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August 7, 2006

NASC conference theme: evidence-based sentencing decision-making

Kudos to the folks involved with the NASC conference (basics here and here).  A consistent theme throughout the presentations was the opportunities for, and values of, an informed "evidence-based" approach to sentencing and corrections.  And, after a terrifically thoughtful day with all sort of interesting sentencing dialogues, today finished with a terrific dinner at the impressive National Constitution Center. 

Along with all the revelry, a dinner highlight was a presentation from folks involved with The Pew Charitable Trust's new initiative on public safety and corrections.  As detailed here, the Pew project has noble goals:

The project has three main objectives.  First, it helps states collect and analyze data about who is admitted to their prisons, how long they stay, who returns, and the implications of those practices for public safety and state budgets.  Second, the initiative aids states in understanding how their existing sentencing, release and community-supervision policies compare to those of other states. Finally, the initiative encourages states to use all of this information and the best available research to explore policy changes that will increase public safety and deliver a solid return on taxpayers’ investment.

And this concluding sentiment from the Pew folks resonates with my own vision of blogging: "A wide range of perspectives and interests is pivotal to developing smart, effective sentencing and corrections policy, and we will seek to collaborate with and learn from many different constituencies who share an interest in advancing positive change on these issues."

August 7, 2006 at 09:54 PM | Permalink

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