Department of Community Programs
The Department of Community Programs (DOCC) is responsible for a variety of in-custody and community-based offender programs. The Department's mission is to reduce crime and create safer communities through alternatives to incarceration that provide a comprehensive continuum of custodial and community-based programs, treatment and active supervision. Its members strive to provide offenders with the best opportunity for successful reentry into the community. The Department is divided into five Divisions: In-Custody Behavioral Services, Drug Court Treatment, Pretrial Services, County Probation and Day Reporting and Reentry. The Department employs 200 staff, has an annual budget of $20 million, oversees an active caseload of approximately 12,000 offenders each day. It is estimated that the services rendered by the Department save the County's taxpayers millions in incarceration costs annually.
Day Reporting and Reentry: The Day Reporting and Reentry Division helps reintegrate offenders back into the community following release from jail. It combines the benefits of intensive supervision with reentry to help manage the jail population while ensuring public safety. The division provides offenders with support mechanisms needed to transition successfully back in to the community, while at the same time monitoring their activity to prevent recidivism.
Pre-Trial Services: The Pretrial Services Division is designed to divert criminal defendants from pretrial incarceration. It provides complete, accurate and non-adversarial information to the judges of the 17th Judicial Circuit to improve the release/detention decision process in compliance with Florida Statutes and the Rules of Criminal Procedures. Additionally, the program supervises pretrial defendants in the community in partnership with law enforcement and outside agencies, ensuring that mandated conditions and court ordered special requirements are satisfied.
Probation Division: The Probation Division is charged with the duty of overseeing those defendants sentenced to misdemeanor probation for criminal offenses by the 17th Judicial Court in compliance with Florida Statues and the Rules of Criminal Procedure. Following sentencing by the Judge, the defendant is assigned a BSO probation specialist, who establishes a case management plan. The defendant reports at least monthly to the assigned specialist and must comply with the orders of the court. If the defendant complies with the orders within the time frame specified, his/her probation is successfully terminated and the case is closed. If, however, the defendant fails to comply with the orders within the time frame specified, their probation is violated and generally a warrant is issued for their arrest.
Employment Services Program: BSO's Employment Services Program is a joint relationship with local area businesses and organizations that works to reduce recidivism by helping offenders currently under supervision by BSO to obtain employment and become productive members of the community.
Participants are assessed by a community job development coordinator to determine the participants' level of education and skills, their interests, their understanding of the principles of successful employment and their readiness. The process also identifies areas of need for the participant to obtain employment including a permanent address, social security number, proper documentation for aliens, access to transportation, etc.
Participants not ready for a job interview are required to attend BSO's Employability Skills Workshops which teaches participants about potential career interests, resume writing, proper dress and hygiene and interviewing skills.
Once a participant is ready, the program identifies potential employers and sends the participant for an interview with the employer.
More information about BSO's Employment Services Program is available from the Department of Community Programs at (954) 535-2373. Enrollment in the program is available at locations throughout the county.
Drug Court: Broward County's Drug Court is the third oldest drug court in the nation, created in 1991, and the Drug Court Treatment Division serves close to 800 clients daily. The Drug Court Treatment Division has two programs providing diversion from jail or prison for persons with substance related conditions. The original Pre-Trial Intervention Program was designed as an alternative to traditional incarceration for first time, non-violent criminal offenders who are charged with the purchase or possession of a controlled substance and/or other substance abuse related offense. The grant funded Diversionary Treatment Program (DTP) was designed to divert adjudicated felons with substance related conditions from returning to prison. Both programs are a minimum of one-year of treatment with the goal of breaking the cycle of addiction and criminal justice involvement by using a variety of individualized treatment services to restore the participant as a productive member of society.
In-Custody Behavioral Services: In-Custody Behavioral Services - The In-Custody Behavioral Services Division provides programs and treatment services to inmates in Broward County's Jail System. The Substance Abuse (SAP) and Life Skills Programs target the criminogenic factors resulting in an inmate's incarceration. The programs promote pro-social attitudes and behavior change in an effort to reduce criminal behavior. Both programs provide inmates with a set daily schedule of activities that include group sessions, lesson plans, workbook assignments, and video learning. SAP is a didactic modality of substance abuse education using a best practices curriculum combined with 12Step Recovery (AA/NA) groups. The Life Skills Program includes instruction on domestic violence, parenting, anger management, financial management, leisure and peer association planning, problem solving, self-control skills, coping skills, and stress management. Both programs are available to male and female inmates, are by court order only, and for a duration of 30 days. The SAP may be followed by 30 days in-custody in the Alcoholic Anonymous/Narcotics Anonymous Unit within the jail. Both programs may be followed by 30 days of aftercare upon release through BSO's Day Reporting and Reentry Program. The Mental Health Program takes a holistic approach to offender mental health treatment including psychological assessment, individual and group counseling interventions, and discharge planning. The division provides counseling services to offenders located on the Mental Health Unit of the North Broward detention facility that are individualized to meet the needs of offenders with varying levels of psychological functioning.
Juvenile Assessment Center (JAC): The Juvenile Assessment Center is the central receiving and intake facility for all arrested juveniles in Broward County. Youth brought to the Juvenile Assessment Center by law enforcement officers are fingerprinted, photographed and booked. In addition, youth receive assessments of their risk to the public, mental health and substance abuse disorders, and referral to court and community services. An intake process is completed on the youth as well as an initial mental health and substance abuse assessment (PACT). The detention screening instrument is also administered, if applicable, and if necessary the juvenile is referred to the BSO Juvenile Assessment Team for a more in-depth assessment. If the JAT determines additional services are needed, they will link the juvenile to existing community services through their case management component.
For more information, please contact BSO's Department of Community Programs at (954) 535-2373.
- Day Reporting and Reentry Division
- Drug Court Treatment Program
- In-Custody Behavioral Services
- Pre-Trial Services Division
- Probation Division
- Juvenile Assessment Center
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