Building evidence on decarceration interventions

Prosecutor Led Diversion Programs (PLDPs)- Examining the potential of PLDPs to help redress existing disparities in the criminal legal system across three sites in the Midwestern United States. Read more here. 

Prosecutor Led Gun Diversion Programs (PLGDPs)- Studying the emerging practice of Prosecutor Led Gun Diversion programs as a strategy to address gun violence and public safety issues while minimizing the ineffective use of incarceration. Read more here.

Mental-Health Screening in Probation– Collaborating with the Cook County Adult Probation Department and the Cook County Health Department to study the implementation of a novel and evidence-based mental health screening tool, Computer Adaptive Testing-Mental Health (CAT-MH™). Read more here.

Social Capacity– A collaboration with stakeholders to better understand and measure a community’s capacity to define and address behavioral health needs without the overuse of incarceration. Read more here.

Recognizing that achieving smart decarceration requires multiple perspectives and experiences having a seat at the table, SDP organizes diverse opportunities for engagement through local and national events that bring together people with lived experience, researchers, policy makers, and practitioners to stimulate new and collaborative approaches to decarceration work.

Leading one of the “12 Grand Challenges for Social Work”  

Through a peer-selected competition, the American Academy of Social Work & Social Welfare (AASWSW) selected Promote Smart Decarceration as one of the 12 Grand Challenges for Social Work. SDP co-directs this Grand Challenge, coordinating the efforts of over fifty social work scholars and practitioners who are actively preparing the social work profession to lead the field of decarceration.

The Smart Decarceration Project is grateful to the following organizations for their support:

National Institutes of Health

Arnold Ventures

The Joyce Foundation

The University of Chicago Women’s Board

UChicago Institute for Translational Medicine

The Robert R. McCormick Foundation

The MacArthur Foundation

The Equitas Project

The University of Chicago’s Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice

The University of Chicago Office of the Provost

UChicago Urban

Chicago Center for Youth Violence Prevention

The Pozen Family Center for Human Rights

The University of Chicago Center for Health Administration Studies

Washington University in St. Louis