Prosecutors, judges, and court personnel are continuously looking for new approaches to clearing cases, decreasing dockets and preventing recidivism. Throughout the U.S., experts have found that crimes involving drugs, gun violence and mentally ill and disabled populations respond to special efforts to help hold accountable the individuals who have committed the crime, while also ensuring those individuals return to the community with the services and supervision they need to help them stop their negative behavior. Local court personnel may choose methods unique to their communities to meet these needs, and the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) is committed to providing the resources, tools, and support needed to help them test their ideas.
Through various funding opportunities, research, and more, OJP is working to provide critical information and resources to court personnel and to support programs.
Programs & Initiatives
Following are examples of programs and initiatives from OJP and the OJP program offices related to this topic:
- Drug Courts
- Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program
- National Drug Court Resource Center
- Tribal Civil and Criminal Legal Assistance Program
Also see the Courts page on the CrimeSolutions website for ratings of related programs.
Training & Technical Assistance
Visit the following sites to learn about training and technical assistance services from and supported by OJP program offices:
Frequently Asked Questions
The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) website provides access to information about programs and efforts aimed at improving the justice system's response to people with mental illness. Following are examples of BJA-supported efforts:
Information on the use of DNA to exonerate inmates postconviction can be found on the Wrongful Convictions and the Exonerations Resulting from NIJ Postconviction DNA Testing Funding sections of the National Institute of Justice website.
Through grant funding, the Office of Justice Programs has provided millions of dollars to state and local forensic science laboratories to increase casework capacity, reduce backlogs, and improve quality. For example, grants obtained through the Postconviction Testing of DNA Evidence program can be used to help defray the costs associated with postconviction DNA testing for violent felony offenses in which actual innocence might be demonstrated.