Probation Reform Is Zero Tolerance a Viable Option?


Can community supervision compete with incarceration as a means of crime control? Mark Kleiman, professor of policy studies at the UCLA School of Public Affairs and the author of "When Brute Force Fails: Strategic Thinking for Crime Control," believes it can. At a July 2005 roundtable discussion sponsored by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ), Kleiman told a group of researchers and prominent community supervision administrators, "If we get [community supervision] right, we could cut incarceration by 50 percent, have less crime rather than more crime, and spend the same amount of money." This paper, produced by the Vera Institute of Justice with support from NIJ, summarizes the discussion between Kleiman, who has proposed a new model of community corrections based on his theoretical work, and his audience of researchers and community corrections administrators, who represent a wealth of practical experience.