Wishing You a Safe and Happy Holiday Season!

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 41, December 22, 2005
NYS Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives
Robert M. Maccarone, Acting State Director
Yvonne J. Behan, Editor
Visit the DPCA website at http://www.dpca.state.ny.us

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IN THIS ISSUE. . .

1. DNA Samples collected by probation officers result in 194 “hits”
2. Training for probation officers with regard to sex offenders and employment
3. Employment Matters training coming up in Schenectady
4. Fourth new Fundamentals of Probation Practice (FPP) to be held in January 2006
5. Case Record Rule and sex offender management updates now available
6. Resources, Information and Upcoming Trainings

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1. DNA Samples collected by probation officers result in 194 “hits” - an increase of 32 “hits” since September of this year when the Acting State Director announced the 100-day strategy to eliminate the DNA sample collection backlog. Since July of 2004, probation officers have collected nearly 7,000 DNA samples from probationers, resulting in 194 “hits”. The average defendant identified through DNA sample-matching has 12 prior criminal convictions. The power of DNA, in its capacity to solve crimes and reduce victimization is unparalleled.

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2. Offender Workforce Development Specialists and Probation Officers receive training on sex offender employment issues - The Capital District Coalition for Sex Offender Management (CDCSOM) presented training on December 12th geared to the employment of sex offenders. The training, delivered by Dr. Richard Hamill, CDCSOM Project Manager, was presented to the NYS Offender Workforce Development Specialists (OWDS) team, probation officers and others working with this population. Members of the Offender Workforce Development Specialist team include Cynthia Blair (DPCA), Elaine Kost (NYSDOL), and probation officers Matt Charton from Albany County, Anna Angell Neustat from Dutchess County, Rochelle Cohen Lempert from Monroe County and Judy Sogoian from Schenectady County. Employment is a stabilizing factor for the probationer and an important tool in managing the sex offender in the community, but it also presents challenges that must be addressed. The training was held at the NYS Department of Labor, which is a partner with NYS DPCA in the employment initiative directed to the employment of probationers.

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3. Employment Matters training coming up in Schenectady - The next Employment Matters training will be held on Wednesday, January 11, 2006 from 9 am to 4:30 pm, at the Schenectady One Stop Center. “Employment Matters” is specialized training to help probation officers and other offender service providers lower recidivism by helping probationers obtain and retain quality employment. Probation officers from surrounding counties are encouraged to attend and register by contacting Cynthia Blair, DPCA Community Corrections Representative II, at (518) 457-0501 or cynthia.blair@dpca.state.ny.us.

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4. Fourth new Fundamentals of Probation Practice (FPP) to be held in January 2006 – DPCA will conduct its fourth Fundamentals of Probation Practice Training January 23rd to February 3rd in Albany. The OSST and Peace Officer training will be held February 6th -10th. The fourth FPP training session will be preceded by a three-day train-the-trainer session for all probation trainers in Westchester, Suffolk, Monroe and Nassau Counties, held January 11th -13th. In December, nine trainers (training anchors) from three of the counties observed the FPP training session. Observing the new FPP, participating in the train-the-trainers program and applying those skills at subsequent FPP sessions is the process by which DPCA is deploying the new skill-based FPP Curriculum. For more information contact Kathi Pallotta, DPCA Director of Training, at Kathi.pallotta@dpca.state.ny.us or (518) 457-4336.

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5. New in Probation Services Suite: Three new charts representing Probationer Cohort Recidivism Data for Probationer Felony Arrests Following Sentence for the period through October 31, 2005 have been placed under Statistics on the Probation Services Suite of eJusticeNY. The charts detail recidivism among felony and misdemeanor probationers for New York City, Non-New York City and Statewide Jurisdictions.

In addition, two new State Director’s Memorandum numbers #2005-09 and #2005-10 have been placed on the Suite. State Director’s Memorandum #2005-09 reports DPCA’s adoption of Emergency Case Records and Supervision Rule Amendments, effective October 25, 2005. Specifically, the case records rule has been restructured to provide greater clarity as to which probation case records must be shared and guidance to probation directors in determining the extent of information that may be shared and under what circumstances. The supervision rule also has been amended to afford probation directors the authority to establish written supervisory directives/instructions to more effectively manage probationers under supervision, increase offender accountability and promote public and victim safety.

The management of sex offenders has been addressed in State Director Policy Memorandum #2005-10 issued October 25, 2005. Accordingly, DPCA has revised the uniform electronic monitoring procedures, originally issued in 1996. The new procedure allows for the use of electronic monitoring as a condition of probation for lengthier periods of time with respect to sex offenders and other offenders than what current procedures allow. These revisions are made in order to better promote offender accountability and public/victim safety, and address the heightened sensitivity regarding sex offender management.

For more information on these new Policy updates, please visit eJusticeNY’s Probation Services Suite or contact Yvonne Behan, DPCA Community Corrections Representative II at Yvonne.behan@dpca.state.ny.us or (518) 485-5157.

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6. Resources, Information and Upcoming Trainings:

~ Domestic Violence Probation Project - Counties interested in offering probation related Domestic Violence training or requiring technical assistance on issues of domestic violence may contact Mike Thomas, Monroe County Probation Department at mthomas@monroecounty.gov.

~ NYS Probation Officer’s Association (NYSPOA) 2006 Summer Conference – August 2-4, 2006 to be held at the Crowne Plaza in Albany, NY – The NYSPOA is accepting program presentation applications for the 2006 Summer Conference. Please send your submission to cc@poa.com with the Subject Line reading - Your Name and Program Presentation Name. The submission deadline is February 1, 2006.

~ DCJS seeks applications for the federally funded Juvenile Justice & Delinquency Prevention (JJDP) Formula Grant program. Subject to State appropriation authority, approximately $3.1 million in Formula Grant funds will be available for award. Due date is 1/16/06. For further information contact Anne H. Cadwallader, NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services, Juvenile Justice Unit, Bureau of Justice Funding, Division of Criminal Justice Services, Four Tower Place, 3rd Floor, Albany, NY 12203-3764; (518) 457-4492 or go to http://www.criminaljustice.ny.gov/ofpa/downloadforms/jjformula05rfp.doc to access the full RFP.

~ DCJS has made the Sex Offender Registry Address Verification (SORA) probation caseload listings (from which the address verifications proceed) available in a modifiable, Microsoft Excel spreadsheet format. The report is accessed via the "Reports" tab of the "Probation Services" suite in eJusticeNY. From the Reports menu, select "SORA Report" - select the ORI and sort option (by Probation Officer ID# or SORA level) and press "Select". The resulting report will provide two selectable buttons at the top of the page --"Printable Version" and "Excel Version". Clicking on the "Excel Version" button results in an Excel file that can be opened on screen or downloaded and saved to a floppy diskette. Either version is completely modifiable (you will probably want to change the column widths) and sortable. Many of the departments had requested this information in Excel files, and the I-PRS team at DCJS went to great lengths to create this functionality in a very short time period. We are very appreciative of their efforts.

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eFocus is the property of DPCA. 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) 485-5157 or at yvonne.behan@dpca.state.ny.us. 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 with the name you would like removed from distribution.

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