From Policy to Practice A process evaluation of Specialized Substance Abuse Supervision in Nebraska


In 2000, after decades of enacting mandatory minimum sentences and limiting early releases from prison, state leaders in Nebraska recognized the need for a new approach to control prison growth while maintaining public safety and holding people accountable. In 2003, the Legislature created the Community Corrections Council, which was charged with creating a community corrections infrastructure for the state. A cornerstone in the development of a community corrections system in Nebraska is the Substance Abuse Supervision (SSAS), an evidence-based supervision program for prison-bound felony drug offenders and early-release parolees combining treatment with services that address other types of needs. In 2006, the Office of Probation Administration (OPA) piloted SSAS in five sites with the explicit goal of expanding statewide to reduce growth in Nebraska’s prison population. To facilitate a data-driven approach for moving forward, the Vera Institute of Justice conducted a process evaluation of the five pilot SSAS sites to explore the fidelity of program implementation and to better understand factors that influenced program implementation. The goal of this evaluation is to provide feedback to the Council and OPA on both questions to further develop the statewide implementation model.


Fewer People are Going Back to Prison—But that Doesn’t Paint the Entire Picture

Judging a person’s reentry success based on recidivism highlights their failures, but what about their successes?

Fewer people are going back to prison, according to a new study from Pew Trusts.  The number of people sent back to state prison three years after being released dropped by nearly a quarter over a seven-year period. The study, which analyzed short-term and long-term recidivism rates, found that 48 percent of incarcerated people released in 2005 ret...

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  • Jack W. Duran
    Jack W. Duran
  • Shawnda Chapman Brown
    Shawnda Chapman Brown
August 07, 2018
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Series: Dispatches from W.O.R.T.H.

How Young Women are Building Promise in a Connecticut Prison

Every aspect of W.O.R.T.H.’s design intentionally embodies the spirit of the “human dignity principle”—the concept that every human being possesses an intrinsic worth, merely by being human. From its culture to its physical environment to its daily routine, W.O.R.T.H. was re-purposed, designed, and transformed from a vacant, old unit inside the pri...

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  • Ryan Shanahan
    Ryan Shanahan
  • Alex Frank
    Alex Frank
August 02, 2018
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