Welcome to eFocus, an electronic newsletter produced by the NYS Division of Probation and Correctional Alternatives (DPCA). As part of DPCA's goal to promote public safety through probation services and other community corrections programs, it publishes this newsletter. We welcome your suggestions.

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eFocus, Issue Number 23, March 29, 2004

NYS Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives

Sara Tullar Fasoldt, State Director

Robert Maccarone, Executive Deputy Director


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1. Community Corrections Professionals from across the state to participate in dialogue about best practices and changing offender behaviors: Nationally recognized expert to be featured in statewide teleconference – March 31, 2004 – Join us!

“Advancing the Effectiveness of Community Corrections,” a live statewide teleconference, will be broadcast from Albany on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 from 9:30am to 11:30am to County Departments of Social Services (DSS) downlink locations. This teleconference is presented by DPCA and features Dr. Faye S. Taxman, Director of the Bureau of Governmental Research at the University of Maryland. Her appearance is being sponsored by the National Institute of Corrections. Presidents of several of the professional organizations, NYSPOA, NYSCOPA, and NYAPSA, will participate in a reaction panel, and questions from the viewing audience will be encouraged via fax. County probation departments have designated site coordinators in each county. Probation personnel should make reservations through their own departments. Other community corrections professionals should contact Yvonne Reece at the NYC Criminal Justice Agency at (646) 213-2509 for the name of their local site coordinator. Seating is limited and will be reserved on a first come, first served basis. Attendance will earn the Probation Officer approved training credits. Please don’t miss this opportunity to be included in a dialogue with your colleagues in community corrections across the state! Make your reservation today!

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2. Saving futures at the Center for Community Alternatives’ “Crossroads” program

Crossroads is one of many programs run within the Center for Community Alternatives (CCA), a DPCA funded program located both in NYC and in Syracuse. The NYC “Crossroads” program was recently the topic of an article appearing in the NY Daily News. According to the March 14th article, the program saves money, saves offenders from continuing to commit crimes and is “saving society, one life at a time.” The article focused on “Barbara”, an offender whose life has turned from crime and chaos to sobriety and skills. Rather than being sentenced to jail time, Barbara was sent to the CCA and in less than one year she was “clean and sober, in school learning computer and secretarial skills and living in temporary housing in Manhattan.” During this time, Barbara also regained custody of her children who had been in foster care. In addition to its drug and jobs programs and alternative to incarceration programs, CCA also runs a prison community reentry program. For more information on this story, or to learn more about programs offered at CCA, please contact Kathleen O’Boyle at the Center for Community Alternatives at (718) 858-9658.

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3. Debbie Wright, a 27 year veteran of the Hillbrook Detention Center, named 2004 Onondaga County Martin Luther King Day Honoree

Onondaga County Probation Commissioner Mary Winter recently shared news that the 2004 Onondaga County Martin Luther King Day Honoree is Deborah Wright of the Hillbrook Detention Center. Ms. Wright’s nomination was submitted by the Assistant Director of the Center, Mr. Julius Edwards who wrote that “Deborah Wright has dedicated her life to the tenet of servant leadership in her commitment to others and is an example of humble leadership following the principle espoused by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” Additionally, Edwards noted that “Debbie was well respected as a compassionate and caring community leader…and a tireless advocate for youth development through a variety of programs and services that serve to enhance the quality of life of all its residents. Our congratulations and esteem go out to Deborah.

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4. Tompkins County Probation and Community Justice Department’s Community Services program noted for meaningful services to the community

Last year, 40 offenders successfully completed the Tompkins County Probation and Community Justice Department’s Service Work Alternative Program (SWAP). Those offenders performed 3,380 hours of real service to their community including gathering over $3,000 worth of returnable bottles to contribute to the COPS, KIDS and TOYS program and assisting with the DUMP and RUN project at Cornell University where leftover student items are collected, sorted and resold. As a result of their efforts in DUMP and RUN project, $5,000 was donated to a nonprofit public assisting program in the community.

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5. Program and staff at the Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services (CASES) recognized and awarded for their work and achievements

For the second time a CASES program, the Career Exploration Project (CEP), has been awarded the Promising and Effective Practices Network Award for Best Practice Model of Youth Employment Programs. This program has been operating since 1997 and is an alternative to incarceration for teenaged felony offenders. CEP is an intensive internship program that applies the principles and best practices from the youth development field to help youth identify and build on their strengths. Additionally, three of CEP staff have been individually hailed: Ana Bermudez, Director of Community Prep High School -- by the Brooklyn Borough President for her combined work with youth and the public-at-large, Victor Jaroslaw, a teacher in CEP’s Education Unit, -- one of five after-school teachers in NYC to receive a Partnership for After School Education PASEsetter award, and Sana Musasama, CEP’s artist-in-residence, -- one of ten women nationwide to receive an “Anonymous Was A Woman” Award. Congratulations to all!

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6. The Jill Dando Institute of Crime – a wealth of information and research

The Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science is said to be the first institute in the world devoted specifically to reducing crime. According to information found on its website, the Institute’s devotion to crime reduction is demonstrated through teaching, research, public policy analysis and by the dissemination of evidence-based information on crime reduction. Its mission is to change crime policy and practice. The Institute plays a pivotal role in bringing together politicians, scientists, designers and those in the front line of fighting crime to examine patterns in crime, and to find practical methods to disrupt these patterns. The Jill Dando Institute of Crime Science is supported by the Jill Dando Fund as a permanent memorial to one of Britain's best-known television journalist, who was the victim of a violent crime. To learn more, visit this site at www.jdi.ucl.ac.uk/

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7. Identification of delinquency prevention strategies assistance available through the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP)

Because enormous strides have been made in recent years in identifying which interventions are effective, we at DPCA are dedicated to helping counties and other programs move their practices toward programs to replicate that have been subjected to the rigors of scientific evaluation and are shown to have significant results.

The Model Programs Guide and Database is designed to assist communities in identifying delinquency prevention strategies that will fit their needs and enhance their likelihood for success. Communities can use the Guide and Database to locate evidence based programs and strategies to ensure that their efforts can make a difference. All practitioners in juvenile justice, regardless of their funding sources, will find this a valuable resource. The database and guide is located at http://www.dsgonline.com/projects_titlev.html or http://ojjdp.ncjrs.org/title/index.html

For more information contact 301-951-0056 or Toll-free 1-877-5-Title 5. They will be able to refer you to their website as well.

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8. Welcomes, Awards and Remembrances

Pat Butler, Community Corrections Representative 2, recently retired from DPCA after many years of service in the field of probation. Pat served as a probation officer and supervisor in Erie County Probation where she managed the DWI supervision unit. She also served as DPCA representative to numerous local probation departments in Western New York with the title of Probation Program Consultant. More recently Pat was instrumental in helping to develop training for probation supervisors around the state and contributed to making the DPCA Fundamentals of Probation program an enjoyable and successful training experience for new officers. Pat takes with her the very best wishes of DPCA and the many local probation departments which have benefited from her relationships with them.

Please join us in welcoming Laura Wells Bauer to the DPCA staff as a Community Corrections Representative III. Laura will be working on Adult Probation and ATI Services with DPCA. Laura comes to DPCA with many years of probation and probation related experience. She was with the Albany County Probation Department for 11 years and has been a Rensselaer County Legislator since 1998. Laura most recently served as Deputy Troy City Clerk in Rensselaer County. We are also very pleased to announce that Patricia Donohue will join DPCA on April 8, 2004 as a Community Correction Representative II. Many of you may know Patricia. She comes to DPCA with over 15 years experience with the Albany County Probation Department. In addition, Patricia has worked in Restorative Justice at the Council of Children and Families and most recently in the grants administration unit with DCJS. Please join us in welcoming both Laura and Patricia to our staff.

A little bird told us that Warren Greene, Fulton County Probation Director’s wildlife photographs are once again being featured, this time in the April, 2004 edition of “Adirondack Life.” Director Greene has been photographing nature since 1976 and is a major contributor to VIREO, the Visual Resources for Ornithology, a centralized collection of bird photography that houses the world’s most comprehensive collection of bird slides and photos. Well done Warren!

If you have transitions to announce, forward information to be included in eFocus to Yvonne Behan at Yvonne.behan@dpca.state.ny.us.

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eFocus is the property of the NYS Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives. Articles may be reprinted with attribution to the Division. For more information on any of the topics mentioned above, to report any difficulties you may have experienced receiving this email, or, if you have information you would like posted in the next issue of DPCA's eFocus, please contact Yvonne Behan at (518) 457-5275 or at yvonne.behan@dpca.state.ny.us.

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The eFocus is now distributed to well over 3000 community corrections professionals across New York State. You may receive more than one copy if your name and email address appear on different criminal justice and community corrections mailing lists. If so, please e-mail Yvonne Behan the name you would like removed from distribution.