parole Board), since the Parole Division did not
include them in this first round of COMPAS assessments. As excluded offenders with
CCCMS-EOP status, those targeted by the SAP program, and PVRTCs are believed to have
more serious employment, mental health, and substance abuse needs than average, those
included in the analysis are probably less likely to have employment, mental health, and
substance abuse problems than those who have been excluded. Thus, all COMPAS-related
statistics reported in this chapter are likely to understate the actual degree of need in CDCR
parole exit cohorts.
Figure L-11: Educational Needs of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)

137

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Figure L-12: Vocational and Financial Needs of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)
Figure L-13: Substance Abuse Needs—Offenses of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)

138

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables
Figure L-14: Substance Abuse Needs and Treatment of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)

As Figures L-11 – L-14 indicate, California’s offenders releasing to parole have high
needs for education, vocational, and substance abuse treatment programming. It
is also important to recall that given sampling biases, these needs profiled here
probably underestimate the needs of the overall parole offender population (see
pages 111 for details). The fact that California’s offenders on parole have such high
programming needs comes as no surprise to anyone familiar with California or U.S.
offender populations. What is perhaps most surprising is the low level of offender
participation in rehabilitation programs. For example, just 14% of offenders in this
COMPAS sample reported currently being in a formal alcohol or drug treatment
program (Figure L-14). We will revisit the issue of current program participation in
Appendix M of this report.
Figure L-15: Prior Aggression, Family Violence, and Weapon Offenses of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)
139

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Figure L-16: Self and Others’ Perceptions and Violent Tendencies of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)
Figure L-17: Relationships with Peers, Gang Involvement of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)

140

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables
Figure L-18: Criminal Thinking Needs of the 2006 COMPAS Sample

Source: CDCR (2006 COMPAS Data)

In terms of offender programming needs, in Figures L-14 – L-18, we see that
roughly 20%-30% of parolees report having issues related to anger management
or temper control. Large percentages have criminal records that reflect these
problems; almost 40% have prior arrests or convictions for assault (other than
homicide or manslaughter); more than 25% have prior family violence arrests or
convictions. Peers are often involved in gangs and criminal activities. Almost 33%
report that half or more of their friends have been arrested; almost 15% report that
half or more of their friends are gang members. Our data does not provide us with
measures of criminal thinking, however, we do note that fairly large percentages
of offenders are self-focused—almost 50% feel they need to put themselves first,
and almost 30% feel they get into trouble because they do things without thinking.
Some perceive crimes as justified or not having injured their victims. About 30%
feel that minor crimes don’t hurt others; but fewer than 10% feel as strongly about
justifying stealing. Only one item on the COMPAS addresses sex offending; 6.1% of
offenders indicate a prior sex offense arrest or conviction.

141

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table L-1: CDCR Gender and Race Distribution
Attribute

Admissions Cohort

In-Prison Cohort

On Parole Cohort

Exit Cohort

N=141,881

%

N=172,066

N=121,156

%

N=134,148

%

%

Gender
Female

14,246

10.04%

11,710

6.81%

13,639

11.26%

13,668

10.19%

127,635

89.96%

160,356

93.19%

107,517

88.74%

120,480

89.81%

Black

38,534

27.16%

49,521

28.78%

29,033

23.96%

36,057

26.88%

Hispanic/Mexican

50,873

35.86%

65,141

37.86%

48,424

39.97%

47,535

35.43%

White

46,124

32.51%

47,410

27.55%

37,576

31.01%

44,650

33.28%

Other

6,350

4.48%

9,994

5.81%

6,123

5.05%

5,906

4.40%

Male
Race

Source: CDCR 2006

Table L-2: CDCR Age Distribution
Attribute
19 – under

Admissions Cohort

In-Prison Cohort

On Parole Cohort

Exit Cohort

N=141,881

N=172,066

N=121,156

%

N=134,148

%

%

%

1,950

1.37%

1,037

0.60%

114

0.09%

345

0.26%

20 – 24

20,693

14.58%

19,873

11.55%

11,390

9.40%

16,466

12.27%

25 – 29

27,384

19.30%

30,608

17.79%

23,666

19.53%

26,131

19.48%

30 – 34

21,243

14.97%

26,801

15.58%

20,060

16.56%

20,938

15.61%

35 – 39

22,065

15.55%

26,018

15.12%

19,520

16.11%

21,864

16.30%

40 – 44

20,700

14.59%

25,167

14.63%

18,398

15.19%

20,451

15.25%

45 – 49

15,402

10.86%

20,537

11.94%

14,354

11.85%

15,363

11.45%

50 – 54

7,811

5.51%

11,734

6.82%

8,090

6.68%

7,842

5.85%

55 – 59

3,089

2.18%

5,766

3.35%

3,416

2.82%

3,141

2.34%

60 – 64

1,006

0.71%

2,552

1.48%

1,326

1.09%

1,054

0.79%

65 – 69

368

0.26%

1,140

0.66%

500

0.41%

373

0.28%

70 – up

170

0.12%

833

0.48%

322

0.27%

180

0.13%

Source: CDCR 2006

142

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables
Table L-3: CDCR Offenses Distribution
Attribute

Admissions Cohort

In-Prison Cohort

On Parole Cohort

Exit Cohort

N=141,881

%

N=172,066

%

N=121,156

%

N=134,148

%

Person

33,318

23.48%

86,689

50.38%

31,413

25.93%

29,184

21.76%

Property

47,708

33.63%

36,222

21.05%

37,352

30.83%

46,650

34.78%

Drug

44,488

31.36%

35,711

20.75%

37,730

31.14%

43,362

32.32%

Other

16,043

11.31%

13,350

7.76%

14,564

12.02%

14,773

11.01%

124,267

87.59%

125,899

73.17%

106,198

87.65%

117,780

87.80%

17,280

12.18%

37,332

21.70%

14,939

12.33%

16,345

12.18%

334

0.24%

8,835

5.13%

19

0.02%

23

0.02%

10,520

7.41%

22,438

13.04%

9,302

7.68%

9,399

7.01%

1,138

0.80%

25,367

14.74%

254

0.21%

77

0.06%

Offense Category

2-3 Strike Provision
None
Two
Three

Sex Offender Registration
Yes
Lifer
Yes

Type of Admission/Release
New Court
Commitments

50,708

35.74%

108,702

63.17%

62,602

51.67%

48,407

36.08%

Probation violators

14,532

10.24%

10,541

6.13%

16,710

13.79%

14,575

10.86%

21,207

14.95%

40,592

23.59%

20,163

16.64%

20,843

15.54%

4,505

3.18%

1,879

1.09%

33,298

27.48%

55,481

41.36%

5,093

4.20%

9,417

7.02%

Parole Violators – Total
New court
Technical violators
Technical violatorsContinue on Parole
Pending Parole
Revocation Hearing

N/A
65,461

46.14%

20,893

Source: CDCR 2006

143

12.14%

N/A

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table L-4: Serious and Violent Crime Distribution
Attribute

Admissions
Cohort

In-Prison Cohort

N=141,881

On Parole Cohort

Exit Cohort

%

N=172,066

%

N=121,156

%

N=134,148

%

236

0.07%

0

0.00%

151

0.11%

126

0.10%

111,816

78.81%

82,037

47.68%

108,233

80.68%

91,952

75.90%

Serious

15,703

11.07%

18,746

10.89%

14,813

11.04%

14,519

11.98%

Violent

14,126

9.96%

71,283

41.43%

10,951

8.16%

14,559

12.02%

Current Serious or Violent Crime
Missing
No

Current and Prior Serious or Violent Crime Type
No Current or Prior
Violent-Serious

89,973

63.41%

56,643

32.92%

76,241

62.93%

87,242

65.03%

No Current, Prior
Violent, No Prior
Serious

9,007

6.35%

10,905

6.34%

6,906

5.70%

8,462

6.31%

No Current, Prior
Serious, No Prior
Violent

12,574

8.86%

13,209

7.68%

9,111

7.52%

12,138

9.05%

No Current, Prior
Violent and Serious

3,203

2.26%

5,179

3.01%

2,320

1.91%

3,091

2.30%

Current Violent, No
Prior Violent-Serious

11,517

8.12%

55,957

32.52%

12,407

10.24%

8,932

6.66%

Current Violent, Prior
Violent, No Prior
Serious

849

0.60%

6,232

3.62%

715

0.59%

646

0.48%

Current Violent, No
Prior Violent, Prior
Serious

779

0.55%

4,212

2.45%

525

0.43%

522

0.39%

Current Violent and
Prior Violent-Serious

281

0.20%

2,637

1.53%

229

0.19%

215

0.16%

Current Serious, No
Prior Violent-Serious

10,983

7.74%

10,619

6.17%

10,593

8.74%

10,462

7.80%

Current Serious,
Prior Violent, No Prior
Serious

1,658

1.17%

3,665

2.13%

1,218

1.01%

1,466

1.09%

Current Serious, No
Prior Violent, Prior
Serious

728

0.51%

1,664

0.97%

651

0.54%

692

0.52%

Current Serious and
Prior Violent-Serious

329

0.23%

1,144

0.66%

240

0.20%

280

0.21%

Source: CDCR 2006

144

APPENDIX L— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER PROFILE INFORMATION and tables
Table L-5: Mental Health Code Distribution
Attribute

Admissions Cohort

In-Prison Cohort

N=141,881

%

N=172,066

%

115,312

81.27%

126,435

73.48%

23,899

16.84%

40,636

Crisis Bed

237

0.17%

DMH

161

EOP

2,272

No Mental Health
Code
CCCMS

On Parole Cohort
N=121,156

%

Exit Cohort
N=134,148

%

107,636

80.24%

23.62%

23,735

17.69%

253

0.15%

162

0.12%

0.11%

480

480

480

0.13%

1.60%

4,262

2.48%

2,447

1.82%

Data not reliable

Source: CDCR 2006

Legend: CCMS-Correctional Clinical Case Management System; DMH-Department of Mental Health,
EOP-Enhanced Outpatient Program
Table L-6: First Admission Due to Probation Failure Distribution
Attribute

Admissions Cohort
N=141,881

%

In-Prison Cohort
N=172,066

On Parole Cohort

Exit Cohort

%

N=121,156

%

N=134,148

%

First Admission Due to Failure on Probation
No

106,446

75.02%

154,806

89.97%

92,411

76.27%

99,736

74.35%

Yes: Total

35,435

24.98%

17,260

10.03%

28,745

0.24%

34,412

25.65%

Yes: First admission
due to failing
probation; prior
admission

20,903

14.73%

6,719

3.90%

12,035

9.93%

19,837

14.79%

Yes: First admission
due to failing
probation; current
admission

14,532

10.24%

10,541

6.13%

16,710

13.79%

14,575

10.86%

Source: CDCR 2006

Table L-7: Good Time Group Distribution
Attribute
0% credit
½ credit
1/3 credit

Admissions Cohort

In-Prison Cohort

On Parole Cohort

Exit Cohort

N=141,881

%

N=172,066

%

N=121,156

%

N=134,148

%

2,771

1.95%

20,353

11.83%

1,819

1.50%

1,481

1.10%

111,612

78.67%

70,645

41.06%

93,406

77.10%

108,332

80.76%

33

0.02%

9,311

5.41%

152

0.13%

41

0.03%

156

0.81%

7,201

4.19%

644

0.53%

532

0.40%

15% credit

10,060

7.09%

35,964

20.90%

10,871

8.97%

7,962

5.94%

20% credit

15,773

11.12%

28,167

16.37%

13,947

11.51%

15,476

11.54%

476

0.34%

425

0.25%

317

0.26%

324

0.24%

15% credit (with
base term double)

Unknown
Source: CDCR

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

146

APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables

Appendix M—Detailed CDCR Adult Offender Programs and
Activities Tables
CDCR Adult Offender Programs and Activities
Title 15 of the CDCR Policy states that “every able-bodied person committed to the custody
of the Secretary of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation is obligated to work
as assigned by department staff and by personnel of other agencies to whom the inmate’s
custody and supervision may be delegated. Assignment may be to a full day of work,
education, or other program activity, or to a combination of work and education or other
program activity.” (Article 3, 3040 (a)). Assignments include Support Services for the
institution, Academic and Vocational Education programs, and Substance Abuse programs.
Offenders earn credit off their sentences (e.g., day for day) for participation in these
programs and activities; some can earn hourly pay for certain job assignments. Parolees
also participate in education, vocation and other programs, although they do not earn
credits for their participation.
For purposes of this report, we define a ”program” as a set of structured services designed
to achieve specific goals and objectives for specific individuals over a specific period of time.
Programs are typically targeted towards particular problems such as substance abuse or
criminal thinking. We consider “activities” to be synonymous with job assignments, such as
Support Services or Camps.

Prison Programs and Activities
Offenders can participate in one or more programs and-or activities during their time in
prison; they may also participate in half-time assignments. Approximately three-quarters
of offenders are eligible to participate on a given day. Approximately one-quarter are
ineligible to participate, primarily due to being in Prison Reception Centers or administrative
segregation units. Of those eligible to be assigned, three-quarters actually participate in
programs or other activities on a given day.
Table M-1 gives a one day snapshot of adult offenders who were participating in programs
and activities on March 10, 2007.at

at	
These include all felons and civil addicts on March 10, 2007; it does not exclude prisoners
ineligible for work.
147

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table M-1: Snapshot of CDCR Adult Offender In-Prison Cohort
Program and Activity Assignments, March 10, 2007

% Capacity3

% of All
Prisoners
Participating
(n=163,667)

Capacity1

Total
Assignment

Number of
Prisoners
Participating2

Support Services

48,935

45,138

45,100

92.2%

27.6%

Bridging Program

22,212

19,389

19,389

87.3%

11.8%

Academic Education

Activity-Program Type

13,422

12,105

12,045

90.2%

7.4%

Vocational Educational

9,987

9,845

9,052

98.6%

5.5%

Substance Abuse Treatment

8,601

7,621

7,491

88.6%

4.6%

Industries

6,428

6,011

6,011

93.5%

3.7%

Camp

5,048

4,677

4,677

92.7%

2.9%

Community Work Crews

455

306

306

67.3%

0.2%

Forestry Training

460

306

306

66.5%

0.2%

Reception Center Permanent
Work Crews

255

162

162

63.5%

0.1%

73

73

73

100.0%

0.0%

Joint Venture

Source: CDCR
1
Contains both full- and half-time job assignment positions; a prisoner may have two half-time job assignments
at any point in time.
2
A prisoner with more than one job assignment position per program type is counted only once.
3
Percent capacity is defined as the total number of assignments divided by capacity.

Table M-1 shows that the largest prisoner assignment category is Support Services. Within
this category, institutional cleaner, kitchen worker, and janitor are the most frequent job
assignments, accounting for a combined total of over 18,000 offenders out of the 45,100
offenders assigned overall to Support Services. Over 30,000 offenders were participating in
academic education or Bridging Program (in-cell study) programming. Over 9,000 inmates
were participating in vocational education (the largest category being office service and
related technology). Approximately 7,500 offenders were in substance abuse programs;
4,600 in fire camps; 6,000 in prison industries (sewing machine operator II was by far the
largest category, followed by laundry laborer and worker, and optician).
In Table M-1 we looked at the numbers of prisoners participating on one given day. In
Table M-2, we look at an Exit Cohort from 2006 and examine the numbers of prisoners who
participated in CDCR programs and activities at any point before their releases that year.

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APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables
Table M-2: CDCR Adult Offender Prison Exit Cohort Program and Activity Assignments, 2006
Number of
Prisoners
Participating1

% of Released
Prisoners
(n=134,148)

Support Services

50,019

37.3%

Bridging Program

27,791

20.7%

Academic Education

Activity-Program Type

24,505

18.3%

Substance Abuse Treatment

9,772

7.3%

Vocational Educational

8,736

6.5%

Industries

4,033

3.0%

Forestry Training

3,608

2.7%

Camp

3,589

2.7%

Community Work Crews

748

0.6%

Reception Center Permanent Work Crews

181

0.1%

40

0.0%

Joint Venture

Source: CDCR
1
A prisoner with more than one job assignment position per program type is counted
only once.

Table M-2 shows that Support Services was still the largest prisoner assignment category,
followed by Academic Education and the Bridging Program. Slightly more than one-third of
prisoners released in 2006 had been in a Support Services assignment. Approximately onefifth participated in Bridging or Academic Education programs.
Prisoners can have more than one assignment before they are released. Table L-3 shows the
distribution of the number of assignments for the 2006 releases. Nearly 50% of released
prisoners had no assignments during their prison terms. Another 21% had one assignment.
Just fewer than 30% had two or more assignments during their prison terms.
Table M-3: Number of Program or Job Assignments for 2006 releases
# of Assignments

% of Offenders

0

49.3

1

21.5

2

16.3

3

8.2

4

3.5

5+

1.1

Source: CDCR

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Participation in multiple assignments is highly dependent upon length of stay (LOS) during
the prisoner’s sentence. Figure L-1 shows the relationship between LOS and the jobs
assigned. For those offenders who served 6 months or less, almost 75% were not given any
job assignments. Roughly 65% of offenders who served 7 to 12 months had at least one
job assignment before their releases. Over 90% of offenders who have served more than 2
years had at least one job assignment.
Figure M-1: Job Assignment by Length of Stay (LOS)

Source: CDCR

Another way to examine program participation for released prisoners is by their status as
either new admissions or parole violators. Figure M-2 shows the distribution of the number
of job assignments by whether the offender was a new admission, a parole violator with
a new term, a parole violator returned to custody, or a prisoner released to continue on
parole. More than 70% of new admissions released in 2006 received job assignments; for
parole violators returned to custody, the opposite was true–almost 70% did not receive a
job assignment before they were released from prison.

Figure M-2: Job Assignment by Release Status

Source: CDCR
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APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables

Prison Program and Activity
Descriptions

training. If prisoners pass this training, they
are assigned to fire crews at conservation
camps and continue to receive safety and
other types of training for the duration of
their assignments.

Academic Education
The CDCR currently provides educational
programming throughout all of its prisons.
This includes three levels of Adult Basic
Education (ABE), High School, General
Education Development (GED), and English
as a Second Language (ESL). The curricula
emphasize reading, writing, computation,
and language development. The programs
provide offenders with opportunities for
further self-improvement through the
acquisition of life skills and career training.

Industries
The Prison Industry Authority (PIA) is
a prisoner work program that provides
productive job opportunities for prisoners.
PIA job assignments support prison safety,
help reduce violence, reimburse victims,
and produce quality products. PIA operates
over 60 different types of service at 22
prisons throughout California, providing
job assignments for approximately 6,000
prisoners.

Camp
With the assistance of the Department of
Forestry and the County of Los Angeles,
the CDCR operates close to 40 conservation
camps across California. Prisoners serving
in these camps act as “the backbone of the
State’s wild land firefighting crews” and
also perform community service projects.
The program acclimates prisoners to
working in fire camps and instructs them
how to function in the less restrictive camp
environment.

Joint Venture

Bridging Program
The Distance Education, Bridging Education
Program (BEP) is a life skills program
designed to provide offenders at Prison
Reception Centers with tools to prepare them
for a successful and positive experience
during their time in prison and also when
they are released to their communities.
Life skills taught in this program include
goal setting, communications, health and
fitness, effects of drug and alcohol, relapse
prevention strategies, coping, parenting, and
the development of a more positive selfimage.

Forestry Training

The Joint Venture Program provides
opportunities for prisoners to gain valuable
work experience and job skills training.
The program is a cooperative effort of
private industry and the State of California,
whereby private businesses can establish
operations inside California State prisons
and hire offenders as their workers. Under
the provisions of the program, which were
enacted with Proposition 139, known as
the Prison Inmate Labor Initiative of 1990,
prisoners are paid a comparable wage,
which is subject to deductions for Federal,
State, and local taxes; room and board;
crime victim compensation; family support;
and mandatory prisoner savings accounts.
In 2006, there were 3 employers and
approximately 75 prisoners participating in
the program.

Community Work Crews
Local communities utilize low institutional
risk-level prisoners as work crews for many
community projects and for maintaining
public property.

This program puts prisoners classified
as being suitable for the camp program
through rigorous fitness training. Once they
complete the fitness training, the California
Department of Forestry Fire Department
provides the offenders with fire fighting
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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Reception Center Work Crews
The work crews consist of general population
prisoners assigned to the Prison Reception
Centers job assignments.

Support Services
The CDCR offers Support Services to enable
the prison to operate more effectively
and efficiently and to offer offenders the
opportunity to get and keep jobs while on
parole or to learn skills through on-the-job
or vocational training. Assignments may
involve everything from important menial
tasks to operating clean, safe, and efficient
prisons. Examples of Support Services
positions are porter, food server, and yard
crew worker.

Substance Abuse Treatment Program
(SAP)
SAPs provide offenders with in-prison
services based on the Therapeutic
Community Model, which is designed to
create an extended exposure to a continuum
of services during incarceration, and
facilitate successful reentry into community
living. Examples of services include
substance abuse treatment and recovery;
social, cognitive, and behavioral counseling;
life skills training; health related education;
and relapse prevention. The CDCR currently
operates SAPs in 21 prisons with a total
capacity of 9,000 beds.

Vocational Education
The CDCR currently provides vocational
programs throughout all of its prisons. There
are a wide variety of vocational programs
offered, including—welding, auto body
repair, and carpentry.

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APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables

Prisoner Self-Help and Other Leisure Time Activities
In addition to program and activity assignments, prisoners may also participate in activities
that are generally known as self help programs, such as Alcoholic Anonymous (AA),
Narcotics Anonymous (NA), or other inmate leisure time activity groups (ILTAGs). Prisoners
do not earn credit for participation in these programs.
Because the CDCR does not record prisoner participation in these programs in the same
database as information for program and activity assignments, we were not able to obtain
detailed information on the characteristics of program participants. However, we were able
to abstract prisoner program participation information from Compstat reports for the 4th
Quarter of 2006, which we present in Table M-4.
Table M-4: CDCR Self-Help Group Activity Participation Summary, 4th Quarter 2006
Self-Help Group

Meetings

Alcoholics Anonymous
Total Number of Meetings

1,506

Narcotics Anonymous
Total Number of Meetings

1,246

Other (Veterans, Parenting, Etc.)
Total Number of Meetings

2,304

Source: CDCR

Table M-5: CDCR ILTAG Activity Participation Summary, 4th Quarter 2006
ILTAG (examples: Victim Offender Reconciliation Group,
Youth Diversion Group)

Meetings

Total Number of Meetings

1,294

Source: CDCR

Tables M-4 and M-5 show that relative to program and activity assignments, participation in
self-help groups and ILTAGs is small (less than 10%). What is in the reports but not shown
in the tables is that: (a) institutions vary both in terms of the number of meetings as well as
the type of meetings that are held, (b) AA and NA meetings are consistently held across all
institutions, and (c) the two most program-rich institutions appear to be San Quentin and
Valley State Prison for Women.
Since the COMPSTAT data used to generate Tables M-4 and M-5 did not provide a detailed
description of the kinds of programs that are offered as part of self-help groups and ILTAGs,
we looked at one specific institution, the California Men’s Colony in San Luis Obispo, to
obtain a representative sample of the kinds of programs in operation.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table M-6: Self-Help Groups and ILTAGs at California Men’s Colony
Program Name

Program Type

Number Services

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA)

12-step

200/week

Narcotics Anonymous (NA)

12-step

100/week

Prisoners Against Child Abuse

Fund raising for non-profit provider

40/week

Literacy Council

Provides literacy training to prisoners to
teach others to read

200 prisoners/week

Higher Ground

Youth diversion program that meets with
prisoners

12 prisoners

Vietnam Veterans Group

Veterans group that meet with other
veterans to assist with discharges and
benefits

20/month

Criminal and Gang Members Anonymous*

12-step

60 prisoners

Tokefellow*

Christian personal growth

180/week

Patten College*

College curriculum

100/week

Victim Impact Program*

Empathy development for victims

120 prisoners

Personal Growth Seminar*

Wide range of psychosocial issues in a
rehabilitative curricula

450 prisoners

Alternatives to Violence Project

Conflict management skills development

Not reported

Jewish Committee*

One-on-one counseling

40/month

A Felon’s Life Awareness, Seeing Hearing*

Prisoner team presentation

30/week

Source: CDCR
*Self-help group sponsored by staff or community volunteerism, which is sponsored by the Religious Department
at CMC.

Table M-6 shows the variety of self-help groups and ILTAGs operating at the CMC. Many of
these programs operated have by-laws and are supervised by a paid CMC Self-Help Sponsor.
These include AA, NA, Prisoners against Child Abuse, Literacy Council, Higher Ground, and
Vietnam Veterans Group. The others are sponsored by the Religious Department at CMC.
In addition to these groups, the Medical and Mental Health Services Departments provide
Smoking Cessation, Anger Management, and Stress Management programs.

Program Performance
Outcome or performance measures for prisoners participating in programs are scarce.
Available learning gain scores on the Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment System
(CASAS) for participants in the education program revealed an average gain from
Intermediate Basic to Advanced Basic levels for math. No learning gain was demonstrated in
the average reading level. (Note: These results should be interpreted with caution: post-test
results were not available for a large percentage of participants.) Automated information on
program completion for substance abuse programs was not available.
Although we did not have information on how successful vocational and prison industries
programs are in terms of learned skills or employment obtained post-release, we were able
to examine the types of training programs being offered. This information helps answer
these important questions: Is the type of job assignment being offered what is likely to be
needed in the workforce? Are offenders being trained In current or obsolete technologies?
Although we were not able to take a detailed look at the match between programs offered
and training provided, we were able to make a few general observations by examining
the projected job growth rates in different occupations. Table M-7 presents a table of
occupations and their projected job growth rates for the period 2004-2014. As you recall,
our earlier analysis revealed that the largest category for job assignments was Support
154

APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables

Services, with cleaners, kitchen workers, and janitors being the largest single categories.
The largest category for Vocational training was in office technology. And in Industries, a
large number of prisoners worked as sewing machine operators. Although these areas have
not been identified as categories with the highest expected job growth rates, they do appear
to reflect areas of projected job growth during the next decade.
Table M-7: Projected Job Growth 2004-2014 for Selected Occupations
Occupation

Projected. Job Growth:
2004-2014

Retail Salespeople

288,300

Cashiers

205,700

Waiters/Waitresses

158,400

Laborers and Freight, Stock, and Material Movers

143,400

General Office Clerks

134,200

Combined Food Preparers

130,700

Registered Nurses

109,100

Janitors and Cleaners

93,300

General and Operations Managers

85,900

Elementary School Teachers, Except Special Education

83,000

Customer Service Representatives

82,300

Teacher Assistants

76,200

Counter Attendants-Food Service-Coffee Shop

75,700

Carpenters

73,100

Landscapers

69,400

Sales Representatives

69,400

Executive Secretaries-Administrative Assistants

68,800

Farm Workers and Laborers, Crop Workers

68,500

Stock Clerks and Order Fillers

66,100

Receptionists, Information Clerks

62,800

Food Preparation Workers

61,900

Bookkeeping, Accounting, and Auditing Clerks

61,200

Security Guards

60,300

First-line Supervisors-Managers of Office-Administrative Support Workers

55,800

Secondary School Teachers, Except Special-Vocational Education

55,500

Accountants and Auditors

53,300

Truck Drivers, Heavy and Tractor Trailers

51,800

General Maintenance and Repair Workers

49,300

Maids and Housekeeping Cleaners

48,700

First Line Supervisors of Retail Salespeople

48,300

Source: Employment Development Department Labor Market Information Division, State of California, California
Occupational Projections 2004-2014, available at http://www.calmis.ca.gov/FILE/OCCPROJ/Cal$OccMost.xls.

155

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Parole Programs and Activities
Table M-8 presents program participation information for parolees. To document parole
program participation, we examined all 2005 releases to parole to allow sufficient time to
document program participation in the community. A parolee might appear in more than
one row if he or she participated in multiple programs.
Table M-8: CDCR Adult Offender Parole Exit Cohort Program and Activity Assignments, 2005

Program Type
Police and Corrections Team (PACT)

Releases1

% of all
releases
(n=113,839)

38,261

33.6%

Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery (STAR)

6,205

5.5%

Substance Abuse Services Coordinating Agencies (SASCA)

4,440

3.9%

Parolee Employment Program (PEP)

4,071

3.6%

Employment Development Department (EDD)

3,452

3.0%

Parolee Service Centers (PSC)

3,061

2.7%

Computerized Literacy Learning Centers (CLLC)

2,496

2.2%

Parole Services Network (PSN)

1,485

1.3%

1,386

1.2%

Residential Multi-Service Centers (RMSC)

943

0.8%

In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP)

181

0.2%

Bay Area Service Network (BASN)

2

Source: CDCR
1
If an inmate has more than one release in different offense categories, the most serious
category will be used.
2
Missing data during July 2006 through December 2006 due to discontinuation of case
management contract.

We noted that a third of all parolees (38,261) participated in the PACT program. We also
noticed that a large number of parolees (6,645) attended substance abuse programs, in
both the SASCA and STAR programs. Over 4,000 parolees attended PEP, almost 3,000
attended PSN and BASN, and a little less than 2,500 attended CLCC. Overall, 43.7% of
parolees participated in one or more of the programs listed in Table M-8, while 56.3% did
not participate in any of the programs.

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APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables

Parole Program and Activity
Descriptions

at the following facilities: Kern County Jail,
Tulare County Adult Pretrial Facility, Del
Norte County Jail, San Francisco County Jail,
and the Santa Clara County Jail.

Computerized Literacy Learning Center
(CLLC)

Police and Corrections Team (PACT)

The CLLC is a computer-assisted
instructional program designed to increase
the literacy skills of parolees, and thereby
improve parolee employability and success.
With the exception of those located at
Residential Multi-Service Centers, CLLCs
are located in the parole offices, thus
allowing for efficient referral and monitoring
of parolee progress by parole agents, and
making them more accessible for parolees.
The CLLC is currently operating 20 labs and
is available to 78 parole units statewide.

The PACT program creates partnerships
between local law enforcement agencies
and social services agencies. Mandatory
PACT orientation meetings provide recently
released parolees a “one-stop shopping”
atmosphere offering information about
available community resources and
reinforcing their responsibility to establish
community based treatment programming.
During the orientation meetings, parolees
are able to sign up for community programs.
PACT members serve as liaisons between
field parole staffs, local service agencies, and
contractors that provide substance abuse
treatment, transitional living, employment
services, subsistence resources (clothing,
meals and transportation), and educationalvocational training. The PACT program is
operating statewide.

Employment Development Department
(EDD)
The CDCR, through an Interagency
Agreement with the Employment
Development Department (EDD), provides
pre-employment services, job search
preparation, job placement, and job
retention assistance to active parolees
statewide. The CDCR-EDD Parolee Job
Program works to assist the parolee, using
weekly workshops and personal counseling
by EDD staff, known as Job Specialists, in
preparing for employment and securing
and retaining employment. Currently, there
are 30 EDD Job Specialists located in CDCR
parole units statewide.

Parolee Employment Program (PEP)

In-Custody Drug Treatment Program
(ICDTP)
ICDTP is a Valdivia sanctioned program that
is intended for parolees who have committed
violations as a result of drug or alcoholrelated dependency and/or have a need for a
period of confinement and treatment to get
their substance abuse issues under control.
Parolees housed in ICDTP facilities receive
education-based treatment programming,
followed by residential aftercare (offered
through Substance Abuse Services
Coordinating Agencies), and participation
in self-help activities under the supervision
of the Agent of Record. Currently, there are
a combined total of 264 jail beds located

The PEP is administered by communitybased contractors that provide employment
services to parolees at selected parole sites.
The goal of the PEP is to enable parolees to
be responsible, self-sufficient, tax-paying
members of the community. An individual
employment plan is developed for each
parolee and each parolee is required to
attend weekly job development workshops.
Supportive services are provided as related
to the parolee’s needs. The PEP program
is currently located in 9 parole complexes
(Fresno, Bakersfield, San Francisco,
Alameda, Santa Clara, Los Angeles,
Inglewood, Riverside, and San Diego).

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Parolee Service Center (PSC)

Residential Multi-Service Center (RMSC)

Utilizing former Halfway-Back facilities
(also known as the Community Correctional
Re-entry Centers—CCRCs) the PSCs
provide non-sanctioned voluntary services
to assist parolees in reintegrating into
their communities. These are communitybased residential programs focusing on
employment needs, substance abuse control,
stress management, victim awareness,
computer-assisted literacy education, life
skills training, and job search and placement
assistance. There are a total of 685 PSC
beds statewide.

RMSCs provide shelter, food, substance
abuse treatment, counseling, job readiness
training, and educational services to
homeless parolees. The aim of the centers
is to successfully transition parolees
to independent living without criminal
reoffending by providing a variety of inhouse services that combat the many
problems that increase the likelihood of
becoming and remaining homeless—lack
of education, poor employment skills, and
substance abuse. Parolees may stay in the
RMSC for 180 days, which can be extended
up to an additional 180 days at some
locations. There are currently 401 contracted
RMSC beds statewide.

Parole Services Network (PSN)
The Parolee Services Network is a
collaboration between the CDCR-Office
of Substance Abuse Programs, the State
Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs,
and County run alcohol and drug programs.
The PSN is a 180-day treatment program
through which providers offer treatment in
various modalities, to include detoxification
(the social model as opposed to in-hospital
medical model), residential treatment, Sober
Living Environments (SLE), and outpatient
services. The overall goal of the PSN is to
reduce alcohol and drug related abuse and
criminal activity of parolee participants,
thereby reducing revocation rates. Every
county that receives funding must have a
network of drug treatment service providers
that cover a wide range of treatment
modalities. The PSN program is located in
17 counties and has 620 residential beds
statewide.

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APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables
Table M-9: Snapshot of CDCR Adult Offender In-Prison Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, March 10, 2007—Age, Race, Gender Distribution
PROGRAM TYPE

AVERAGE
AGE

ETHNICITY/RACE

GENDER

Black

Hispanic

White

Other

Missing

Female

Male

Academic Education

37

28.1%

47.8%

17.2%

6.9%

0.1%

12.4%

87.5%

Camp

36

24.8%

29.7%

41.0%

4.5%

0.0%

7.2%

92.8%

Bridging Program

36

25.1%

38.1%

31.1%

5.7%

1.3%

7.5%

91.2%

Forestry Training

34

22.9%

36.6%

36.9%

3.6%

0.0%

21.9%

78.1%

Industries

42

34.4%

27.1%

31.2%

7.4%

0.1%

8.9%

91.0%

Joint Venture

42

47.9%

15.1%

30.1%

6.8%

0.0%

60.3%

39.7%

Community Work Crews

36

28.4%

34.3%

34.0%

3.3%

0.0%

2.9%

97.1%

Reception Center Permanent
Work Crews

42

48.8%

16.0%

23.5%

11.7%

0.0%

0.0%

100.0%

Support Services

39

30.6%

32.4%

29.4%

7.7%

0.1%

6.8%

93.1%

Substance Abuse Treatment

36

33.1%

29.7%

33.6%

3.6%

0.1%

22.1%

77.8%

Vocational Educational

37

27.6%

35.8%

29.3%

7.4%

0.1%

11.2%

88.7%

Source: CDCR n=163,667

Table M-10: Snapshot of CDCR Adult Offender In-Prison Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, March 10, 2007—Offense Distribution
PROGRAM TYPE

OFFENSE CATEGORY
Missing

Against Persons

Property

Drug

Other

Academic Education

0.1%

56.5%

16.7%

20.2%

6.5%

Camp

0.0%

24.3%

31.3%

36.7%

7.8%

Bridging Program

3.7%

19.1%

33.5%

32.8%

10.9%

Forestry Training

0.0%

23.5%

35.0%

35.3%

6.2%

Industries

0.1%

65.3%

14.2%

15.9%

4.5%

Joint Venture

0.0%

83.6%

11.0%

5.5%

0.0%

Community Work Crews

0.0%

20.3%

29.7%

39.2%

10.8%

Reception Center Permanent
Work Crews

0.0%

59.9%

16.0%

19.8%

4.3%

Support Services

0.1%

55.2%

18.4%

19.7%

6.5%

Substance Abuse Treatment

0.5%

23.4%

27.7%

39.4%

8.9%

Vocational Educational

0.1%

64.8%

14.4%

14.8%

5.8%

Source: CDCR n=163,667

159

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table M-11: Snapshot of CDCR Adult Offender In-Prison Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, March 10, 2007—Sex, Serious-Violent Distribution
SEX
REGISTRATION

PROGRAM TYPE
Academic Education

SERIOUS-VIOLENT OFFENSE
Neither

Serious

Violent

Missing

18.2%

43.7%

11.0%

45.2%

0.1%

Camp

0.0%

71.3%

10.9%

17.8%

0.0%

Bridging Program

7.2%

82.6%

10.7%

3.0%

3.7%

Forestry Training

0.3%

75.5%

10.5%

14.1%

0.0%

14.7%

31.3%

8.8%

59.8%

0.1%

Joint Venture

1.4%

13.7%

12.3%

74.0%

0.0%

Community Work
Crews

1.0%

77.8%

10.5%

11.8%

0.0%

Reception Center
Permanent Work
Crews

5.6%

35.2%

10.5%

54.3%

0.0%

Support Services

13.8%

43.4%

9.7%

46.8%

0.1%

Substance Abuse
Treatment

2.6%

77.1%

10.7%

11.7%

0.5%

18.2%

35.4%

9.2%

55.3%

0.1%

Industries

Vocational
Educational
Source: CDCR n=163,667

Table M-12: CDCR Adult Offender Prison Exit Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, 2006—Age, Race, Gender Distribution
PROGRAM TYPE

AVERAGE AGE

ETHNICITY/RACE

GENDER

Black

Hispanic

White

Other

Female

Male

Academic Education

36

27.6%

37.5%

30.1%

4.8%

16.8%

83.2%

Camp

35

23.8%

31.2%

41.0%

4.0%

7.0%

93.0%

Bridging Program

36

25.5%

37.7%

32.4%

4.4%

14.7%

85.3%

Forestry Training

34

23.8%

33.5%

38.4%

4.4%

8.0%

92.0%

Industries

38

30.6%

29.5%

34.8%

5.2%

12.2%

87.8%

Joint Venture

41

35.0%

12.5%

45.0%

7.5%

35.0%

65.0%

Community Work Crews

36

31.7%

25.5%

38.4%

4.4%

3.1%

96.9%

Reception Center
Permanent Work Crews

41

34.8%

28.2%

30.4%

6.6%

0.0%

100.0%

Support Services

36

26.6%

34.1%

34.3%

5.0%

12.6%

87.4%

Substance Abuse
Treatment

36

29.9%

31.5%

35.3%

3.3%

27.1%

72.9%

Vocational Educational

36

28.7%

34.1%

31.8%

5.5%

14.7%

85.3%

Source: CDCR 2006 n=134,148

									

160

APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables
Table M-13: CDCR Adult Offender Prison Exit Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, 2006—Offense Distribution
PROGRAM TYPE

OFFENSE CATEGORY
Missing

Against Persons

Property

Drug

Other

Academic Education

0.024%

29.7%

30.0%

30.3%

9.9%

Camp

0.028%

20.4%

32.1%

39.5%

8.1%

Bridging Program

0.014%

18.9%

35.9%

34.6%

10.7%

Forestry Training

0.028%

21.3%

32.7%

38.1%

7.9%

Industries

0.025%

34.2%

28.3%

29.3%

8.1%

Joint Venture

0.000%

57.5%

20.0%

17.5%

5.0%

Community Work Crews

0.000%

15.4%

37.0%

37.7%

9.9%

Reception Center Permanent
Work Crews

0.000%

32.0%

26.5%

33.1%

8.3%

Support Services

0.022%

24.6%

32.6%

32.2%

10.5%

Substance Abuse Treatment

0.000%

20.9%

31.4%

38.3%

9.4%

Vocational Educational

0.000%

42.1%

25.2%

25.2%

7.6%

Source: CDCR 2006 n=134,148

Table M-14: CDCR Adult Offender Prison Exit Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, 2006—Sex, Serious-Violent Distribution
PROGRAM TYPE

SEX REGISTRATION

SERIOUS-VIOLENT OFFENSE
Neither

Serious

Violent

Academic Education

8.3%

73.1%

11.6%

15.3%

Camp

0.2%

76.5%

11.5%

12.0%

Bridging Program

6.0%

85.6%

11.3%

3.1%

Forestry Training

0.2%

75.9%

11.5%

12.5%

Industries

8.1%

66.2%

11.9%

21.9%

Joint Venture

15.0%

32.5%

12.5%

55.0%

Community Work Crews

0.1%

82.8%

7.8%

9.5%

Reception Center Permanent Work
Crews

6.6%

70.7%

10.5%

18.8%

Support Services

6.7%

78.5%

10.5%

10.9%

Substance Abuse Treatment

3.3%

81.7%

10.4%

8.0%

12.9%

59.4%

12.7%

27.9%

Vocational Educational
Source: CDCR 2006 n=134,148

161

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
Table M-15: CDCR Adult Offender Parole Exit Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, 2005—Age, Race, Gender Distribution
AVERAGE
AGE

PROGRAM TYPE

ETHNICITY/RACE

GENDER

Black

Hispanic

White

Other

Female

Male

Bay Area Service Network (BASN)

38

40.8%

19.8%

34.2%

5.2%

11.8%

88.2%

Computerized Literacy Learning Centers
(CLLC)

35

36.6%

36.4%

24.0%

3.0%

15.4%

84.6%

Employment Development Department
(EDD)

34

24.6%

36.5%

32.9%

5.9%

14.1%

85.9%

In-Custody Drug Treatment Program
(ICDTP)

37

18.8%

28.2%

49.7%

3.3%

7.2%

92.8%

Police and Corrections Team (PACT)

35

27.4%

30.0%

37.4%

5.2%

12.1%

87.9%

Parolee Employment Program (PEP)

36

48.4%

24.9%

22.7%

4.1%

12.8%

87.2%

Parolee Service Centers (PSC)

38

41.6%

21.2%

33.4%

3.8%

9.0%

91.0%

Parole Services Network (PSN)

37

22.7%

32.6%

42.4%

2.3%

13.9%

86.1%

Residential Multi-Service Centers (RMSC)

38

46.4%

25.9%

25.9%

1.8%

11.5%

88.5%

Substance Abuse Services Coordinating
Agencies (SASCA)

38

28.6%

23.4%

45.0%

3.0%

15.1%

84.9%

Substance Abuse Treatment and
Recovery (STAR)

37

34.4%

30.4%

31.1%

4.0%

12.0%

88.0%

Source: CDCR 2005 n=125,961

Table M-16: CDCR Adult Offender Parole Exit Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, 2005—Offense Distribution
PROGRAM TYPE

OFFENSE CATEGORY
Missing

Against
Persons

Property

Drug

Other

Bay Area Service Network (BASN)

0.2%

21.9%

37.9%

30.8%

9.2%

Computerized Literacy Learning Centers (CLLC)

0.0%

25.7%

34.1%

30.0%

10.2%

Employment Development Department (EDD)

0.0%

28.2%

33.5%

27.9%

10.4%

In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP)

0.0%

8.8%

37.0%

42.5%

11.6%

Police and Corrections Team (PACT)

0.1%

23.4%

33.4%

31.8%

11.3%

Parolee Employment Program (PEP)

0.0%

27.0%

33.5%

29.3%

10.2%

Parolee Service Centers (PSC)

0.0%

17.4%

41.6%

33.1%

8.0%

Parole Services Network (PSN)

0.0%

18.5%

36.2%

36.2%

9.1%

Residential Multi-Service Centers (RMSC)

0.0%

16.6%

40.2%

36.7%

6.5%

Substance Abuse Services Coordinating Agencies
(SASCA)

0.1%

15.7%

34.6%

42.7%

6.9%

Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery
(STAR)

0.0%

20.4%

35.1%

33.7%

10.7%

Source: CDCR 2005 n=125,961

162

APPENDIX m— DETAILED CDCR ADULT OFFENDER programs and activities tables
Table M-17: CDCR Adult Offender Parole Exit Cohort Program
and Activity Assignments, 2005—Sex, Serious-Violent Distribution

PROGRAM TYPE

SEX
REGISTRATION

SERIOUS/VIOLENT OFFENSE
Neither

Serious

Violent

Missing

Bay Area Service Network (BASN)

3.5%

79.7%

11.5%

8.5%

0.2%

Computerized Literacy Learning Centers (CLLC)

9.8%

76.8%

11.4%

11.8%

0.0%

Employment Development Department (EDD)

9.2%

75.2%

12.1%

12.7%

0.0%

In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP)

0.0%

91.2%

8.8%

0.0%

0.0%

Police and Corrections Team (PACT)

6.0%

81.2%

10.0%

8.7%

0.1%

Parolee Employment Program (PEP)

8.6%

76.3%

10.5%

13.1%

0.0%

Parolee Service Centers (PSC)

0.5%

83.1%

10.4%

6.5%

0.0%

Parole Services Network (PSN)

3.7%

82.0%

11.0%

7.1%

0.0%

Residential Multi-Service Centers (RMSC)

0.4%

82.7%

11.0%

6.3%

0.0%

Substance Abuse Services Coordinating Agencies
(SASCA)

3.1%

85.9%

8.7%

5.3%

0.1%

Substance Abuse Treatment and Recovery
(STAR)

6.3%

81.9%

10.7%

7.4%

0.0%

Source: CDCR 2005 n=125,961

163

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

164

APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION

Appendix N—Detailed CDCR Program Review Information
Nominated Recidivism Reduction Program Inventory (NRRPI)au
Tables N-1 to N-12 provide baseline program information for each of the identified
CDCR Nominated Recidivism Reduction Programs. These tables provide this
information (where available) for each of the programs:
•	
•	
•	
•	
•	
•	
•	

Program Location: In which location(s) is the program operating?
Program Capacity: How many spaces are available for offenders in the program?
Eligibility: Which offenders are eligible to participate in the program?
Program Content: What does the program contain? How is it delivered?
Program Duration: For how long does the program last?
Completion Criteria: What is required to successfully complete the program?
Partnerships with Other Programs/Agencies: Does the program work with other
programs?
•	 Evaluation: Is there an evaluation strategy or methodology for the program?

au	
The Panel wishes to express its thanks to Jesse Janetta and the CEBC staff at UC Irvine, along
with Bupha Chen of the CDCR for their invaluable assistance in preparing the NRRPI.
165

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Academic and Vocational Programs
Academic Education
Many offenders have serious educational deficits and low levels of academic achievement.
Academic education programs are programs with the primary goal of addressing those
deficits by providing offenders with basic skills in reading, writing, mathematics, and other
general core competencies, as opposed to vocational education programs, which provide
skills specifically relevant to particular professions. These basic skills are not only valuable
for offenders in themselves, but serve as preparation for offenders to participate in CDCR
programs that involve written material.
The bulk of academic programming for CDCR offenders is delivered in prison by the CDCR
Office of Correctional Education (OCE). OCE provides Academic Courses designed to
assist offenders starting to advance from any educational level to passing the GED exam.
That core institutional programming is enhanced by two programs funded by the U.S.
Department of Education—Elementary Secondary Education Act and Incarcerated Youthful
Offenders.
Computerized Literacy Learning Centers is the only academic program in the NRRPI that
serves parolees. It does not interface directly with the in-prison academic programming
provided by OCE.

166

APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION

Table N-1: CDCR Academic Education Programs
Academic Courses

Computerized Literacy
Learning Centers (CLLC)

Elementary Secondary
Education Act (ESEA)

Program
Location

All CDCR adult institutions

21 parole offices statewide.

10 CDCR adult institutions.

Program
Capacity

11,529 students

323 offenders.

No set capacity.

Eligibility

All offenders without a high
school diploma, unless
classified as extremely high
risk unable to participate for
medical reasons.

All offenders are eligible for
CLLC.

Offenders under 21 years of
age enrolled in a state-funded
educational program.

Program
Content

Individualized classroom
instruction in reading, math,
writing, ESL and other
subjects.

Self-paced study of a
computer-based math and
reading curriculum.

Remedial education
supplementing Academic
courses.

Program
Duration

Variable, depending on
starting level and degree of
motivation.

40 hours of instruction
recommended, students
can remain as long as they
benefit.

Until participants turn 21

Completion
Criteria

Passing GED exam.

Two grade level increase
in math and/or reading or
passing GED exam.

None.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

None

Some CLLCs located in
Residential Multi-Service
Centers. Teachers maintain
relations with community
services.

ESEA supplements other
CDCR education programs
in which participants are
enrolled.

Evaluation

None

As part of PPCP  evaluation
by SDSU. Participation
associated with reduced
likelihood of re-incarceration.

None

167

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Vocational—Employment
CDCR vocational and employment programs aim to facilitate employment for offenders after
their return to the community by providing:
1.	 Specific vocational training in certification in areas such as auto repair
2.	 Employment readiness and job search assistance, with activities ranging from mock job
interviews, resume preparation, and referrals to specific employers
Vocational training is supplied to CDCR prisoners through vocational education courses
offered by OCE, and through programs operated by PIA. PIA engages in a number of
partnership programs to connect PIA participation with post-release employment, which we
summarize in a separate table (Table N-4) from the other vocational-employment programs.
CDCR vocational education, by contrast, does not have formal mechanisms to connect
participation in its courses with post-release employment, although it does have a reliable
employment pipeline for graduates of some of its highly specialized courses, most notably
eye wear manufacture.
There are several programs in addition to PIA initiatives devoted specifically to delivering
employment readiness and job search assistance to prisoners as they are preparing to
return to the community and/or once they have returned to the community from prison.
The Offender Employment Continuum (OEC) begins working on employment readiness
and planning for prisoners four months before they are releases. At the inception of the
program, OEC also provided job specialists based on parole offices to assist in post-release
job placement, but the funding for that aspect has been discontinued. OEC now refers to the
Employment Development Department and Parolee Employment Program programs, which
provide job specialists to work with parolees and assist them with finding employment.

168

APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION

Table N-2: CDCR Vocational–Employment Programs–1
Community Re-Entry
Partnerships (CRP)

Employment Development
Department (EDD)
Program

Program
Location

San Diego County

Statewide.

12 prisons, with post-release
services available statewide

Program
Capacity

200 offenders.

337 offenders.

540 offenders.

Eligibility

Offenders working for the
Prison Industry Authority
(PIA) and paroling to San
Diego County within six to
nine months. Ineligible: sex
offenders.

All offenders on parole who
are able to work.

CDCR offenders with a GED
or high school diploma who
are twenty-five years of age
or younger, have less than
five years to serve and will
parole prior to their 26th
birthdays.

Program
Content

Case management from
transitional coordinators, job
coaching and job preparation
assistance

Job search workshop and
job referrals and assistance
provided by EDD job
specialists.

Associate’s degree and
life skills coursework by
distance learning, vocational
certification and post-release
case management services.

Program
Duration

One year prior to release, 6
months post-release

Offenders may be served
as long as they are seeking
work.

3 months to 5 years.

Completion
Criteria

Complete a 6-month postrelease “active” period,
followed by 6 months of
follow-up

Obtain and maintain
employment for 30 days.

No formal completion criteria;
services last a year after
release

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

CRP has referral relationships
with PIA and SASCA

The Employment
Development Department
(EDD) provides job specialists
to work with parolees.

Post-release follow-up
services and tracking of
progress occur in conjunction
with community-based
agencies

Evaluation

None

None

Annual evaluation report to
U.S. DOE, comparing IYO
participant recidivism rate
to CDCR population, without
controlling for differences
between participants and
non-participants.

169

Incarcerated Youthful
Offenders (IYO)

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Table N-3: CDCR Vocational–Employment Programs–2
Offender Employment
Continuum (OEC)

Parolee Employment
Program (PEP)

Program
Location

5 prisons.

Fresno, Bakersfield, San
Francisco, Alameda,
Santa Clara, Los Angeles,
Inglewood, Riverside and San
Diego parole complexes.

All but three CDCR adult
institutions.

Program
Capacity

750 offenders.

240 offenders.

10,584 offenders.

Eligibility

Inmates within 120 days of
release.

Offenders on parole seeking
employment.

All offenders are eligible to
participate regardless of
educational level or length of
incarceration.

Program
Content

Employment readiness
Job seeking workshop,
workshops and development
employment counseling.
of Individual Education Career
Service Plans.

Classroom instruction and
shop time for hands-on skills
in a variety of vocational
areas.

Program
Duration

3 weeks (Employability
Workshop).

6 months.

At least 3 months, with
instructors encouraged to
have students in a course no
longer than 2 years.

Completion
Criteria

Attend 90 hours of
programming, complete all
assessments and related
activities, and develop
Employability Portfolio.

No formal completion criteria.

Nearly all vocational courses
are completed by passing
a certification exam and
earning a certification in that
job skill.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

Post-release referrals to PEP
and EDD programs, with
follow-up.

Referral relationships for
food, clothing and shelter
services with community
programs such as church
shelters.

Program certifications and
curriculum are provided
through professional
organizations such as
the National Center for
Construction Education and
Research (NCCER).

Evaluation

As part of PPCP evaluation
by SDSU. Participation
associated with reduced
likelihood of re-incarceration.

None.

None.

170

Vocational Education

APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION

Table N-4: CDCR Vocational–Employment Programs–3
Inmate Employability
Program (IEP)

Employment Re-Entry
Partnership (ERP)

Carpentry PreApprenticeship Program

Program
Location

Statewide.

Sacramento County.

Folsom State Prison,
California Institution for
Women

Program
Capacity

6,000 offenders.

75 offenders.

100 (Folsom), 25 (CIW)

Eligibility

Any offender who has worked
six months for PIA, with the
general exception of those
serving life sentences.

PIA participants who will
parole to Sacramento County.
Ineligible: sex offenders.

Offenders with at least a year
to serve before parole who
have the potential to earn a
GED.

Program
Content

Job training, placement into
industry-accredited vocational
certification courses, resumewriting and mock job
interviews.

Employment workshops,
post-release case
management with job search
assistance.

Building trades and GED
instruction.

Program
Duration

Duration of sentence, but
averaging 6 months.

15 hour employment
workshop, with case
management 9 months prior
to and 12 months following
release.

6 months, or until offender
obtains GED.

Completion
Criteria

Pass the proctored exam
and receive vocational
certification.

Accomplish Individual
Service Plan objective and
maintain employment or in
an educational or vocational
program twelve months after
release.

Obtain a GED and pass the
Carpenter’s Union curriculum.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

PIA’s Job Referral Program
works with IEP participants.

ERP is a partnership between
PIA and PRIDE Industries,
which provides the case
management and commits
to place participants in
employment within 30 days
of release. PIA’s Job Referral
Program works with ERP
participants

The Carpentry PreApprenticeship program
is a partnership with the
Carpenter’s Union.

Evaluation

None.

In the planning stages.

In the planning stages.

171

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Family Reunification—Female Offender
Female offenders have criminogenic risk factors and treatment needs very different from
those of male offenders. They are also much more likely than male offenders to have been
the primary caregivers to their children prior to incarceration. The three programs in this
category are interventions designed in response to those facts. Each is a residential program
built on a Therapeutic Community model. All three allow dependent children under the age
of six to live with their mothers, and CPMP and FFP serve only mothers and their children.
Each program provides capacity for intensive gender-responsive and family reunification
intervention at a different point in the CDCR system. Female offenders are sentenced to
FFP as an alternative to incarceration, accepted into CPMP from a CDCR female institution,
and admitted to FOTEP as parolees. The programs also interlock, with many CPMP and FFP
participants entering FOTEP as part of their transition to the community.

172

APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION
Table N-5: CDCR Family Reunification–Female Offender Programs
Female Offender
Treatment and
Employment Program
(FOTEP)

Community Prisoner
Mother Program (CPMP)

Family Foundations
Program (FFP)

Program
Location

Bakersfield, Oakland, Pomona

Santa Fe Springs, San Diego.

Fresno, Bakersfield,
Sacramento, Stockton,
San Francisco, LA County
(3 sites), San Bernardino
County, San Diego.

Program
Capacity

71 offenders, plus their
children.

70 offenders, plus their
children.

409 offenders.

Eligibility

Female offenders who are
pregnant or parenting a
child under the age of six.
Ineligible: offenders with
convictions for violent
offenses, history of child
abuse, or a history of prison
disciplinary infractions or
escapes.

Female offenders who are
pregnant or parenting a child
under the age of six, have a
history of substance abuse,
and sentenced to state prison
term of 36 months or less.
Ineligible: offenders who
have served a prior prison
term or been convicted of
murder, kidnapping, rape,
mayhem or sodomy by force.

Female offenders on parole
who have completed an incustody Substance Abuse
Program, including CPMP or
FFP. Ineligible: women who
have a history of serious
violence, arson, sexual
offenses, willful child cruelty,
and child endangerment.

Program
Content

Community-based modified
therapeutic community for
mother and their children.
Provides gender-responsive
treatment and services, with
a focus on family reunification

Community-based therapeutic
community for mother
and their children. Offers
program tracks for substance
abuse treatment, vocational
services, and parenting and
child development services.

Community-based therapeutic
community offering substance
abuse treatment, vocational
services, case management
and other gender-responsive
treatment and services.

Program
Duration

Depends on length of
sentence

12 months, followed by a
year of intensive parole.

6-15 months.

Completion
Criteria

Reach treatment plan goals
and complete sentence

Actively participate
in programming and
demonstrate progress;
complete the full 12 months
of sentenced time, and refrain
from violence, threats of
violence, substance use and
other criminal behavior.

Complete all aspects of
treatment plan, secure
employment, and establish a
structured savings.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

Weekly group with a FOTEP
counselor. Some participants
are released from CPMP and
go directly to FOTEP.

Residents can attend AA/NA
meetings in the community
upon reaching upper phase
status. Residents interview
for admission to transitional
housing resources and
outpatient counseling prior to
program completion

Recruits participants from
in-prison SAP’s, FFP and
CPMP. FOTEP has active
alumni groups and referral
relationships to communitybased services, including
SASCA-funded sober living
facilities.

Evaluation

None

None.

Evaluated by UCLA ISAP.
Parolees who did not
complete FOTEP treatment
were twice as likely to return
to custody as those who
did, and FOTEP participants
had lower rates of drug
and alcohol use, and higher
rates of employment and
living with children than a
comparison group of female
parolees eligible for FOTEP
who did not participate.

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Community-Based Multi-Service
Many parolees require services of multiple types in structured settings to successfully
transition to the community from prison, particularly in the critical period immediately after
release. The four programs in this category are designed to provide the capacity to deliver
that type of intervention to CDCR parolees. All four provide multiple services (substance
abuse treatment, employment/vocational services, life skills, case management, etc.) at
a high level of intensity. The CBC, PSC, and RMSC are residential programs, while DRC
participants must report to the facility daily for program sessions and program compliance
monitoring.

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APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION

Table N-6: CDCR Community-Based Multi-Service Programs
Community-Based
Coalition (CBC)

Day Reporting
Center (DRC)

Parolee Service
Centers (PSC)

Residential MultiService Center
(RMSC)

Program
Location

Los Angeles, with incustody component in
three institutions.

Fresno.

Service to 20 counties

9 counties.

Program
Capacity

125 (first six
months), 400 (next
12 months).

100 offenders.

685 offenders.

729 offenders.

Eligibility

Offenders returning
to Los Angeles SPA-6
who are homeless,
indigent or in an
at-risk environment.
Ineligible: offenders
with a history of
violence, arson, or
sex offenses.

Program targets
offenders with an
increased risk of
returning to custody.
DRC takes any
offender referred by
CDCR.

Offenders on
parole who are
having difficulty
stabilizing under
parole supervision.
Ineligible: sex
offenders, gang
members, and
arsonists.

Program targets
offenders who are
homeless, indigent,
or in an environment
that increases their
risk of re-offending.
Ineligible: sex
offenders, violent,
and arson offenders.

Program
Content

Transitional
housing with case
management and
substance abuse,
employment and
other services

Non-residential multiservice. Participants
report regularly
and participate in
cognitive-behavioral
treatment and
services linked to
assessed needs.

Residential multiservice, with case
management,
employment
development, life
skills, substance
abuse and cognitivebehavioral treatment.

Residential multiservice, with life
skills, substance
abuse and cognitivebehavioral treatment.

Program
Duration

180 days

Depends on client
progress; 5 months
typical.

3-12 months

6-12 months.

Completion
Criteria

Satisfactorily
complete aftercare
phase and
recommended for
graduation by their
case manager

Passed all drug and
alcohol tests for nine
months, complete
MRT Step 16, have
employment and
stable housing.

Remain in the
program for at least
90 days, remain
clean and sober, be
employed, saving
money, attending
groups and involved
in family reunification.

Demonstrate
commitment to
changing behavior,
actively participate
in treatment, nonthreatening conduct,
pass all random drug
screens and abide by
program guidelines.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

Case managers
operate on a
network model,
building cooperative
relationships between
participants, their
family members,
service providers and
other community
members

Weekly Community
Corrections Program
session with a
representative from a
community resource.

Referrals through
case managers.

Residents required to
attend outside AA/NA
meetings.

Evaluation

None (program
initiated April, 2007).

DRC through same
provider evaluated in
Chicago, with returns
to custody lower in
DRC group than in
comparison group

None.

As part of PPCP
evaluation by
SDSU. Participation
associated with
reduced likelihood of
re-incarceration.

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Life Skills—Transition Preparation—Anger Management
Many of the programs in the NRRPI have components that seek to provide participants with
life skills, such as anger management, goal setting, and decision-making. The four programs
in this category are distinct in that the provision of such skills is the primary focus of all of
the programs. All are delivered in CDCR institutions, with BEP, CALM and Reentry Education
provided by OCE. The three OCE programs in this category fulfill different functions in the
prison program environment. Prisoners are enrolled in BEP so that they can begin earning
work-time release credits by engaging in distance-learning self-study while on a waiting list
for a job or programming assignment. Prisoners are referred to CALM during their periods
of incarceration based on their histories of having issues with anger management. Prisoners
enroll in Reentry Education near the end of their terms of incarceration as preparation for
release.
The SB 618 and S.T.A.N.D. U.P. are new programs providing much longer and more
intensive intervention with offenders than the others in this category. The SB 618
program is a collaborative effort between counties (beginning with San Diego) and the
CDCR to comprehensively assess offenders at sentencing. It is also designed to provide
case management both during the term of incarceration and after release to ensure that
offenders’ assessed risks and needs factors are addressed through existing programs.
S.T.A.N.D. U.P. has a housing unit dedicated to it at San Quentin. Participating prisoners
commit to engage in extensive programming throughout their terms of incarceration,
beginning with a mandatory CALM course and continuing with both CDCR-offered and
volunteer-operated programs. In addition to delivering both mandatory and optional life
skills, anger management, and transition preparation programming, the entire living
environment is designed to encourage pro-social norms and values.

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Table N-7: CDCR Life Skills–Transition Preparation–Anger Management Programs
Bridging Education
Program (BEP)

Conflict Anger Lifelong
Management (CALM)

Program
Location

All CDCR adult institutions

10 classrooms in 6 adult
institutions.

All CDCR adult institutions.

Program
Capacity

No capacity limit

270 offenders.

1,107 offenders.

Eligibility

Offenders eligible to earn
worktime credits who have
not received a worktime
credit assignment.

Any offender eligible for
CDCR academic courses.

Offenders within 180 days of
their release dates. Ineligible:
offenders with INS holds.

Program
Content

Independent/distance
learning self-study with
the facilitation of the
teacher. Includes Life Plan
development, basic literacy
and life skills.

Classroom-based life skills
curriculum designed to assist
students to manage anger
and resolve conflict.

Classroom–based cognitivebehavioral and reentry
preparation curriculum.

Program
Duration

2 to 4 months, average.

6 weeks.

3 weeks (male offenders), 6
weeks (female offenders).

Completion
Criteria

Completion of all Life Plan
competencies or receive a
permanent job assignment.

Demonstrated proficiency in
course concepts, completion
of two interactive journals,
participation in all program
activities.

Completion of eight
certification units with
demonstrated proficiency.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

Life Plan identifies
programming for participants
to pursue during incarceration
and parole.

None.

CDCR funds Re-Entry
Community Liaisons for
follow-up services in
Alameda, Sacramento and
Fresno Counties.

Evaluation

None

None

None

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Substance Abuse—Health—Mental Health
Substance Abuse Treatment
The CDCR contracts for extensive substance abuse treatment both inside its correctional
institutions and in communities across California for parolees. The CDCR substance abuse
program mix provides the capacity to do three things:
1.	 Deliver substance abuse treatment to offenders while in prison to prepare them for a
successful return to the community
2.	 Place in-prison substance abuse into aftercare upon their release from prison
3.	 Intervene with parolees who have relapsed to substance use
The first function is provided by Substance Abuse Programs (SAPs) in 21 institutions, plus
the Drug Treatment Furlough program and Transitional Treatment Program, all therapeutic
communities focused on the transition from prison to community. The second function is
important because research on CDCR SAPs has consistently found that the most effective
course of substance abuse treatment involves participation in an in-prison component,
followed by accessing aftercare in the community subsequent to release. The in-prison
SAPs and DTFs work with the Substance Abuse Service Coordinating Agency (SASCA)
and Parolee Services Network (PSN) programs to place participants in aftercare. SASCA
and PSN coordinate networks of community-based substance abuse treatment providers
in communities throughout California, allowing the CDCR to utilize and enhance existing
substance abuse treatment capacities for its parolees.
For parolees who relapse to drug use while in on parole, the Substance Abuse Treatment
and Recovery program, In-Custody Drug Treatment Program (ICDTP), and Parolee
Substance Abuse Program (PSAP) offer intervention options. PSN also works with parolees
in this situation. STAR and PSN participants remain in the community, while the more
intensive ICDTP and PSAP place parolees in a secure environment, either a prison or jail, to
stabilize and receive treatment before transitioning them to community-based aftercare.

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Table N-8: CDCR Substance Abuse Treatment Programs–1

S.B. 618

S.T.A.N.D. U.P. (Successful Transitions
and New Directions Utilizing
Partnerships)

Program
Location

R. J. Donovan, CIW, San Diego County.

San Quentin SP, H Unit.

Program
Capacity

6 admitted per week, for the first two years.

1100 offenders.

Eligibility

Nonviolent offenders with prison terms
of less than six years. Ineligible: parole
violators (returned to custody based on a
Board of Prison Terms determination), prison
gang members, sex offenders, arsonists,
offenders in a Secure Housing Unit (SHU) or a
Protective Housing Unit, and Prop 36-eligible
offenders.

Offenders with 6 months to 5 years remaining
on their prison terms. Ineligible: offenders
with recent violent behavior or terms in a
Secure Housing Unit.

Program
Content

In-prison and post-release case management
to deliver programming based on risk and
needs assessment. A life plan is developed for
each participant and is used throughout the
incarceration period and during reentry into
the community.

Housing unit dedicated to intentional
community, with mandatory life skills
curriculum and requirements for extensive
additional program participation.

Program
Duration

Term of incarceration plus 18 month postrelease period.

24 weeks, with one year post-release followup.

Completion
Criteria

Meet Life Plan goals, have a job, free of
felony convictions, be able to care for
themselves, and successfully discharge from
parole.

Completion of required programming and one
year post-release follow-up period.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

SB 618 project is a collaboration between
CDCR and local criminal justice agencies,
including parole, probation, local jails, district
attorneys offices, public defenders offices,
and the courts.

Most S.T.A.N.D. U.P. programming provided
by community programs and volunteers.

Evaluation

Will be conducted by San Diego Association of
Governments.

Planned once program has been operating
long enough.

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Table N-9: CDCR Substance Abuse Treatment Programs–2
Drug Treatment Furlough
(DTF)

In-Custody Drug
Treatment Program
(ICDTP)

Parolee Services Network
(PSN)

Program
Location

17 sites, in Fresno, Kern, Los
Angeles, Orange, San Joaquin
and San Diego Counties.

In-custody component
operates in Kern, Tulare,
Del Norte, Santa Clara, San
Francisco County jails, and
Chula Vista City jail.

17 counties

Program
Capacity

807 offenders.

288 offenders.

620 offenders.

Eligibility

Offenders in an SAP with less
than 120 days until parole.
Ineligible: violent offenders,
sex offenders, arsonists, and
dual diagnosis offenders.

Parole violators with a
history of substance abuse.
Ineligible: violent offenders,
sex offenders, offenders
with less than 120 days
remaining on parole, or who
reside in counties in which
residential aftercare service
are unavailable.

Offenders on parole with
need for substance abuse
treatment, usually referred
by parole agent. Ineligible:
violent offenders, sex
offenders and arsonists.

Program
Content

Therapeutic community
targeting substance abuse,
but also providing case
management, life skills,
vocational and parenting
programming.

60 days in-custody cognitivebehavioral substance abuse
treatment, 30 days of
residential aftercare, 60
days of participation on
community-based substance
abuse program.

Provision of substance abuse
treatment through a network
of local service providers.
Varies across counties,
but generally includes
detoxification, residential
drug treatment, sober living
and outpatient services.

Program
Duration

120 days.

150 days.

180 days

Completion
Criteria

Complete 120 days in
program, be in good program
standing, and current with
treatment plan.

Completion of all three
phases, 150 days of
treatment.

Variable across providers.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

DTF completers have the
option to continue beyond
120 days in a program
provided by the DTF provider.

ICDTP is a sequenced
continuum from in-custody
treatment to SASCAcontracted residential
aftercare to community-based
programs such as NA/AA.

PSN operates on collaboration
between CDCR, Division
of Addiction and Recovery
Services, DADP, county
alcohol and drug programs,
and community-based
treatment providers.

Evaluation

None

Based on STAR curriculum,
which has been evaluated by
San Diego State University
(SDSU) as a component of
PPCP.

As part of Preventing Parolee
Crime Program evaluation
by SDSU. Participation
associated with reduced
likelihood of re-incarceration.

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Table N-10: CDCR Substance Abuse Treatment Programs–3
Parolee Substance Abuse
Program (PSAP)

Substance Abuse
Programs (SAPs)

Substance Abuse Service
Coordinating Agency
(SASCA)

Program
Location

Folsom State Prison, serving
parolees from Sacramento,
Yolo, Butte, San Joaquin,
Alpine, Amador, Sutter, Yuba,
and Stanislaus Counties

21 adult institutions.

Statewide.

Program
Capacity

200 offenders.

9,000 offenders.

2,000 offenders.

Eligibility

Parole violators with a
history of substance abuse.
Ineligible: violent offenders,
sex offenders, gang members
or associates, or parolees
housed in a secure housing
unit (SHU) within six months
of their release.

Offenders with substance
abuse problems and between
6 and 36 months remaining
on their sentences. Ineligible:
gang members and inmates
placed in SHU due to a
serious assault incident within
the past year.

Offenders on parole who have
completed an in-prison SAP
or Drug Treatment Furlough.
Ineligible: serious and violent
offenders.

Program
Content

In-custody cognitivebehavioral substance abuse
treatment supplemented
with employability and life
skills courses, and voluntary
aftercare.

Cognitive-behavioral
substance abuse treatment
delivered in a therapeutic
community setting, with
transitional planning.

Placement of offenders in
substance abuse aftercare,
with advocacy and case
management.

Program
Duration

90 days

6 to 36 months.

180 days.

Completion
Criteria

Complete in-prison program
phases and a Community
Transition Plan in 90 days.

Completion of the final
program phase and parole
from the program.

Meet the requirements of the
community-based provider
and their treatment goals.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

PSAP Independent Study
Teachers well versed
in available community
programs.

SAPs host in-reach activities
from a variety of community
programs, with a focus on
substance abuse aftercare
providers such as Substance
Abuse Coordinating Service
Agency (SASCA).

SASCA contracts for services
with a wide variety of
community-based aftercare
and treatment providers, and
recruits clients from SAPs and
Drug Treatment Furlough.

Evaluation

Based on Substance Abuse
Treatment and Recovery
curriculum, which has been
evaluated by San Diego State
University as a component of
PPCP.

Extensive evaluation by
UCLA Integrated Substance
Abuse Program, indicating
that participation in SAPs
and post-release aftercare
is associated with reduced
recidivism, but participation
in SAPs without aftercare
has negligible impact on
recidivism.

None.

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

Table N-11: CDCR Substance Abuse Treatment Programs–4
Substance Abuse Treatment and
Recovery (STAR)

Transitional Treatment Program (TTP)

Program
Location

Parole offices in 19 counties.

Folsom State Prison.

Program
Capacity

568 offenders.

203 offenders.

Eligibility

All offenders on parole are eligible.

Offenders with a history of substance
abuse and between 120 days and 6 months
remaining on their sentences. Ineligible:
offenders housed in a SHU due to a serious
assault incident within the past year, or
classified to the Enhance Outpatient Program.

Program
Content

Cognitive-behavioral substance abuse
curriculum delivered in a classroom setting.

Cognitive-behavioral substance abuse
treatment delivered in a therapeutic
community setting, with an emphasis on
transitional planning.

Program
Duration

4 weeks.

4-6 months.

Completion
Criteria

Completion of 20 days of class and a
Community Transition Plan.

Completion of required assignments
consistent with length of time in the program
and paroling from the program.

Partnerships
with Other
Programs/
Agencies

Participants complete Community Transition
Plans which identify community-based
agencies that can assist them with their
specific needs.

Collaborative case management activities
with TTP participants, institutional correctional
counselors, SASCA staff and DARS.

Evaluation

As part of Preventing Parolee Crime Program
evaluation by San Diego State University.
Completion associated with reduced likelihood
of re-incarceration; participation without
completion associated with an increased
likelihood of incarceration.

None.

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APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION

Survey for the CDCR Offender Risk Reduction Program Inventory and CPAP
Assessment
Please submit your program manual, staff training curriculum materials and other
program documentation, and address each of the following questions. If the program
material you are submitting contains the answer to one of the questions, simply indicate
where it can be found.
This survey is intended to gather basic program information on a variety of institutional
and community/parole programs. As a result, there may be questions that are not relevant
or appropriate to the type of program you operate. If a question is not relevant or
appropriate to your program, please indicate “Not applicable.”
Electronic copies of the survey and program materials should be returned to Jesse
Jannetta, UC Irvine, at jjannett@uci.edu and to Tina Leonard, CDCR Office or Research,
at tina.leonard@cdcr.ca.gov. Hard copy surveys and program material should be sent to:
Tina Leonard
Office of Research, CDCR
1515 S Street
Sacramento, CA 95814

NRRPI SURVEY INSTRUMENT, P1

Questions about the survey can be directed to Jesse Jannetta, at jjannett@uci.edu, or 949824-5324.
Thank you very much for completing this survey.
A. Program Characteristics
1. Program Name: ____________________________
2. Program Director: _______________________
Phone:_________
E-mail:___________
3. Program Location: ______________________
4. When did the program begin operation? _______________________
5. Please list the program goals.

1

6. What is the treatment/service delivery approach employed by the program to meet the
goals?

7. What research evidence supports the program’s approach? Please provide
documentation or citation.

8. What is the theory underlying the program approach?

NRRPI SURVEY INSTRUMENT, P2

B. Program Eligibility and Admissions
1. Which offenders are eligible for the program?

2. Which offenders are ineligible for the program?

3. How is program eligibility determined?

4. Does the program target offenders at a certain risk level (high, medium, low)?
Yes ___ No____
a. If so, how is that risk level assessed?

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
5. What criminogenic needs/deficits does the program seek to address?
__ Antisocial thinking/attitudes
__ Substance Abuse
__ Weak problem-solving/decision-making skills __ Educational deficit
__ Vocational/employment deficit
__ History of abuse/neglect
__ Criminal association
__ Weak socialization
__ Aggression/anger management
__ Other _________________________
6. How are offender needs assessed?

7. How does the program use needs assessment information?

8. What is the program capacity? _____________________

NRRPI SURVEY INSTRUMENT, P3

9. How are program participants selected from the pool of eligible offenders?

C. Program Structure
1. What activities and services constitute the program? (Group meetings, mentoring,
individual counseling, classroom instruction, role playing, etc.)

2. How would you characterize the setting in which the program is delivered?
(classroom, one on one, therapeutic community, self-study, etc.)

3. How long are program sessions? ______ hrs. (Estimate average and/or range if it
varies.)
4. How many program sessions are there per week? _________ (Estimate average
and/or range if it varies.)

5. How long does the program last? __________ mos. (Estimate average and/or range if
it varies.)

3

6. Are there different phases or steps in the program? If so, what must participants do to
advance from one phase or step to the next?

7. What criteria, if any, must participants meet in order to successfully complete the
program?

NRRPI SURVEY INSTRUMENT, P4
8. Does the program utilize cognitive behavioral or social learning methods?
Yes ___ No____
b. If “Yes,” please describe.

9. What methods do program staffers utilize to support and encourage offender
motivation to change? (Behavior modeling, motivational interviewing, social learning,
etc.)

10. How does the program respond to individual differences in offender learning style,
level of motivation, level of maturity, cultural background, and other relevant differences
in receptiveness?

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APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION
11. What positive reinforcement and incentives does the program offer for participants?

12. What sanctions exist for program non-compliance?

13. What continuities exist between program activities and offender families, community
support networks, or other programs?

D. Staff Qualifications/Selection/Training

NRRPI SURVEY INSTRUMENT, P5

1. How many staffers are dedicated to the program? ________
2. How are program staff trained? (Please attach training material.)

3. How many program staff members have undergraduate degrees? _______
a. Of those with undergraduate degrees, how many have degrees in a helping
profession? (social services/social work, substance abuse treatment, etc.)
_________
4. Does the program have a strategy for recruitment and retention of staff?
Yes ___ No____
a. If “Yes,” please describe.

5. Was the current program director involved in the design of the program?
Yes ___ No____
6. How many years experience does the program director have working with offenders?
________

5

7. Does the director have a degree in social work or a related field? (if a related field,
please indicate which) Yes ___ No____
E. Measurement and Evaluation
1. What performance measurement data does the program collect?

2. Does the program collect individual-level data on program participation?
Yes ___ No____

NRRPI SURVEY INSTRUMENT, P6

3. What are the program’s outcome measures, and how are they tracked?

4. Is program data forwarded to and analyzed by a non-program entity?
Yes ___ No____
a. If so, who?

5. Has the program had an outside evaluation of program effectiveness?
Yes ___ No____
a. If “Yes,” who conducted this evaluation? Where can it be obtained?

b. If “No,” is such an evaluation planned?

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CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
CPAP Scoring Worksheet
Effective Interventions Scale
Item and Scoring Rules
1. Risk Assessment at Pre-Program Phase
Scoring rules:
x Program conducts or relies on a risk assessment
instrument to determine the appropriateness of
the program to the risk level of the offender
x Risk assessment instrument is meaningful
(offenders can be excluded from program based
on assessment)
x Assessment tool is reliable and valid, as shown
by previous research (validity must be based on
CA data within the past five years)
x 2 points awarded for use of a valid risk
assessment
x 1 point awarded for targeting high risk offenders
Maximum point value: 3

Rationale

Points

RATER SCORE SHEET, P1

2. Needs Assessment at Pre-Program Phase
Scoring rules:
x Program conducts or relies on a needs
assessment instrument to determine services
required by offender
x Needs assessment instrument is meaningful;
needs identified by instrument must align with a
case plan
x Program must target criminogenic needs of the
offender
x Assessment tool is reliable and valid, as shown
by previous research (see above for criteria)
Maximum point value: 4 (all points or none)

CPAP Scoring Worksheet

RATER SCORE SHEET, P2

Item and Scoring Rules
3. Program Model
A. Theoretical Base
Scoring rules:
x Program must be based on a clearly articulated
theoretical model that links the intervention
directly to an offender’s criminogenic needs
x No points awarded for programs that address
only non-criminogenic needs, or fail to link the
intervention to addressing a criminogenic need
Maximum point value: 2
B. Program Manual
Scoring rule:
x Program manual or curricular materials exist
Maximum point value: 2 (all points or none)
C. CBT/Social Learning
Scoring rule:
x Program uses cognitive behavioral therapy or
social learning methods
Maximum point value: 2 (all points or none)
D. Intrinsic Motivation
Scoring rule:
x Program enhances intrinsic motivation (i.e.,
motivational interviewing techniques are used)
Maximum point value: 1
E. Program Continuity
Scoring rules:
x Produces continuities between program activities
and communities, families, and other programs
x 1 point awarded for community coordination
x 1 point awarded for coordination with families or
other programs

Rationale

CPAP Scoring Worksheet
Maximum point value: 2
Item and Scoring Rules
F. Variable Program Dosage
Scoring rules:
x Program dosage varies with offender risk level
(higher risk offenders receive greater program
dosage)
x No points awarded to programs that do not
determine the risk level of participants
x Programs that only serve high-risk offenders
cannot be scored (indicate “N/A”)
Maximum point value: 1
G. Responsivity
Scoring rules:
x Program design reflects the responsivity
principle
x Program has procedures to determine the
preparedness of the offender for the program
x Program has procedures to match delivery of
program to learning style of offender
x No points awarded for programs that deliver to
all offenders in the same manner.
Maximum point value: 1

Rationale

Points

RATER SCORE SHEET, P3

186

Points

APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION
CPAP Scoring Worksheet
H. Positive Reinforcement
Scoring rule:
x Program design identifies positive reinforcement
strategies, not just sanctions
Maximum point value: 1

RATER SCORE SHEET, P4

Item and Scoring Rules
4. Program Administration
A. Staff Education
Scoring rules:
x 1 point awarded if 75% or more of service staff
possess an undergraduate degree
x 1 point awarded if, among those with degrees,
75% have degrees in a helping profession
Maximum point value: 2

Rationale

P

CPAP Scoring Worksheet
B. Relevant Work Experience
Scoring rule:
x 75% of staff have worked in offender treatment
programs for at least two years
Maximum point value: 1

C. Recruitment and Retention Strategies
Scoring rule:
x There is an explicit strategy for recruitment and
retention of staff (i.e., incentives such as
opportunities for advancement and ongoing
training)
Maximum point value: 1

Item and Scoring Rules
D. Initial Training
Scoring rule:
x Staff undergo an initial training on the program
model that includes written training materials
Maximum point value: 1

RATER SCORE SHEET, P5
Rationale

Points

E. Program Director
Scoring rules:
x 1 point awarded if program director was

CPAP Scoring Worksheet

RATER SCORE SHEET, P6

involved in the design of the program
x 1 point awarded for program directors with at
least three years experience with offenders
x 1 point awarded for program director with a
degree in social work or a related field
Maximum point value: 3
5. Quality Assurance
Scoring rules:
x 1 point awarded if program collects data to
monitor performance
x 1 point awarded for inclusion of individual-level
data on participation
x 1 point awarded for identification of the eligible
population
x 1 point awarded if data is forwarded and
analyzed by a non-program entity
Maximum point value: 4
TOTAL EFFECTIVE INTERVENTION POINTS AWARDED (MAX 31 POINTS)

Research Basis Scale
Item and Scoring Rules
1. Expert Recommendation
Scoring rule:
x An expert committee, respected advisory group,
or Best Practices panel recommends program
Point value: +1
2. Multiple Positive Evaluations

187

Rationale

Points

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS
CPAP Scoring Worksheet
Scoring rules:
x Multiple positive evaluations exist
x 1 point awarded for multiple positive
evaluations, with one or none at a Level 3 or
above (see Research Rigor scale below)
x 2 points total awarded for multiple positive
evaluations at or above a Level 3
Point value: +2

3. Peer-Reviewed Publication
Scoring rule:
x 2 points awarded for positive evaluations
reported in a peer-reviewed publication
Point value: +2 (all points or none)
4. Negative/No Effect Evaluations
Scoring rule:
x 1 point subtracted from Research Basis score for
evaluations that show no program effect, or that
demonstrate that program increases recidivism
Point value:  1
Item and Scoring Rules
Rationale
Points
5. Research Rigor
(Note: The Research Rigor scale is independent of the other items on the Research Basis scale. Programs can receive anywhere
from 0 to 10 points on this scale; they cannot be awarded points for multiple levels of rigor. Points should be awarded according
to the research rigor of the program’s strongest evaluation study.)

RATER SCORE SHEET, P7

CPAP Scoring Worksheet
Level 1 scoring qualifications:
x Correlation between program participation and
recidivism reduction, OR
x Temporal sequence between program
participation and recidivism reduction clearly
observed, OR
x Comparison group present without demonstrated
comparability to treatment group (with no
controls present)
Point value: + 1 point

RATER SCORE SHEET, P8

Level 2 scoring qualification:
x Comparison between two or more units of
analysis, one with and one without the program
(with partial controls)
Point value: + 4 points

Item and Scoring Rules

Rationale

CPAP Scoring Worksheet
Level 3 scoring qualifications:
x Comparison between multiple units with and
without the program, controlling for other
factors, OR
x Comparison between multiple units with and
without the program, using a non-equivalent
comparison group with only minor differences
evident
Point value: + 6 points

RATER SCORE SHEET, P9
Level 4 scoring qualification:
x Random assignment and analysis of comparable
units to program and comparison groups
Point value: + 10 points

TOTAL RESEARCH BASIS POINTS AWARDED (MAX 15 POINTS)

188

Points

APPENDIX N—DETAILED CDCR PROGRAM REVIEW INFORMATION

Research Referencs for Evaluations Used for Inventory and CPAP Ratings
Butzin, Clifford A., Martine, Steven S., Inciardi, James A. (2001). Evaluating Component
Effects of a Prison-Based Treatment Continuum. Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment, 22,
63-69.
Farabee, David. (2006). An Evaluation of California’s Mental Health Services Continuum
Probation for Parolees. Corrections Today. 68, 38-41.
Farabee, David., Bennett, Dave, Garcia, Dave, Warda, Umme, Yang, Joy. (2006). Final
Report on the Mental Health Services Continuum Program of the California Department
of Corrections and Rehabilitation – Parole Division. Los Angeles: The UCLA Integrated
Substance Abuse Program.
Grella, Christine. (2005). Female Offender Treatment and Employment Project (FOTEP):
Summary of Evaluation Findings 1999-2004. Los Angeles: The UCLA Integrated Substance
Abuse Program.
Grella, Christine. (2004). Female Offender Treatment and Employment Project (FOTEP):
Summary of Annual Evaluation Report for 2003-2004. Los Angeles: The UCLA Integrated
Substance Abuse Program.
Grella, Christine. (2005). Female Offender Treatment and Employment Program:Annual
Evaluation Report, 2004-2005. Los Angeles: The UCLA Integrated Substance Abuse
Program.
Illinois Department of Corrections (2002). Overview of the Illinois DOC High-Risk Parolee
Reentry Program and 3-Year Recidivism Outcomes for Program Participants. Springfield,
Illinois: Illinois Department of Corrections.
Inciardi, J.A., Martin, S.S., Butzin, C.A. and Hooper, L.D. (1997). An effective model of
prison-based treatment for drug-involved offenders. Journal of Drug Issues. 27: 261-278
Sherman, Lawrence W., Gottfredson, Denise, MacKenzie, Doris, Eck, John, Reuter, Peter,
Bushway, Shawn. (1997). Preventing Crime: What Works, What Doesn’t, What’s Promising.
Washington, D.C.: Office of Justice Program, US Department of Justice.
Zhang, Sheldon, Roberts, Robert E. L., Callanan, Valerie. (2006). An Evaluation of the
California Second Striker Program. San Diego: San Diego State University Research
Foundation.
Zhang, Sheldon, Roberts, Robert E. L., Callanan, Valerie. (2006). An Evaluation of the
California Preventing Parolee Crime Program. San Diego: San Diego State University
Research Foundation.
Zhang, Sheldon, Roberts, Robert E. L., Callanan, Valerie. (2006). Preventing Parolees from
Returning to Prison Through Community-Based Reintegration. Crime and Delinquency, 52,
551-571.

189

CDCR EXPERT PANEL ON ADULT OFFENDER REENTRY AND RECIDIVISM REDUCTION PROGRAMS

190

REFERENCES

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