After more than a year of significant changes to Mississippi’s sentencing laws and corrections policies, the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) is now committing staff resources to sustaining these transformative system improvements. One essential part of this effort is selecting and developing MDOC staff to become trainers of their peers in foundational corrections research and its practical application.

To date, as part of the Phase II Justice Reinvestment Initiative in Mississippi, the Crime and Justice Institute (CJI) has trained and coached a cadre of Mississippi DOC staff on:

  • Principles of Effective Intervention so staff understand the importance of adherence to the principles of risk, need, responsivity and fidelity at all stages of the criminal justice process
  • Core Correctional Practices to coach staff through modeling, teaching, and practicing prosocial skills and behaviors with clients
  • Effective Case Management for staff to learn skills and processes for developing individualized, targeted case plans for improved client outcomes

MDOC trainers were selected for their skills in communication, organization and case management. Through the train-the-trainer process, trainers have become content and communications experts and have taken a larger role in advocating for the efficacy of evidence-based practices in the day-to-day case management work. Ultimately, the trainers will have the capacity to deliver essential trainings to MDOC personnel into the future, cementing the work of justice reinvestment by enhancing staff capacity to effectively improve offender outcomes.