The criminal justice system is full of financial incentives that intentionally or inadvertently help fuel mass incarceration. Government funding is often given to public and private entities without accurate accountability - federally, in states, and at the local level.
But, there is a solution. "Success-Oriented Funding" is simple: fund what works. The policy model would restructure criminal justice funding to ensure better outcomes, ones that reduce both crime and incarceration together. Success-Oriented Funding would extend what the government has already started to implement in education and healthcare. By setting clear goals for success, government can better align public policy goals with funding streams.
“Asking federal anticrime aid applicants a different set of questions might produce better incentives for state and local projects that help reduce mass incarceration in the United States ..."
(source: The Crime Report)
To move the criminal justice system forward, should we be employing the same tactics used at the height of the crime wave in the '80s? Or focus efforts—and dollars—on modern data-driven approaches and away from incarceration?
Conservative and progressive groups, law enforcement, and policy makers have written letters in support of the Brennan Center’s proposal for reform.
Considering their cost and wide allocation, grant programs have a significant effect on criminal justice and corrections policy nationwide. Congress and the DOJ should look at these grant programs as a valuable tool for reform.
At a time of national belt-tightening, it’s important that federal justice grant money goes toward achieving clear goals.
“The other problem with these grants is that there’s no real metric attached to them. The Brennan Center recently published an excellent overview of this problem, with some smart proposals for reform.”
(source: The Washington Post)
The Justice Policy Institute examines the need for reforms to the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant program.
The Brennan Center submitted testimony to the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and Science encouraging the use of Success-Oriented Funding.
The Brennan Center has a smart new plan to reduce mass incarceration in America: fund the criminal justice policies that work and starve the funding of those that don’t.
Lauren-Brooke Eisen on how success-oriented funding principals improve use of taxpayer money, promote accountability, and reduce government waste.
"In 1988, when the programme was created, American cities faced soaring crime rates. Today the problem is that too many people are expensively locked up. A new report from the Brennan Centre for Justice ... suggests that the JAG programme may be partly to blame for this."
(source: The Economist)
“In a recent report, the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law calls this a "bet on success ... instead of using the typical model of privatization, in which private prisons generally bet on failure (i.e. the more prisoners, the better)."