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The Road to Reentry: A Randomized Control Trial of Young Adults in Custody from the Inside to the Outs

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2020, $1,557,676)

The applicant proposes a randomized controlled trial (RCT) to study the impact of being housed in a young adult treatment pod in a jail setting on institutional misconduct and recidivism. The Orange County (CA) Sheriff’s Department will implement a program similar to the Alleghany County Jail-based Reentry program in the Orange County jail for 18 to 25 year olds with a moderate-to-high risk of reoffending who have been sentenced for 3 to 12 months or are being held in jail and are likely to receive a sentence of 3 to 12 months. The RCT will rely on 300 participants, randomly assigned to the young adult pod with structured treatment (N=75, 3 cohorts of 25), young adult pod without treatment (N=75, 3 cohorts of 25), and the control of treatment as usual (N=150, 3 cohorts of 50). The pod with treatment will receive two phases of programming. While in the facility, the pod with treatment offenders will participate in regular meetings with a case manager, and involvement in a tailored, RNR treatment plan including group-based programming. Phase 2 will continue after release and will include connections to community providers such as at the Orangewood Foundation. Orangewood provides holistic programming to TAY and a resource center offering meals, showers, laundry, computer lab, housing assistance, therapeutic programming and linkages to community resources. The pod without treatment will give participants the opportunity to live in an age-segregated pod. The offenders will be offered the same resources as the control of treatment-as-usual (TAU). Participants will be interviewed in the facility at 3-months, 6-months, and upon release. They will also participate in 6 waves of post-release interviews, with the last wave at three years post-release. Participants will be compensated between $20 to $35 for the in-facility interviews and $50 to $150 for the post-release interviews. These interviews will be augmented by official records. The primary outcomes are in-facility misconduct and recidivism. The impact of the treatment groups will be analyzed using growth curve analysis and other analytic models appropriate for longitudinal designs. The study will also conduct correctional staff questionnaires. Staff participants will be offered compensation of $25 per interview. The interviews will focus on perceptions of the program, perceptions of young adult offenders, and their work history. Correctional officers will also receive training in young adult offender programming. Note: This project contains a research and/or development component, as defined in applicable law, and complies with Part 200 Uniform Requirements - 2 CFR 200.210(a)(14). CA/NCF

Date Created: September 16, 2020