Viewing Hawaii’s opportunity probation with enforcement (HOPE) program through a therapeutic jurisprudence lens

A/Prof Lorana Bartels1

1 Head, School of Law and Justice, University of Canberra, Canberra ACT 2601, 

Swift, certain and fair (SCF) sanctions have attracted both support and criticism for their apparent focus on deterrence to ensure participants’ program compliance. This paper examines the best-known SCF program, Hawaii’s Opportunity with Probation Enforcement (HOPE) program, through the lens of therapeutic jurisprudence. The paper will provide a brief overview of HOPE, including relevant findings from process and outcome evaluations. It will then describe observations of HOPE in practice, with particular focus on the warning hearing, sanctions for non-compliance and early termination for good behaviour. It will also consider the intersections between HOPE, therapeutic jurisprudence and procedural justice. These findings demonstrate that although the focus to date – by both proponents and critics – has been on deterrence, the model in fact demonstrates many features of drug courts. The paper concludes by arguing that HOPE can be best understood when viewed through a therapeutic jurisprudence lens.


Lorana Bartels (BA LLB LLM PhD GDLP GCTE) is the Head of the School of Law and Justice at the University of Canberra and an Honorary Associate Professor at the University of Tasmania. Her key areas of research interest include sentencing and correctional policy and practice, as well as the treatment of women and Indigenous peoples in the justice system.


About the Association

The Australasian Institute of Judicial Administration (AIJA) is a research and educational institute associated with Monash University. It is funded by the Law, Crime and Community Safety Council (LCCSC) and also from subscription income from its membership.

The principal objectives of the Institute include research into judicial administration and the development and conduct of educational programmes for judicial officers, court administrators and members of the legal profession in relation to court administration and judicial systems.

Conference Managers

Please contact the team at Conference Design with any questions regarding the conference.
Photography Credits: Destination NSW, Paul Foley, Bridge Climb Sydney
© 2015 - 2016 Conference Design Pty Ltd