Welcome to eFocus, an electronic newsletter produced by the NYS Division of Probation and Correctional Alternatives (DPCA). DPCA publishes this newsletter to further its goal of promoting public safety through probation services and other community corrections programs. We welcome your suggestions.
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eFocus, Issue Number 74, March 3, 2009
NYS Office of Probation and Correctional Alternatives
Robert M. Maccarone, State Director
Thomas H. Slater, Executive Deputy Director
William M. Schaefer, Jr., Editor
http://dpca.state.ny.us

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In this Issue:

1. DPCA Awards Grants to Seven ATI/Reentry Programs
2. 2009 Offender Workforce Development Specialist (OWDS)Training
3. NYS OSOM Presents Training “Managing Sex Offenders in the Community”
4. Caseload Explorer Version 3.11.10 Offers Enhanced Functionality
5. New Initiative “Operation Return” Directs the Apprehension of Sex Offender Probation Absconders
6. Awards, Events and News
7. Quick Facts

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1. DPCA Awards Grant to Seven ATI/Reentry Programs – DPCA received a total of 40 proposals in response to its Request for Proposals for Alternatives to Incarceration/Reentry Programs and will fund the top seven scoring programs. These innovative programs will provide services to persons in the criminal justice system who are chemically dependent as well as those who are suffering from mental illness. The programs provide expanded job training and placement, transitional housing, case management services and help connect qualified individuals to mentoring. The seven programs to receive funding are the Center for Community Alternatives - Onondaga County; the Cattaraugus County Department of Probation; the Center for Employment Opportunities – Westchester County; Fortune Society; EAC TASC – Bronx and Kings Counties; and CASES – Center for Alternative Sentencing and Employment Services, Inc. – NYC. The programs received grants of up to $200,000 and will commence services March 1, 2009.

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2. 2009 Offender Workforce Development Specialist (OWDS)Training – DPCA, in conjunction with the NYS Department of Labor (DOL) and County Probation Departments, will conduct another round of the National Institute of Correction’s (NIC), Offender Workforce Development Specialist training. DPCA was certified by the NIC in 2008, to deliver this nationally-recognized 180-hour program. This year’s training will include two representatives from each of DPCA’s seven newly funded ATI/Re-entry Programs. The OWDS Training will also be offered to County Probation Departments and Community Corrections Programs. In 2008, 24 probation and community correction professionals were certified in the OWDS Curriculum and probation officers are currently convening Ready, Set, Work! (RSW) groups with probationers in their respective communities. The training is free of cost, but lodging, meals and travel are the responsibility of the participating agency. There are a limited number of scholarships for lodging available. This year’s training is scheduled for April 27-May 1; June 15-19; and August 3-6 and will be held in Albany. If you are interested in becoming a certified Offender Workforce Development Specialist, please contact Cynthia Blair at Cynthia.Blair@dpca.state.ny.us or (518) 485-5162.

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3. NYS OSOM Presents Training “Managing Sex Offenders in the Community” – The State’s Office of Sex Offender Management (OSOM) has arranged for a noted specialist in sex offender management training, Georgia F. Cumming, to present a program on Friday, March 13, 2009 in Hudson, New York. This training is designed for probation officers with sex offender caseloads. The training will focus on the differences and similarities among sex offenders, matching probation strategies to offender risk levels, working collaboratively with treatment providers and defining collaborative networks. Georgia F. Cumming is the Program Director of the Vermont Department of Corrections’ integrated network of sex offender treatment programs. Formerly a probation and parole officer, Ms. Cumming has worked in the field of sex offender management for over 25 years, and co-authored the first edition of Supervision of the Sex Offender. Registration and resources will be available at 8:00 AM on March 13th. Training will commence promptly at 9:00 AM and run through 4:30 PM. For registration information, please go to http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=TGWHAob6zLpZcdDjh3FZ1A_3d_3d. Confirmation, directions and a link to download participant materials will be sent upon acceptance.

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4. Caseload Explorer Version 3.11.10 Offers Enhanced Functionality – The newest release of Caseload Explorer (CE) is scheduled for March 2009, and will feature the first of 24 new "canned" management reports. The management reports are designed specifically to assist probation officers and supervisors. The new CE release will also include two important program interfaces: one with the Youth Assessment and Screening Instrument (YASI), and one with the statewide Integrated Probation Registrant System (I-PRS). Although the Caseload Explorer Program includes powerful features for managing caseloads, the new reports will provide all professional staff with readily available information at the caseload, unit and organizational levels. The interface with YASI will allow probation officers to call-up and complete YASI assessments, pre-filling the legal history grid, without leaving the CE function and starting-up a separate YASI program. The interface with I-PRS will provide for automatic exchange of required data with the I-PRS system when a new adult probation case is added, modified, closed and a violation of probation is filed. The I-PRS interface is also being developed to provide large non-Caseload Explorer departments (Westchester, New York City, and Orange) with that same capability. This new functionality will provide new efficiencies for staff and result in the storage of more accurate and complete data.

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5. New Initiative “Operation Return” Directs the Apprehension of Sex Offender Probation Absconders – In October of 2008, DPCA requested that Probation Departments provide detailed information concerning SORA Level 2 and 3 Probation Absconders in an effort to prepare for Operation Return. In January of 2009, DPCA, in collaboration with DCJS, the NY/NJ HIDTA Regional Intelligence Center, the US Marshal’s Service and local probation departments, commenced this nationwide initiative to apprehend nearly 100 sex offender probation absconders. Central to this effort is state aid funding provided to probation departments through the Enhanced Supervision of Sex Offenders (ESSO) Program. These funds are targeted to the investigation, supervision and management of probation’s 1,500 SORA Level 2 and 3 Sex Offenders. During SFY 2008/09, DPCA extended the use of these state funds to support the costs associated with apprehending Level 2 and 3 probation absconders. DPCA is pleased to announce that the Steuben County Sheriff’s Office traveled to North Carolina to expedite the return of a SORA Level 3 Probation Absconder and return him to the Steuben County Court for arraignment. Operation Return continues and the US Marshals are making excellent progress in locating this population. For additional information concerning Operation Return, please contact Gary Govel at Gary.Govel@dpca.state.ny.us or (518) 457-4336.

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6. Awards, Events and News

~ The Probation Executive Leadership Program for new Probation Directors is scheduled for April 21-22, 2009 at 80 Wolf Road in Albany, NY. This is required training for all new Probation Directors. For additional information, please contact Kathi Pallotta at Kathi.Pallotta@dpca.state.ny.us or call (518) 485-5157.

~ The DPCA Training Unit has announced the dates for the next Fundamentals of Probation Practice Course to be held in Albany, NY. The Officer Safety and Survival Training and Peace Officer Supplements will be conducted May 11-15, 2009; FPP will be held June 1-5, and June 8-12, 2009. For additional information, please contact Kathi Pallotta at Kathi.Pallotta@dpca.state.ny.us or call (518) 485-5157.

~ The DWI List-Serve for NYS County Probation Departments is a resource available to all NYS county probation departments. Thirty-five (35) probation departments are currently enrolled and utilizing this great tool for asking questions, sharing or obtaining information, conducting surveys or issuing announcements. The List-Serve is maintained and operated by Broome County STOP-DWI, Jim May, Coordinator. To join the List-Serve, send your name and departmental address via e-mail to Ron Bergstrom at Ron.Bergstrom@dpca.state.ny.us or call (518) 485-9941 for additional details.

~ “The DC Sniper: The Domestic Violence Story Behind the Killings” is a half-day domestic violence training program where Mildred Muhammad will recount her harrowing experiences as a survivor of domestic violence, recalling those weeks in October 2002. This program will highlight the hidden nature of domestic violence and the importance of ensuring that criminal justice professionals screen all cases for this critical issue. Joining Mrs. Muhammad in a panel discussion will be Amy Barasch, Esq., Executive Director of the NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and a representative from the NYS Integrated Domestic Violence Court. This program will be held at the Beltrone Living Center in Albany, NY on March 27, 2009 from 8:00 to 12:00. Registration is $25.00 and includes a hot breakfast. This event is sponsored by the Capital District Coalition for Crime Victims’ Rights and made possible by a grant from the Office for Victims of Crime, Training & Technical Assistance Center. For additional information please contact Karen Szubinski at (518) 886-0200 Ext.150 or Karen.Szubinski.ctr@navy.mil

~ Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) Training Series: Juveniles Who Sexually Offend – Probation Officers supervise nearly 500 juveniles who have sexually offended. The research indicates that intervening early in the cycle of sex offending behavior offers the greatest promise of effectuating change. David Prescott, LCSW, Clinical Director of the Minnesota Sex Offender Program and current President of ATSA will provide training on March 9th in Owego and March 10th in Niagara. Steven Bengis, Ed.D., Founder and Executive Director of the New England Adolescent Research Institute, will provide training on March 17th in New York City and March 18th in Poughkeepsie. Registration starts at 8:00AM and the program runs from 9:00AM to 4:30PM. (Lunch is on your own.) Please visit http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=Mpfj_2fd3DXpA8NWuolBs6cA_3d_3d or call (518) 457-5628.

~ John Jay College has launched a new one-stop website www.TheCrimeReport.org The Crime Report is a unique news and multimedia information and networking resource for the changing contemporary world of crime and justice. Designed for those who want to probe beyond the daily crime headlines and political rhetoric, it is the nation’s only comprehensive guide to all facets of the criminal justice system.

~ The Public Policy Committee of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) has drafted three Public Policy Briefs that probation departments and other practitioners may find helpful: Sex Offender Registration & Notification; Sex Offender Residence Restrictions; Sex Offender Treatment for Adult Males available at https://www.atsa.com/pubPBriefs.html. Each policy brief consists of (a) a two-page overview highlighting key points on a particular topic, (b) a short bibliography related to the topic and (c) links to key research articles available for download from the ATSA website.

~ The New York State Sheriffs’ Association Institute, Inc. presents the Third Annual New York Statewide Conference on VINE on May 1, 2009 at the Holiday Inn on Wolf Road in Albany, NY. Three workshop tracks are being offered this year: Probation and VINE; Domestic Violence and VINE; and, Law enforcement and VINE. The registration fee is $45 and includes a continental breakfast, breaks and networking lunch. To register, please contact Irene Colwill at icolwill@nysheriffs.org. The registration deadline is April 17, 2009.

~ Suffolk County Probation Officers took part in a successful operation last week with the Suffolk County Police Department under Operation IMPACT. In response to a house burglary in which a safe containing four weapons was stolen, police contacted the Suffolk County Probation Field Intelligence Officer and provided information identifying a probationer as a person of interest. The probationer was subject to a “no weapons” condition and a team was formed to conduct a search. The probation/police team found the empty safe on the property along with enough information to allow Suffolk County Police to secure a Search Warrant for the entire residence. The joint operation resulted in the arrest of six suspects, the recovery of all four stolen weapons, and the discovery of three additional weapons.

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7. Quick Facts: A recent I-PRS report indicated there are 3,817 Interim Probation Supervision cases among 130,534 probation cases registered statewide.

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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 Bill Schaefer at (518) 485-5158 or Bill.Schaefer@dpca.state.ny.us.

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The eFocus is now distributed to thousands of 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 Bill Schaefer the name you would like removed from distribution.