Community Corrections Centers
There are 17 Community Corrections Centers (CCC) located across the Commonwealth. Clients attend the CCC to participate in programming designed to improve their lives and avoid further criminal justice involvement. Each CCC offers about 15 different programs including cognitive behavioral treatment for Substance Use Disorder (SUD) and to improve decision making, employment counseling, and Adult Basic Education, GED/HiSET and post-secondary preparation.
Typically CCC attendance is ordered by the court pursuant to G. L. c. 211F § 3 but it can also be a condition of parole or pre-release supervision. For those returning home after a period of incarceration attendance may be voluntary. Here are some of the ways people access the CCC:
Enhanced Community Supervision (ECS)
Enhanced Community Supervision (ECS) combines services such as treatment, education, and employment counseling, with accountability measures such as drug and alcohol screening, community service, electronic monitoring, and day reporting for those that are at high-risk for recidivism and either have not been successful on traditional probation or are suitable for an alternative to incarceration. ECS participants receive a comprehensive assessment to determine the needs they have that are most likely to contribute to future criminal conduct. CCC staff work with the client to develop a treatment plan to address those needs. Once the client and staff have determined an appropriate treatment plan the client reports to the CCC to attend classes such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), HiSET/GED preparation, and employment readiness/retention.
CCC staff meet weekly to review client progress and provide a formal review for the client and the court on a monthly basis. Clients that are assessed to be at the highest risk level typically need to complete more than 250 hours of CBT programming to be successful. Clients can work with staff to determine the pace at which they complete CBT hours. Those that attend the CCC more frequently can complete their hours in a shorter period of time. Clients that complete CBT hours, attend classes regularly, and demonstrate pro-social change through positive interaction, employment or educational achievement can transition from weekly CCC attendance as part of ECS to standard probation supervision.
Standard probation supervision
Many probation clients are subject to customized probation conditions designed to meet a particular need they have. For example, the court may order a person to “obtain employment” or “obtain a GED/HiSET.” Beginning in April 2019, if that person has also been assessed by the probation department to be at moderate or high-risk for recidivism, their probation officer can refer them to the CCC to fulfill that probation condition. The CCC offers many different programs including:
- Cognitive-Behavioral Treatment to address decision making and substance use disorder such as Moral Reconation Therapy, Substance Abuse and Criminal Conduct, and Relapse Prevention Therapy;
- Education including Adult Basic Education, GED/HiSET preparation, Financial Literacy, Basic Computer and college preparation; and
- Employment Support including ServSafe, Change Companies: Seeking Employment and Job Skills, NIC Job Club, and job retention.
There are many other ways that the CCC delivers services to probation clients under Standard Probation Supervision. For example, in Berkshire County the CCC delivers the Intimate Partner Abuse Education Program certified by the Department of Public Health. Many CCC locations serve as collection sites for the MA Probation Service Drug and Alcohol Screening Program. Probation departments use the CCC as a venue to meet with their clients in the community, especially after traditional court business hours. CCC are also the host site of other programs offered by local probation departments such as Motherhood, Fatherhood, and Changing Lives through Literature.
When a person makes their first appearance before the court on a criminal case, the court must decide if there are any measures necessary to ensure that the person returns to court for their next court date. If the court decides that the person needs some support to ensure that they will return to court it may order the person to report to the CCC for Pretrial Services supervised by a probation officer as a category B condition of release under G. L. c. 276 §§ 57, 58, or 58A. Pretrial Services allows a person to remain at home while their case is pending as long as they report to the CCC periodically and obey any other conditions of release placed on them by the court. When a person first comes to the CCC for Pretrial Services they will meet with CCC staff to determine their reporting schedule, discuss any services they would like the CCC to help them with, and be advised of the next time they are due to report to court. A person ordered to participate in Pretrial Services is not obligated to participate in any services at the CCC. However, if they are interested in obtaining treatment for drug or alcohol use or help with education or employment, the CCC will help them obtain that service from a community-based provider and case manage it so that their participation can be reported to the court.
Many people that come before the court for criminal cases are in immediate need of treatment for drug or alcohol use, or are desperate for support with housing, employment, or educational needs. Pretrial Treatment allows a person to come to the CCC during the pretrial phase of their case to engage in the same Enhanced Community Supervision as someone who was sentenced to the CCC by the court. By engaging in a plan to address these issues early in the process, before the court has entered a final judgment, they are able to get back on track, shorten the time it takes to resolve their case, and hopefully get a more favorable outcome. With the defendant’s consent the court can order the defendant to report to the CCC for Pretrial Treatment supervised by a probation officer as a category B condition of release under G.L. c. 276 §§ 57, 58, and 58A. For more information about what is available at the CCC via Pretrial Treatment see the description of Enhanced Community Supervision.
Community Service Program
To find out more about the Community Service Program, please see Learn about the Trial Court Community Service Program.
Boston, MA 02108