Welcome to eFocus, an electronic newsletter produced by the NYS Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives.  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.  

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

eFocus, Issue Number 7, March 3, 2003
NYS Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives
Sara Tullar Fasoldt, State Director
Robert Maccarone, Executive Deputy Director
http://dpca.state.ny.us

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

1.   Important Dates to Remember!!!

PROBER User meetings are scheduled for March 5th and 6th.  Both meetings will include Terry Carpenter, President of QC Microsystems (PROBER vendor), and will address recent updates to the PROBER software, plans for future changes to PROBER, questions and answers about the software, and setting up user group committees to provide recommendations for future system enhancements.  The Wednesday, March 5 th meeting will be held in the fourth floor Training Room at DPCA at 80 Wolf Road in Albany from 10 am to 1:00 pm. The second meeting will be held Thursday, March 6th in Ontario County.  This meeting will be held in room 204 of the Human Resource Building, 3019 County Complex Drive, Canandaigua, NY from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm. All Probation Departments are invited to attend either of the two meetings.

Automation Project for Large County Probation Departments.

Kick-off meetings for the new project to develop a large-county case management system have been scheduled.  The first meeting was held on February 27 in Westchester County and the second kick-off meeting will be held on March 6th in Ontario County beginning at 1:30 pm.  Probation departments are invited to attend either of the two meetings.  This project is a joint effort between DCJS and DPCA, with the goal of developing a system that will meet the needs of large county probation departments.  The meetings will include the development of an RFP. 

Please contact Patricia Eglintine at DPCA at 518-485-2393 or peglintine@dpca.state.ny.us to RSVP for all meetings mentioned above or for more information.  

Management Skills for Supervisors will be held in Buffalo on March 11th and 12th. Please contact DPCA Community Corrections Representative Pat Butler at 518-485-5158 or pbutler@dpca.state.ny.us for additional information.

Mental Health Focus Groups will be conducted in Utica on March 4 and in New York City on March 11.  Contact Valerie Chakedis 518-402-6376 or vchakedis@omh.ny.gov for further information.

Executive Leadership Training will take place in White Plains on Friday, March 7th and in Syracuse on March 24th and 25th, in Bath on March 26th and in Buffalo on March 27th and 28th.   Please contact Steve Powers at (518) 485-5149 or powers@dpca.state.ny.us for more information.

Fundamentals of Probation Practice.   On Monday, February 24th, 35 probation officers from across New York State began their 1st week of the required 2 week curriculum.  The 2nd week of training is scheduled for the week beginning March 17th.   Both take place in the training room located at DPCA in Albany.  Please contact Steve Powers at (518) 485-5149 or powers@dpca.state.ny.us for more information.

Automating the Pre-Dispositional Investigation (PDI) and Report.  DPCA, Orbis Partners, and representatives from several local departments, as well as representatives from DCJS and OCFS met for a working session on February 28 th at DPCA to discuss using results from the Youth Assessment and Screening instrument to generate a draft pre-dispositional investigation (PDI) and report.  This enhancement to the YASI (Youth Assessment Screening Instrument) software customization will be incorporated in the next version of the software. For more information contact Norma Tyler at DPCA at tyler@dpca.state.ny.us or (518) 485-5160.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

2.   Probation vital link in collecting DNA samples.    There are 818 "hits" against the DNA Databank Convicted Offender Index, 59 of those included individuals who were currently under probation supervision.   Two individuals under probation supervision, one from Chautaugua county and the other from Onondaga county, were recently convicted of two high profile "stranger rapes."  The convictions were due in part to probation staff being diligent in their collection of samples from DNA designated offenders.  This type of cooperation is still needed.  The NYS Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) asks that all local Probation Departments cooperate in ensuring that DNA samples are collected as soon after sentencing as possible.  The current processing time of DNA samples from submission to the lab to entry into the Databank is approximately 30 days.  Expedient identification of DNA Designated Offenders, collection and analysis of their DNA samples, directly enhances public safety.  Please review your procedures regarding screening of intake cases to ensure designated offenders are being identified and scheduled for a collection at one of their first visits with probation officers.  The web address for the DNA Databank is http://www.criminaljustice.ny.gov/forensic/dnabrochure.htm. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the DNA Databank, please contact Julie Pasquini, the DCJS DNA Databank Coordinator at pasquini@dcjs.ny.gov.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

3.  Restitution reaches crime victims.   Last year, probation departments throughout New York State collected over $6.5 million in victim restitution payments.  This money is used to provide substantial financial reparation to victims of crime and their families. 

During the week of April 6th, crime victims, service providers, criminal and juvenile justice professionals and community volunteers will join to commemorate the 23rd anniversary of national Crime Victims Rights Week.

For a listing of Victim Assistance Programs in your area, visit the NYS Crime Victims Board website at http://www.ovs.ny.gov.  The New York State Crime Victims Board toll free umber is 1-800-247-8035 or TTY: 1-888-289-9747.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

4.   OTDA, Probation and Child Support "Partners for Children."  Child support payments, in addition to being a court ordered obligation, can also have a profound effect on offender behavior.  Offenders who have stronger social ties and are focused on parenting are less likely to be re-arrested.  DPCA and the NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance have collaborated to address the needs of children and families in the context of community corrections.  The agencies will host a teleconference on March 18th, entitled "Partners for Children."  The teleconference will include remarks from the State's Director of Criminal Justice and Commissioner of DCJS, Chauncey Parker;  DPCA State Director, Sara Fasoldt; OTDA Commissioner, Brian Wing; and the new Dean of Criminal Justice at SUNY at Albany, Julie Horney.   Viewing sites will be located at county Departments of Social Services.  For more information, please contact Bernard Wilson, TANF Project Coordinator at (518) 485-5137 or bwilson@dpca.state.ny.us

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

5.  Sex Offender Management Work Group.   DPCA has convened a work group of probation department representatives to address Sex Offender Management.  The workgroup's first meeting was held on February 26th.  Supervision classification and the importance of confirming the address of the offender were also discussed.  The group will establish an electronic discussion list (listserve) to facilitate broad discussion of relevant issues.  The next meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, April 9th.  For additional information please contact Mark Connors, DPCA Community Corrections Representative at (518) 485-5157 or connors@dpca.state.ny.us.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

6.  Welcome to the "Community Corrections Club." Thanks to Dawn Hawley at the Dutchess County Probation and Community Corrections office we can share the following information about promotions:  Dan Bryant, Barbara Schumacher, Karen DeSimone and Pam Francis were all appointed Senior Probation Officers and Nick Ignaffo was appointed Unit Administrator. Congratulations and welcome new hire in Dutchess County - Judith Desaye. 

Over in Chautauqua County, Director Mike Ricketts reports that William (Willie) Rivera has been appointed to the position of Probation Officer Trainee/ Spanish Speaking and LeeAnn Lararony was appointed as a Probation Assistant.

DPCA will publish the names of new hires, and promotions in your department or organization since January 1, 2003. Please send the names and titles directly to Yvonne Behan at ybehan@dpca.state.ny.us

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

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 ybehan@dpca.state.ny.us.

####

Yvonne J. Behan
Community Corrections Representative
NYS Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives
80 Wolf Road
Albany, New York  12205
(518) 457-5275

ybehan@dpca.state.ny.us