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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Julie L. Jones

Florida Department of Corrections
Julie L. Jones, Secretary

Issue 5: Develop Partnerships with Public and Private Agencies to Further Accomplish the Department's Mission

GOAL: To enhance quality alliances and collaborations with communities as well as public and private sector organizations that promote public safety and prevention of crime.

Progress Achieved

To meet its mission and ongoing challenge of statewide public safety and quality of life within our communities, the department continues to forge working partnerships with institutions of higher education, local and state agencies, and community service organizations. Mutually beneficial partnerships and collaborations include numerous prevention and intervention initiatives. Our partnerships often involve multiple state agencies and community organizations. Examples include programs such as the Partners in Excellence prevention initiative, the federally funded Even Start Program for inmates and their children, the Tour Program for court ordered juveniles operating in 21 correctional facilities, and the Community Correction's One-Stop Programs which are collaborative relationships with Workforce Development Boards statewide and serve as community transition programs.

The department's Innovative Partnerships and Community Linkage Initiatives program has continued to grow. The department published and update of Innovative Partnerships and Community Linkage Initiatives in October of 1997. This publication detail the numerous community partnerships throughout the state focusing on public safety and the reduction of crime and costs associated with incarceration.

The primary progress in the funding partnerships area is the planning and development of a grants tracking system. When implemented the database will facilitate the identification of potential partnerships, track the success of funding requests and evaluate the outcomes of projects.

Objective 5-1:

By June 30, 2002, 100% of the department's partnerships will produce results stated in the individual partnership agreements and meet the criteria established in the department's partnership directive and local agreements.

Performance Assessment
  • Formal criteria were developed for the evaluation of partnerships.

  • Staff training of senior managers on the development and refinement of effective partnerships was initiated throughout the state.

  • Building Family Ties Grant: Grant funding was awarded to us from the Florida Department of Children and Families . This funding provides the opportunity to develop and deliver parenting classes to women. ESUBA: The contract with ESUBA, Inc. that provided educational programs to female offenders, who were victims of domestic violence and abuse, was canceled. A new contract with the Florida State University is being negotiated to continue this service.

  • A joint resolution was signed on April 22, 1998 with Mr. David Armstrong, Division of Community Colleges, Dr. Adam Hulbert, Chancellor, University System, and Mr. Harry K. Singletary, Jr., Secretary. The ceremony acted at the kick-off for the distribution of the video tapes produced by DC ("Behind the Gate: The Role of the Correctional Officer" and "Under the Watchful Eye" The Role of the Correctional Probation Officer") to all community colleges and universities throughout the state. This event was conducted to promote the existing partnership DC has with Community Colleges and Universities. Also, the distribution of the video tapes highlights the student volunteer/intern opportunities and student employment opportunities available with the department to students and faculty members.

  • We have established secure and non-secure diversionary beds. We have 10 probation & restitution centers - 2 contracted. These and similar programs are seeking funds for expansion through a legislative budget request and grant funding. This is an on-going effort.

  • A partnership was developed with the Department of Elder Affairs that provides services to elder inmates when released. We will continue getting up-to-date information regarding new programs and other community resources for elder inmates. This information will be included in the transitional program that is given to inmate upon their release. A representative from the Department of Elder Affairs is on our Planning Committee for the Elderly.

  • The Extended Day Program has within it, a block of two hours for evening programs. Using volunteers uses these hours to create opportunities for partnerships that will enhance programs for the youthful offenders. Partnerships with school systems were developed where inmates within Youthful Offender Extended Day Program share their life experiences with school children in an effort to deter them from crime. The transition program provides direction for program treatment opportunities in the community while under supervision.

  • We have many contracts and partnerships directed at reducing substance abuse dependency among the supervised population. This is an on-going initiative.

  • The Chaplaincy program trained several new volunteers and several church rallies were based on the theme "What can the local church do to combat recidivism." Chaplaincy Services also arranged for "The Starting Line", A Prison Fellowship ministry, in all Region II correctional institutions.

    Limited progress was made in expanding the Partners in Excellence statewide.

    Nine (9) DC employees in Community Corrections in Circuit 2 are involved in student tutoring through the Partnerships in Excellence program at the Nims Middle School. These employees donate one hour per week tutoring these students.

  • In Region 1 preliminary contacts were made with local school districts to identify contacts for the Dropout Program and potential contributions of Region I Staff to the school dropout reduction effort. Estimated dated of completion of the regional plan is December 1998.

  • In Region 2 the majority of the facilities and all probation and parole circuits are actively involved in partnerships with the community groups that specifically address at risk youth. While local school boards are targeted, in most areas, the school board joins with local law enforcement, state attorneys, and community action groups to address "at-risk" as an entity for concern by all.

  • Region 3 institutions and circuits provide mentoring programs and public speaking at various schools throughout the region. There are no official plans in writing with all local school boards but numerous activities take place between our staff and local schools. Our DC films are shown from time to time at various schools throughout the region. We frequently participate in job fairs at high schools. We accept fairly numerous public speaking engagements at local schools addressing all ages of elementary school children.

    Region 4 is extensively involved in the effort to reduce the dropout of at-risk youth. In Broward County the region has established mentor programs with five elementary or middle schools. In Dade County there is tremendous mentor program involvement with 15 elementary or middle schools and one high school. In Martin and St. Lucie Counties, mentor programs were established with one high school, three elementary or middle schools, the St. Lucie County Explorers, the Big Brother/Sister programs, and the Boys and Girls Club of Ft. Pierce.

  • In Region 5 all institutions and field offices have and will continue to work with schools in an effort to promote education and prevent "at risk" youth from dropping out. Region 5 staff have participated in job fairs, career days, teach-ins, volunteer tutoring and mentoring programs, HOSTS (Help One Student To Succeed), as well as, presentations to special needs students. Court-ordered juvenile tours are also conducted at a number of institutions.

  • Reading Family Ties Grant: Grant funding was awarded to us from the Commission on Responsible Fatherhood. Ten male correctional institutions and 1,000 male inmates will be identified to improve contact between them and their children. Appropriate community partnerships will be established through the Foundation for Partnerships in Correctional Excellence.

  • Through the federal Even Start grant program, 150 female inmates and their children participated in family literacy activities in Broward, Dade and Marion Counties.

  • Development of Operational Plan for Student Volunteer/Intern Partnership Program was completed and will be distributed to Regional Offices and other staff throughout the state.

    Internship programs are already in place within Region 4 and various local schools are participating such as: FIU, FAU, Florida Memorial, BCC, FAMU, University of Florida, Florida State University of Miami.

  • A new operational manual of procedures for Probation and Restitution Centers is currently being drafted. New partnerships are being pursued.

  • The usage of drug courts has increased. There are 16 adult drug courts in Florida in 14 circuits.

  • The Tour Program, for court ordered juveniles, is operating in 21 facilities. Information on the program was sent to all Chief Circuit Judges. Staff is visiting circuits with little participation and information about the program is provided directly to the juvenile court. Over 6,000 juveniles have participated in the program and we are presently measuring the impact that the Tour Program is having on the re-arrest of those juveniles that participate in the program.

  • We worked with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) to create an electronic file transfer process, using FTP, to transfer information related to sex offenders, sex predators and certain types of early release cases. The process was operational October 1, 1997. This information is used by FDLE to update their sex offender registry and early release web applications.

  • There are ongoing partnerships in each judicial circuit with local law enforcement to enhance public safety. This initiative is on going.

  • Community Corrections inmates on work release use the One Stop Program to enhance employment opportunity.

  • Due to the One-Stop Center concept, the department is developing collaborative relationships with Workforce Development Boards statewide. The statewide boards have been establishing partnership relationships with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation.

  • Community Residential Programs uses Transition, Inc. for inmates, which links to Voc-Rehab.

Objective 5-2:

By June 30, 2001, strengthen partnerships with state agencies, clerks of the court, sentencing judges, and other criminal justice agencies that result in timely, accurate, and complete sentencing guidelines scoresheets, as measured by results of annual reports.

Performance Assessment
  • Effective October 1, 1998 the sentencing guidelines are being replaced by the criminal punishment code on. It remains optional as to whether the department completes the "scoresheet" or whether the State Attorney does; we do about 25%. We continue to audit all "scoresheets" for correct data entry and are quite accurate statewide, less than 3% error rate in critical areas.

  • In most judicial circuits our field offices have direct access to local criminal justice information systems, where prior records can be thoroughly verified, through local clerk's offices and law enforcement records.

  • The referral process for the department to prepare sentencing guidelines scoresheets is working well in all circuits that prepares "scoresheets."

  • Measuring the level of satisfaction of the courts regarding the accuracy, completeness, and delivery of the department's prepared sentencing guidelines scoresheets is done annually. The report is made public on our website.

Objective 5-3:

By June 30, 2000, the department will expand the utilization of the Community Work Squad Program to 75% of the department's institution over the 1993-94 participation level of 61% of the department's facilities.

Performance Assessment
  • Coordinating and providing inmate labor for public work projects is an on-going activity and is influenced by the addition of new correctional facilities and each facility's mission. Currently 81 facilities participate in the Community Work Squad Program. This represents 67% of our facilities participating in the community work squad program. This objective was modified in the ASP for 1998-2003 and reads as follows: By December 31, 2003, increase by 10% the number of facilities participating in the Community Work Squad Program over the current level of 80 of the department's facilities.

Objective 5-4:

By the year 2000, increase by 300% the number of contracts with the private sector to provide prison based industry programs from a baseline of two (2) programs.

Performance Assessment
  • Our goal for this objective was a 300% increase in the number of contracts by the year 2000. Currently, contracts were increased by 150%.

  • Community Residential Services is working with local CCC staff to increase the average dollar amount earned by inmates on work release.

  • Three additional institutions have PIE programs. These include South Bay, Moore Haven, and Hardee Correctional Institute. The companies recruited include U.S. Technologies which is a cut and sew operation at South Bay and Moore Haven which provides for 10 jobs at each of these institutions, and Maven Manufacturing at Hardee which is an upholstery furniture operation will provide 30 jobs for inmates. This operation is planned to employ a total of 200 inmates in four years.

  • Community Residential Programs has a pre-work release program to prepare inmates for work release and transition into the community.

Objective 5-5:

By June 30, 1998, to achieve quality and cost benefits for health services to inmates, the department will identify, coordinate, develop, implement, and evaluate 100% of the Health Services partnership initiatives.

Performance Assessment
  • We have defined criteria for successful health services partnerships. These criteria include environment, membership characteristics, process/structure, communication, purpose, and resources.

  • The evaluation of new partnerships is on going. As new health services requirements emerge then an identification of both existing and new potential partnerships to meet these needs is part of the management process. Several of the partnerships that are evaluated on an annual basis are noted in the Department Annual Report FY 1996-97.

Objective 5-6:

By 2000, increase mutually beneficial partnerships with educational and vocational training institutions and other public and private organizations by 50% above the baseline number of 6 partnerships in effect on June 30, 1996.

Performance Assessment
  • 18 partnerships established, a 200% increase. Formal criteria for partnership evaluation were developed.

  • We have not reached a stage of performance excellence to make national benchmarking appropriate at this time.

  • Limited progress was made on partnership training and communications networks.

  • Facilitating a national corrections partnership program information exchange network is still in the developmental stages.

  • We continue to make contact with institutions of higher learning to develop partnerships.
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