Long Beach Joins White House Data Driven Justice Initiative
2016-10-18 · By Editor
The City of Long Beach has joined the White House Data Driven Justice Initiative (DDJ), joining more than 100 cities seeking to disrupt the cycle of incarceration.
“The City is committed to innovative solutions that better serve our community, and generate significant budget savings,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “That includes using data to ensure the efficient use of our public health and safety systems.”
DDJ communities will bring together data from across criminal justice and health systems to identify the individuals with the highest number of contacts with police, ambulance, emergency departments, and other services, and link them to health, behavioral health, and social services in the community, with a goal of reducing overreliance on emergency healthcare and encounters with the criminal justice system.
The DDJ communities will implement the following strategies that have proven to be effective in reducing unnecessary incarceration in jails:
- Creating or expanding local data exchanges that combine justice and health system information, with appropriate legal and privacy protections, to identify multiple system “super-utilizers;”
- Diverting this population, as well as people who may be committing low-level crimes primarily due to mental illness, from the criminal justice system prior to arrest, where appropriate, and linking them to proper care management; and
- Implementing data-driven risk assessment tools to ensure decisions on pre-trial release are informed by empirically validated methods of evaluating defendants’ risk to the community, not ability to pay or other extraneous factors.
These innovative strategies, which have measurably reduced jail populations in several communities, help stabilize individuals and families, better serve communities, and often save money in the process.
The President announced DDJ program participants at the Frontiers Conference hosted by Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburg on Thursday, October 13. The City’s efforts involve the following Departments: Police, Development Services, Health and Human Services, Fire, and the City Manager’s Office.