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Evidence-based pracitices comprise eight principlesThe Westchester County Probation Department works hard to:

  • protect the county's residents and visitors by providing a balance of prevention, intervention and control strategies for offenders, victims and families, and 
  • enforce the orders and conditions imposed by the courts

The Probation Department follows eight evidence-based principals adapted from the American Probation and Parole Association and designed with the intent to bring about effective interventions. They are explained below.  You may click on the image above for a larger view of the schematic depicting these eight evidence-based principles.

Assess actuarial risk/need
Offenders are not alike. It's our job to determine offenders risks and needs and address them both in hopes of reducing the likelihood of offenders commiting the same crime again or another a different one.

Enhance intrinsic motivation
Discover ways to positively motivate offenders to change their behavior. We need to continually improve our skills in working with offenders so we can assist in positive behavioral change.

Target intervention
Provide effective interventions matched to the criminogenic needs of offenders according to the principles of risk, needs and responsivity.

Improve training skills
Use cognitive behavioral methods when appropriate and allow staff to model pro-social behavior and offenders to practice the pro-social behavior.

Increase positive reinforcement
We need to continually practice positive reinforcement among offenders: positive reinforcement can bring about positive behavioral changes.

Engage on-going community support
We have found that pro-social family networks increase available resources and reinforce positive behavior. We must continue to work with offenders and their families to make appropriate (postive) change rather than isolate offenders from supportive family environments.

Measure relevant practices
Collect data to determine how a program is affecting behavior changes among offenders as well as its affect on staff performance. Measurement of agreed-upon variables assists us in showing the level and degree of offender change and staff involvement using evidence-based practices.

Provide measurement feedback
Encourage behavior change by providing feedback to offenders and Probation staff as well as those who fund the programs.