Glen Hardy1, Glenn Rutter2
1 Magistrates’ Court of Victoria, GPO Box 882, Melbourne, Victoria, 3000. Glen.Hardy@courts.vic.gov.au
2 Magistrates’ Court of Victoria, GPO Box 882, Melbourne, Victoria, 3000. Glenn.Rutter@courts.vic.gov.au
The Court Integrated Services Program (CISP) is a court-based support program operating in the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria which addresses issues underlying offending behaviour. It works with accused persons who are on bail, summons or remand pending a bail hearing, and have health or social needs that contribute to their offending such as drug and alcohol addiction, homelessness, disability, mental health or social and cultural isolation. The program provides short-term case management (up to four months) and referral for therapeutic interventions to assist participants to address their needs prior to sentencing. CISP case managers provide regular feedback to magistrates on the progress of each participant. This monitoring ensures that participants are “kept in view” by the court, with the aim of improving community safety. The CISP is a flexible model which has the capacity to respond quickly to changes in the population of accused who are appearing before the court. Recently, this has seen the program adapt to the challenges posed by the increased number of participants using crystal methylamphetamine (Ice) and also the increasing rates of family violence. Now in its 10th year of operation, the CISP operates at 12 court locations and supports approximately 2000 participants per year, with plans to expand the program to additional locations in the near future.
In 2016 the CISP was a gold award winner in the community-led category of the Australian Crime and Violence Prevention Awards.
Drawing on ten years of data this paper will examine indicators for successful completion and non-completion of the program and compare the characteristics of those who offend/reoffend post program completion.