Thinking for a Change (T4C) in Community Corrections, a Program Evaluation: Does Aftercare Reduce Recidivism Rates Further for Criminal Justice Clients?
AffiliationUniversity of Southern Indiana
TitleThinking for a Change (T4C) in Community Corrections, a Program Evaluation: Does Aftercare Reduce Recidivism Rates Further for Criminal Justice Clients?
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Bullying is not a new problem, it has been documented in various books, newspapers, and stories for hundreds of years. The systematic study of bullying, however, is a more recent phenomenon which has taken place since the late 1970’s. Even more recent, is the adapted definition of bullying and a fervor for anti-bullying programming in schools, due to political and social pressure rising from increased mass shootings and violence in schools. The first federal definition of bullying was released in 2014 from the Centers for Disease Control and Department of Education which includes three core elements: unwanted aggressive behavior, observed or perceived imbalance of power, and repetition or high likelihood of repetition of bullying behaviors.
Recent research indicates that there are long-term effects on the victims of bullying including depression, suicidal ideation, eating disorders, drug use, and delinquency, as well as a high risk of adult offending for those who perpetrate bullying (DeCamp et al. 2014). What appears to be known at this time, is that “zero tolerance” and expulsion of bullies is not effective. There does not appear to be one simple solution, however, it does appear that the most effective approaches for prevention have involved the entire school community – students, teachers, administrators, and parents in building relationships and a safe school culture.
In following the whole school approach with regards to prevention, it seems that a similar approach would be effective in implementing an intervention program. Utilizing a restorative justice model for intervention would bring together the bully, the victim, the family, the school, and any partners, in a non-adversarial process to promote accountability, problem-solving, and harm reduction. This model would bring together the entire school community while addressing the needs of the bully, the victim, and the school in an open, safe, and secure environment.