By: Julie McGregor, BJA NTTAC Director of Communications In a time when many criminal justice agencies are asked to do more with shrinking budgets and limited resources, it’s important that they to know how to locate available resources to make smart, cost-effective decisions while promoting public safety. The Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) National Training and Technical Assistance Center (NTTAC) is committed to being responsive to the emerging needs of the criminal justice field by bridging the gap between communities in need and available training and technical assistance (TTA) resources. To fulfill this goal, BJA NTTAC has identified four new TTA initiatives, including the Crime Analysis on Demand TTA program. Through crime analysis on demand, BJA NTTAC will offer law enforcement agencies TTA resources to enhance their capabilities to analyze and use data to make informed decisions to prevent and effectively respond to crime. This includes conducting needs assessments, providing recommendations to address analytical gaps, and offering comprehensive training for crime analysts. To share information about the Crime Analysis on Demand TTA availability and other new TTA initiatives, BJA NTTAC recently attended two national industry events – the American Probation and Parole Association (APPA) 38th Annual Training Institute in Baltimore, Md., and the National Criminal Justice Association (NCJA) National Forum in Chicago, Il. Participation in both of these events served as an opportunity to network with criminal justice professionals and bridge the gap between communities and resources, enabling BJA NTTAC to spread the word about available TTA resources that can be tailored to address the unique and critical needs faced by state, local, and tribal agencies across the following four areas:
- Crime Analysis on Demand
- Assisting Communities in Preventing and Deterring Crime Using the Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED) Approach
- Training for Law Enforcement
- Community Corrections Agencies
To support the use of data to drive decisionmaking, BJA NTTAC understands the importance of encouraging communities to consider environmental factors that may lead to crime and put citizens at risk. Therefore, BJA NTTAC offers TTA resources to help communities assess their needs and consider both design and place, with a focus on crime prevention. Through the implementation of CPTED principles and strategies, locations of high crime will be assessed and community-specific recommendations will be developed to give communities the tools to make the physical improvements and policy changes that will prevent future criminal activity. Enhancing the efficiency and leadership skills of law enforcement personnel is another new TTA initiative. By partnering with expert training providers, BJA NTTAC will provide a series of courses for personnel across the country, including the 7-Habits for Law Enforcement, Nobility of Policing, Policing at the Speed of Trust, and Diversity Centered Leadership. These trainings will help law enforcement professionals to achieve sustainable organizational change to ultimately become more effective stewards of public safety. Lastly, BJA NTTAC recognizes the growing need to provide tools and resources to enhance the work of community corrections agencies. Through NTTAC, BJA has committed resources to provide tailored resources to address challenges faced by community corrections agencies on a number of key issues, from using empirically validated offender assessment tools that guide supervision and decisionmaking to implementing data-driven sanctions to reduce the likelihood of recidivism. Detailed information on the six key issues supported by these new resources. While these four new TTA initiatives are highlighted to address emerging justice needs, they are just an example of the broad range of services and topic areas that BJA NTTAC supports. In our conversations with criminal justice professionals at industry events – like APPA and NCJA – BJA NTTAC recognizes that communities are in need of support to address a broader spectrum of public safety challenges. As it provides these newly identified resources, BJA NTTAC remains committed to facilitating the delivery of high-quality, strategically focused TTA. It will continue to provide services that support practitioners in the effort to adapt their strategy and operations to proactively address ever-evolving criminal justice challenges. If you are interested in seeking TTA in one of the four new initiatives mentioned above or if you have another critical need, complete the online TTA request form. Find more information on the other ten topic areas supported by BJA NTTAC. For additional questions, or to submit the work of your organization or jurisdiction for consideration to be featured in a future TTA Today blog post, please email BJANTTAC@ojp.usdoj.gov.