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Stakeholder Statements Submitted in Response to NIJs First Step Act Listening Sessions

NCJ Number
Date Published
July 2019
108 pages
This report contains statements by stakeholders involved in various NIJ-sponsored listening sessions pertinent to the implementation of the federal First Step Act, whose provisions are intended to better prepare men and women in federal prison to return to their communities rehabilitated and job-ready.
One stakeholder statement focuses on the importance of developing and implementing an effective risk and needs assessment, which is the mechanism intended to ensure that those in federal prisons are matched to the programs and services that best meet their needs, which have been effectively identified upon admission to prison. A statement by another stakeholder elaborates on this theme in a discussion of evidence-based risk assessment, predictive factors for risk and recidivism, and best practices for the use of risk assessments. A third stakeholder statement on risk and need assessment focuses on the assessment of an offender's risk of recidivism as a central component of criminal sentencing. Another stakeholder statement emphasizes compliance with the First Step Act's provision that requires risk and needs assessment to be based on "indicators of progress, and of regression, that are dynamic and that can reasonably be expected to change while in prison." The emphasis of this statement is the application of this provision regardless of the nature of the crime committed. Other stakeholder statements pertain to cautions and recommendations that will ensure all incarcerated federal offenders, regardless of offender or offense characteristics, receive an objective risk and needs assessment that guides the management and programming for each inmate. regardless of offender or offense characteristics.

Date Published: July 1, 2019