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A New Approach to Reducing Re-offending

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Presentation on theme: "A New Approach to Reducing Re-offending"— Presentation transcript:

1 A New Approach to Reducing Re-offending
Presented by Steve Hall Director Reducing Re-offending Reintegration Puzzle Conference

2 Ever hear about desistance from crime?
August 2003 ,UK 74 % reconviction of offenders who were released from custody or who started a community penalty between January and March 2000 were reconvicted within nine years. Article concludes “It means the majority of offenders are never rehabilitated.”

3 Re-offending in New Zealand
Two lines show rate of reimprisonment up to See that at 12 months 26% are reimprisoned ( this figure rose to 27.6 in 2012) and is predicted to be 27.0 % this last reporting year. 24 months 37% etc.

4 And desistance... This graph shows same time frame but gives the percentage of individuals NOT re-imprisoned SO the higher the figure the better the result. SO at 12 months 73% of the population had not been re-imprisoned. Can see clearly differences by age ( for over 40 years 71% are not re-imprisoned after 3 years compared with just 34% for youth. It takes just 15 months to re-imprison half of all youth released from custody.

5 No simple definition of recidivism
Ad hoc measurement. Remarkable inconsistency of approach. Different definitions applied in different contexts. Measured in different ways. Different measures being compared as if same. (Maltz 1984).

6 Recidivism increasing
In 2011 in the UK: More offenders have previous history of offending (90%). A third committed or linked to 15+ crimes. 46% of imprisoned had 15+ crimes. % imprisoned offenders. “Ministry of Justice officials say the figures show a "clear trend" of a rising re-offending rate”. BBC News Report 24 May 2012 .

7 Recidivism decreasing
However of the 2011 cohort: Proven re-offending rate %. Increased 0.6 percentage points in 12 months. Fall of 0.7 percentage points since 2000. More likely to re-offend than 2000 cohort. After controlling for offender characteristics, this is a decrease of 3.1 percentage points. So you get 2010 = 24.9% 2011 =25.5% But 2000 was 28.6%

8 So why so much variation?
Context is critical: The target group. The event/events used to indicate the occurrence of re-offending, and the source of the information. The time period over which the indicator events are observed and counted. Recidivism in Australia Payne J, Australian institute of Criminology

9 Measurement is complex
Event inside 12 months Waiting period Up to 24 months Proven conviction outside 24 months don't count Only convictions count Ministry of Justice UK: Proven re-offending statistics: definitions and measurement. October 2012 Only first conviction counts

10 Thinking differently? Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.  ~F. Scott Fitzgerald It is a mistake to suppose that people succeed through success; they often succeed through failures.  ~Anon

11 Comparing (re-offending) rates
Cohorts are based on groups taken between 2008 and No guarantee that there is a like for like comparison here. Likelihood is that NZ rates are actually (Comparatively) higher than shown here. Al three UK jurisdictions use different measurement methodologies Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research 2012

12 Is change happening? Two in every three prisoners will have been previously imprisoned. 25% of prisoners reconvicted within three months of being released. 25 -30% of prisoners reimprisoned within one year of release. Recidivism rates been consistent over time.

13 A (new) New Zealand approach
“The average number of days spent out of custody in the 12 months following release from prison.” The Out of Custody Index (OCI) Overview of the measure - what we are proposing and why, explain how it fits in with the Department's strategic vision Driven by Serco and supported by the Dept (FYI - Adrian is a contractor for the Dept, but Serco paid his fees on this) Satisfies contractual requirements Presents the following innovation and contributes to our existing measure

14 A very different approach
Includes everyone in custody - “social impact”. Uses IOMS data - providing “real time” information. Incentive to work with all prisoners – no “failure point”. Work starts prior to any conviction. Alternative (out of the box) solutions. Amount of “failures” less significant. Positive measure encourages “strengths” based practice. Positive improvements have (realisable) $ value.

15 Simple business rules IOMS data. Prison releases.
Minimum (initially 42 days) continuous custody. Death, deportation and extradition only exclusions. Multiple prison releases included. Natural exclusions will continue to occur eg temporary residents and dual nationals travelling overseas. Believed to be a current counting error in NZ. Of course if yu are not caught you will be excluded – sae o=under any measure.

16 Early development phases
Several other prison sites and combinations considered. Normalising populations by risk, release type, age, prison duration failed to produce a valid match. Normalising by risk makes logical sense, but risk measure is not yet complete.

17 Outcome of Development
Early findings: No “equivalent” direct comparison group. Significant regional influence causing increased remand times for Auckland Courts. ROC*ROI is not available nor accurate for all prisoners on their date of release. Possibility of comparing against “whole population”.

18 New Zealand prison releases (sentenced)
7493 Small number of Sentenced releases from MECF. Whether prisoners is released as a sentence prisoner or not can often be arbitrary – for example high number of releases on day of sentence. 679

19 New Zealand prison releases (remand)
7259 Remand Prisoners not included in RI index but represent about half of all releases. 2357

20 Final measurement design
Reference group will always be different but provide benchmark. Normalising results by risk banding ( ROC*ROI) will improve over time. The release population from MECF is significantly different than any other prison and the whole population. Even after scaling by risk and other factors still see a gap based largely on remand duration.

21 RI and CI release populations compared
2011/2012 The Department of Correctionss RI measure uses a different population to Serco MECF’s reference group measure. Of the 988 in the reference group only 387 are measured in the RI index. CI population is reduced by introducung 42 day exclusion – could be increased.

22 Cohort size and impact (MECF)
The cohort group is reduced by a further 12.5% because prisoners who are not continually in custody are excluded.

23 Timeframes Measurement period Serco year 1 measure
July 2010 – June 2011 releases Serco year 2 measure July 2011 – June 2012 Measurement period Serco year 3 measure Measurement period Jul 2012 – Jun 2013 Serco year 4 measure Measurement period July 2013 – June 2014 July 2014 – June 2015 Measurement period Measurement period July 2015 – June 2016 Main point about time frames is that measurement actaully occurs in or close to the performance year. July 2015 – June 2016 Serco started management at MECF from September 2011 Serco begin performance measurement from July 2013 Target 25% reduction expected in 2016/17 Annual Report

24 Measurement validity Designed to be a ”proxy” measure.
Re-imprisonment (or not) is an event that is determined by the state’s actions, systems and processes. Connected to recidivism or re-offending but not the same. Amount of time an individual is able to “avoid” custody immediately post release is a very strong ‘indicator’ of desistance.

25 OCI rates OCI rates are actually behaving as predicted – crime and prosecutions are falling so there should be a similar impact on Recidivism rates. Compare with Next slide which has RI rates. Scaled represents adjustments to measure to take account of movements in risk banding

26 Current RI rates in New Zealand
Note reversed scale. Reoffending rates ( as measured by re-imprisonment ) RED LINE have not changed at all over the period. Improvement that occurred in first half of 2010 was lost in second half. Improvement in MECF ( pink) needs to be seen in context of sample size relatively small ( as previously shown this is around 400 prisoners ) April

27 Comparing OCI with RI RI OCI July Limit of RI data

28 Measuring performance improvement
Serco and Corrections baselines will be measured from July 2011 – June 2012 release period. July 2008 Using results from 2010/2011 releases we can see MECF at 296, and the Department of Corrections at 315 days out of custody.

29 From 1 July 2013 Serco MECF started reporting performance based on the OCI measure. First time in the world that a “distance travelled” approach has been used to measure recidivism. MECF aims to increase the average post custody release period by three days per annum for the next four years. Twelve days increase in OCI is equivalent to a 25% reduction in re-offending rates for the target group.

30 Outcomes – All prisoners

31 Outcomes - Māori

32 Outcomes - compared All prisoners Māori
Both these charts show the Department on track to meet its 25% target using POCI as an approach. Serco has some real challenges to address the decline in outcomes for Maori. Māori

33 Impact of cohort type on OCI
OCI is in theory all prison releases. Chosen to use a 42 day qualifier. Logical reasons of this around cause and effect – is possible to use a shorter time frame. Interesting results…..

34 Using the tool analyse trends

35 OCI compared 10 years

36 But over 2-3 years

37 Introducing court comparison

38 Conclusions (1) Any measure of recidivism will have limitations – most have lots. Current measures of recidivism ignore remand prisoners (half of all prison releases). Fergus McNeil suggests we should not make choices on the basis of re-offending alone, since this tells us little about the long-term prospects – new offending might actually be part of this longer term change.

39 Conclusions (2) Measuring “success” (time not offending) might help increase it. Current measures of recidivism are just too slow to provide information that we can usefully act upon. The cost of crime and the visibility on this are important drivers for change (and investment in better solutions). Measuring success is an important motivator for staff and prisoners.

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