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Alternative Sentencing for Corrections - A Manual

NCJ Number
Date Published
40 pages
This manual describes the benefits of sentencing alternatives to incarceration, outlines existing alternative programs in New Jersey, and proposes steps for planning and implementing a community-based sentencing alternative.
An alternative disposition is any remedial program or plan which removes a case from court jurisdiction, avoids confinement in a county jail or State correctional facility, removes a person from a jail or correctional facility, or avoids reincarceration following release on parole or probation. These alternatives to incarceration have the benefits of offering more opportunities for offender behavioral change than does incarceration and at reduced costs while still providing for punishment and community safety. Alternative programs currently operating in New Jersey are in the areas of mediation, fines or restitution, case/community supervision, incarceration/probation, residential programs, and innovative team approaches. The replication of alternative programs involves assessing leadership resources and existing alternative programs in the community, developing an appropriate organizational structure, becoming acquainted with criminal justice personnel relevant to the proposed program, and developing specific services. Appended case histories, a glossary of commonly used criminal justice terms, an overview of the courts, and a flow chart for a criminal case.