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Implementation & Accountability

Promote Workforce Strategies for Reintegrating Ex-Offenders

Implementation & Accountability


Because of the variety in proven interventions, states and communities have leeway to find programs that suit local values, opportunities, and budgets. The key is to select strategies that have documented effectiveness, assure that they are implemented well, and recognize the critical importance of a strong commitment to continuous program improvement.

  • Match expectations with sufficient resources.  Be clear about the goals, purpose and target audience for specific programs.  Provide sufficient resources to ensure fidelity to the evidence-based model, or modify expectations to accommodate variances.

  • Identifying barriers.  Effective policy development requires the identification of factors that may impede effective implementation.

  • Make provisions for broad-based input.  When involvement will increase the likelihood that the needs of children and families are being met by the policy, engage community stakeholders (providers, parents, youth, and courts) in implementation.
  • Support local capacity and communication. Provide technical assistance, monitoring, and oversight to local programs and agencies.  Create opportunities for local-to-local communication, best practices sharing, and local input on state policy decisions.
  • Support ongoing evaluation and continuous program improvement.

The State of New York established the Reentry Task Force Initiative in 16 counties with grants to establish County Reentry Task Forces designed to establish and oversee community-specific, offender reentry strategies and coordinate services for offenders who are released from prison.


Evaluation is essential for successful policy implementation and to ensure intended outcomes.  Accountability requires determining whether programs are implemented correctly, the right programs and strategies are used, progress is measured appropriately, and children and families are benefiting. This is established through both monitoring results (what we are trying to accomplish) and monitoring performance (how we tried to accomplish it).

  • Monitoring Results.  Through data, other information, and consultation, it is possible to determine if the results we set out to achieve for children and families have been attained.  By reexamining the selected indicators we can measure our progress toward the desired result.
  • Monitoring Performance.  Oversight requires policy makers to determine if policy objectives have been achieved by focusing attention on the performance of specific programs or agencies. This involves reviewing individual programs and their impact on the lives of the people the program is designed to serve.

Determining if the strategies are contributing to better results and meeting performance standards.

  • Assign responsibility for realistic outcomes.  Responsibility for outcomes should be designated based on the appropriate roles, resources and capacity of public and private stakeholders.
  • Establish oversight bodies that consistently review key actions by state agencies.
  • Measure and report progress to stakeholders and the community.  Require public availability of data to allow administrators, policymakers and the public to measure the state’s progress on key outcomes.

1. Are we consulting with appropriate experts, advocates, and constituents?

2. Are we ensuring that families are being consulted and that their views and experiences are being considered?

The Federal Reentry Council brings together Cabinet Secretaries to jointly address the reduction of recidivism and improvement of public safety.

1. Does this policy take into account differences in cultures and community norms?

2. Will/Is this policy improving racial equity?