Following the competitive application process, Wisconsin has been invited to partner with the United States Department of Justice, National Institute of Corrections (NIC) to start Phase VI of the Evidence-Based Decision Making in State and Local Criminal Justice Systems Initiative (EBDM). NIC’s EBDM initiative aims to apply “empirical knowledge and research-supported principles to justice system decisions made at the case, agency and system level and seeks to equip criminal justice local and state policymakers with the information, processes, and tools that will result in measurable reductions of pretrial misconduct, post-conviction reoffending, and other forms of community harm resulting from crime.”
Phase VI of the Initiative will build off of the collaborative planning efforts undertaken in Phase V to enable state and local teams in Wisconsin to partner in implementing evidence-based strategies to improve the criminal justice system. Working collaboratively with the state team are eight local teams – Chippewa County, Eau Claire County, La Crosse County, Marathon County, Milwaukee County, Outagamie County, Rock County, and Waukesha County. Through their local CJCCs, these local teams have also developed strong collaborative, multidisciplinary EBDM teams dedicated to these efforts. As these teams move into Phase VI of the Initiative, the work of the state team in collaboration with these local teams throughout Phase V has created a strong consortium of stakeholders moving forward toward common goals for criminal justice system improvement.
During Phase VI, Wisconsin’s EBDM teams will work to implement the goals and initiatives identified during the Phase V planning process. The state’s implementation plans are centered on three overarching goals for the criminal justice system: 1) increase public safety, reduce harm, and improve the quality of life; 2) promote fairness and equal treatment; and 3) use resources effectively. To advance these goals, the state team has developed a multi-faceted plan that will implement a variety of approaches at different decision points across the criminal justice system. These approaches and decision points include such things as creating or expanding pretrial or diversion programs, increasing the use of risk and needs assessments at different points in the system, and developing model policies and training programs for use across the state. Through this approach, the state team seeks to implement criminal justice improvements that have a true system-wide impact.
Phase VI will began November 1, 2016 and will be initially be supported by NIC through December 2017.