Innovation in the Court

To reduce crime, aid victims and move to restore trust in the justice system, the Center for Court Innovation has been experimenting since 1996 with approaches...
by | June 27, 2007

To reduce crime, aid victims and move to restore trust in the justice system, the Center for Court Innovation has been experimenting since 1996 with approaches that combine punishment with treatment, by sentencing non-violent offenders in ways that seek to improve their behavior, serve the needs of the community and get them the social services they need. The center, founded by the New York State Unified Court System and the nonprofit Fund for the City of New York, has three major areas of focus: a research arm that publishes studies and white papers; a department that disseminates best practices and lessons learned from innovative programs; and demonstration projects that test new ideas--the operation of which constitutes the bulk of the center's budget and mission. Some innovative programs include a homelessness court, domestic abuse courts and mental health courts that seek to cut down on the number of people who appear in courtrooms over and over again. The center has been recognized nationally for its ongoing efforts at court reform and is funded by governments at the federal, state and local level. To learn more, visit www.courtinnovation.org.