NEWS & EVENTS

IN THE NEWS

Achieving Racial Equity & Improving Culture in Jails …

MAY 2024 |To understand the factors driving inequity in jail culture, CUNY ISLG funded Justice System Partners to partner with Wellbeing & Equity Innovations (WEI) through the Safety and Justice Challenge (SJC) Research Consortium to conduct a mixed-methods study in an SJC site using community-based participatory research methods. This study employed a Plan-Do-Study-Act (PDSA) process . . . READ
 

To learn more about this study, visit CUNY ISLG’s webpage dedicated to the project here where you can download the full report, methods brief, and implementation guide.

Achieving Racial Equity and Improving Culture in Jails Using a Community-Engaged Quality Improvement Process

MAY 2024 | Jails are racialized organizations. Many jails have racialized subcultures, where residents of non-White racial backgrounds face increased segregation, tensions, or violence; limited employment opportunities; and social stigma. Racial disparities in incarceration exacerbate vulnerability to violence, sexual abuse, solitary confinement, and inadequate healthcare . . . READ

Congressional Research Institute for Social Work & Policy – Criminal Justice Reform is Not Dead by Charles E. Lewis, Jr.

MAY 2024 | Many are the victims of the War on Drugs and mandatory minimum sentences . . .They have a champion in Dr. Carrie Pettus, whose work with her newly formed nonprofit, Wellbeing and Equity Innovations (WEI), seeks to have their voices heard and their lives restored. I am joining forces with her to advance this important work. . . READ

The Grand Challenges for Social Work is pleased to welcome Carrie Pettus, PhD, as chair of its Leadership Board and Executive Committee. READ MORE

Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office Initiates Innovative New Violence Interruption Program

The Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office is announcing that applications are being accepted for Alternative Prosecution for Positive Outcomes (“APPO”), an innovative new program [in partnership with WEI] . . . READ MORE


 ACPO program allows treatment alternatives to some offenders

READ MORE


Programming initiative should help prisoners reintegrate into the community

The Nebraska Department of Correctional Services announced recently that it has launched a new phase of evidence-based programming aimed at providing strengths-based re-entry support services to incarcerated individuals. READ MORE

Nebraska prisons launching new, ‘holistic’ approach to prepare inmates for reentry into society

NOV 2023 | LINCOLN, Neb. (Nebraska Examiner) | Paul Hammel A $900,000 grant helps set up program focused on positive thinking and relationships, and use of fellow inmates as ‘peers’

. . . State prison officials, in a press release, said that the 5-Keys programming is “evidence-based” and a “packaged approach” to preparing inmates for reentry. “This model works because these are things that all of us need to be healthier,” said Dawn Renee Smith, the deputy director of Nebraska Corrections. . .  READ MORE

NDCS launches new programs to help inmates reenter society

NOV 2023 | LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) | Andrew Ward The Nebraska Department of Correctional Services is launching new program it said will help inmates reenter society with a better mindset.

. . .“Successful reentry preparation is about providing the right tools and getting the right person in the right program at the right time,” said NDCS director Rob Jeffreys in a press release. “This is an innovative initiative that takes a holistic approach to addressing barriers and building essential skills for our reentrants.”  READ MORE

NEBRASKA TV   |    NORTH PLATE TELEGRAPH

EVENTS CALENDAR

JUNE 6, 2024 | WEI is invited to present at the APA Gun Violence Prosecutor-Led Alternatives Community of Practice, in the Bronx, NY. This presentation will feature the Marion County Victims of Gun Violence Diversion Program.

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JUNE 7, 2024 | Dr. Pettus will present the paper “Developing Antiracism Interventions in Integrated Primary Care” from at 4:10 PM at the High-Risk High-Reward symposium. Learn more at: https://commonfund.nih.gov/highrisk/symposium

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 JUNE 12-13, 2024 | Dr. Pettus will attend the Jcoin 2024 In-Person Steering Committee Meeting. She will be presenting “Developing and Evaluating a Behavioral Health Literacy Curriculum in State Prisons: A Community-Engaged Approach with Carceral Staff and Residents” – Carrie Pettus and Danielle Rudes (CTC)

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JUNE 25, 2024 |Retaining Talent Training- Embassy Suites by Hilton Tampa USF Near Busch Gardens

WEI partners with the Florida Chamber Foundation to enhance workforce development strategies through data-driven approaches – assisting in recruiting and maintaining Steering Committees and Technical Working Groups, identifying national excellence in second chance hiring, tailoring materials for Florida’s market needs, and managing panels of speakers for impactful presentations. WEI strives to empower Florida’s workforce through inclusive and informed initiatives.

MAY 6, 2024 |  Dr. Pettus will be giving a human subjects presentation at the upcoming JCOIN LEAP Scholars meeting. Learn more about JCOIN LEAP.

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MAY 22, 2024 | Retaining Talent Training- Fort Lauderdale Marriott Coral Springs Hotel & Convention Center

JUNE 25, 2024 |Retaining Talent Training- Embassy Suites by Hilton Tampa USF Near Busch Gardens

WEI partners with the Florida Chamber Foundation to enhance workforce development strategies through data-driven approaches – assisting in recruiting and maintaining Steering Committees and Technical Working Groups, identifying national excellence in second chance hiring, tailoring materials for Florida’s market needs, and managing panels of speakers for impactful presentations. WEI strives to empower Florida’s workforce through inclusive and informed initiatives.

Dr. Pettus will be speaking on April, 10, 11 & 12 at the the 17th ACCJH Conference in Phoenix AZ. ACCJH highlights emerging research and policy across the justice field. VISIT WEBSITE

April 10: Advancing Research and Organizational Aims through Use of Rapid Cycle Models in Criminal Legal – Faye Taxman, Carrie Pettus

April 11: The Burden of Proof: Recidivism and the Fight Over Causal Inference – Nicole Lewis, Maurice Chammah, Kathryn Notowny, Carrie Pettus

April 12: A Qualitative Analysis of what Works for Engagement in a Prisoner Reentry Program – Chris Veeh, Tanya Renn, Carrie Pettus


“Untapped Potential: Embracing Second Chance Hiring”

During this FREE webinar, Carrie Pettus, PhD, MSW of Wellbeing & Equity Innovations (WEI), shares a national perspective on the value of second chance hiring as a talent pipeline solution and previews our Second Chance Hiring Initiative partnership.

JAN 12 | 4 PM

“CHILDREN WITH PARENTS BEHIND BARS”

Congressional Research Institute for Social Work & Policy (CRISP)

According to the WEGOTUSNOW website, more than 10 million children in the United States have experienced parental incarceration in their lifetime.

Charles E. Lewis, Jr., Dr. Tamarie Willis, Dr. Carrie Pettus, Ebony Underwood & Adrain Burnim – MORE INFO

REGISTRATIONSeating is first-come, first-served.

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JAN 13 | 9:45 AM

Strategy to Augment Diversion Programs: The Case for Financial Capability and Asset Building

The US prison system has become a system of mass incarceration. Yet, many incarcerated individuals have committed nonviolent offenses or are confined because they could not pay fines or fees.

Lissa Johnson, Dr. Margaret Sherraden, Jude Miller, Dr. Carrie Pettus, Dr. Jin Huang

INFO & REGISTRATION

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JAN 13 | 12:45 PM

Grand Challenges for Social Work Roundtable: Recentering and Generating Equity in Knowledge: How Will the Grand Challenges for Social Work Go Grander?

Learn how the Grand Challenges framework can increase its impact on research, education, policy, and practice through innovation and collaboration.

Dr. Michael Spencer, Dr. Neil Guterman, Dr. Carrie Pettus, Schnavia Hatcher, Kira Silk

INFO & REGISTRATION

• NOV 2–3: Drug Testing and Community Supervision: Interrogating Policy, Practice, and Purpose Convening – The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio

An invitation gathering of practitioners, researchers, academics, policymakers, advocates and activists for dialogue to drive practical change on the ground.

• NOV 3: Preventing Gun Violence: The Role of Social WorK Summit – The University of Chicago Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice.

Engagement with experts from around the US to frame and launch a shared national strategy to address the nation’s gun violence epidemic. Key leaders include Eddie Bocanegra, Senior Advisor in the Office of the Assistant Attorney General, US Department of Justice

NOV 6: Learning Experiences to Advance Practice (LEAP) – Dr. Carrie Pettus presented on the topic “Dissemination Strategies for Non-Academic Audiences” in partnership with the Justice Community Opioid Innovation Network (JCOIN). The LEAP program is designed to educate any interested individual about the nuances of conducting research in criminal justice settings. ABOUT LEAP

• NOV 15-17: American Society of Criminology Conference – Philadelphia
LEARN MORE

Dr. Pettus – Roundtable: Involving System-Impacted Populations in Research and Policy – providing an overview of methods that center the expertise of system-impacted individuals, including community-based participatory action research methods, qualitative methods, and community engagement in project development and policy reform.

Student Program – Social Impact Horizon:
Navigating Grand Challenges in Social Work

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 21 – 6-7:30pm EDT

REGISTRATION CLOSED

Oct 12-13: Prosecutor Benefits Project Convening Denver, Colorado

    • Hosted by Mental Health Colorado, Claremont Graduate University, Texas Southern University, and WEI
    • Support from Arnold Ventures 
    • Research and policy impact summaries forthcoming 

Oct 26–27: 2nd Annual Convening Workshop for Prosecutor-Researcher Collaborations, Santa Barbara, California

    • Hosted by Claremont Graduate University and WEI
    • Support from Arnold Ventures
    • Research and policy impact summaries forthcoming    

LEAP Scholars Presentation – July 10, 2023

Learning Experiences to Advance Practice (LEAP) is a multifaceted program designed to educate any interested individual about the nuances of conducting research in criminal justice settings. The LEAP program is a 1-2 year education and mentorship program that offers two tracks, an Investigator Track and Scholar Track. The program aims to advance the capacity and diversity of high impact research for populations involved with the health and criminal justice systems through specialized training and skill-development curriculums.

  • The Dollars & Sense of Second Chance Hiring: FL Employer Engagement Forum
    Right on Crime Panel
  • Trauma Responsive Reentry
    Noontime Knowledge Webinar, Social Work Month Kickoff: Social Works Breaks Barriers to GO GRANDER!
  • Trauma Responsive Reentry
    Reentry and Reintegration Roundtable with Center for Justice Integration
  • Early Learnings on Trauma Responsive and Violence Interruption Diversion Programs
    Carrie Pettus Brown Bag with Urban Institute

WEI experts launch courses on Utilizing Professional Peers in Drug Treatment Courts: A Course Series for System Actors.

This course series is for system actors working within drug treatment courts who are currently integrating or hope to integrate, professional peers into their settings.

LEARN MORE

  • Trauma Responsive Reentry
    Promoting Reentry for Young Adults: Perspectives from the Field NIJ Webinar
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Upcoming WEI Projects Include:

– Two-year project to Evaluate the Impact of a Statewide Holistic Public Defense Program on Wellbeing & Equity Outcomes
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– National pretrial initiative to Infuse A Culture of Data in Practitioner Offices
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– Project to Develop & Pilot Violence & Retaliation Interruption Alternatives to Prosecution
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– Project to Develop & Pilot Behavioral Health Literacy Interventions with Staff & Incarcerated Residents in State Prisons
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GRANTS

WEI thanks Arnold Ventures for their support of our work with their recent funding to expand the impact of criminal justice transformation and equity.

Scaling “Retaining Talent” in Florida and Beyond: A Training to Assist Employers in Effectively Promoting & Retaining Second Chance Hires.

FUNDER: JP Morgan Chase
WEI is incredibly fortunate to partner with the Florida Chamber Foundation and John Koufos to work with employers on Retaining Talent of individuals with incarceration histories once these individuals are hired. This is all made possible by generous support of JP Morgan Chase who works to open up opportunities for individuals across the nation everyday!  RETAINING TALENT

Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office: Alternative Prosecution Program for Positive Outcomes Program

FUNDER: New Jersey Attorney General’s Office
We are thrilled to continue our work with the Atlantic County, NJ Prosecutor Office on violence prevention and violence and retaliation interruption. They are incredible partners deeply invested in the wellbeing of Atlantic County community members. We look forward to year 2 with ACPO.