We welcome all members to submit examples of good practice.


Below we hear from Louise Southalan, who provides examples of good practice from the US of curated justice/ health resources.

US Department of Justice – provision of access to relevant research and resources

The US Department of Justice has direct responsibilities for federal prisons, but beyond this its various agencies explicitly identify roles to support and facilitate improvement in state and county criminal justice and custodial practice.  This includes very extensive investment in the generation, analysis and dissemination of evidence.  Particular agencies include:

National Institute of Justice

The National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is the research, development, and evaluation agency of the U.S. Department of Justice. The NIJ’s mission is to advance scientific research, development, and evaluation to enhance the administration of justice and public safety.  One of the more impressive features of the NIJ’s work is its Crime Solutions initiative. This consists of a web-based clearinghouse of programs and practices which have undergone rigorous evaluations and meta-analyses.  These are identified, screened, reviewed, and rated using a standardised process.  Ratings reflect the strength of the evidence about whether the programs achieve criminal justice, juvenile justice, and crime victim services outcomes.  Programs include those focused on prison and jail mental health.

National Institute of Corrections

The National Institute of Corrections (NIC) has a legislative mandate to provide specialised services to federal, state and local corrections agencies from a national perspective.  This includes a national corrections-specific information clearinghouse, research and evaluation guidance and data collection.  This includes extensive academic and practitioner resources on mental illness and correctional settings, and compendia of evidence-based best practice.  The NIC also provides training, partners on projects and hosts online and in person information sharing networks for people working in corrections.

Bureau of Justice Assistance

The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) leads criminal justice policy, training, and technical assistance. It also acts as a connecting point with national organizations to set policy and disseminate best practice.  Relevant examples of this work include:

  • The Center for Research Partnerships and Program Evaluation (CRPPE), which provides information on practitioner-researcher partnerships, performance measures, logic models, program evaluation, and other resources directed at improve the quality, quantity, and equity of services,
  • The National Reentry Resource Center, which is an extremely extensive primary source of information and guidance on re-entry funded by the BJA and operated by the Council of State Governments.  This includes the What Works in Reentry Clearinghouse, which houses research on the effectiveness of a wide variety of reentry interventions.  The Resource Centre also delivers training and technical assistance, develops resources and tools on evidence-based, data-driven strategies to reduce recidivism, maintains online state and local reentry directories that help people identify local service providers, and has monthly webinars and newsletters, as well as conferences.
  • The BJA library, which has a large collection of resources
  • The Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program, which supports projects to plan, implement, or expand a justice and mental health collaboration program between criminal justice and mental health partners, and includes a resources collection