Offender Risk Management Correctional Strategy, ORMCS

 
The Offender Risk Management Correctional Strategy suggests, essentially, that no two offenders are alike in terms of what factors may have precipitated their offending, the 'risk' they may present for future offending, the 'needs' that they may have and in terms of their motivation to address those needs and work towards changing their lifestyles.
 
The Offender Risk Management Correctional Strategy aims to assess and document these differences so that:
 
  1. Offenders can be managed more effectively according to the risk/needs profiles they represent. In other words, they can be managed 'differentially' not just 'homogeneously' and, therefore, in a way that both enhances security within correctional facilities and gives direction to efforts at possible reintegration.
  2. Correctional Officers, through this increased understanding of the risk/needs profiles of the offenders they manage, can become more active and focused in their interactions, thereby once again enhancing security within correctional facilities and contributing more directly to the challenge of offender reintegration.
An effective correctional strategy of Risk Management, by necessity, has to have multiple and mutually interacting components or aspects that work towards a common aim. It hinges on how well members understand their new roles, have the skills to execute them, and have the commitment to sustain and improve their level of professionalism.
 
The following are components for an effective Offender Risk Management Correctional Strategy:
 
  1. Initial Reception/Orientation and Objective Security Classification of Offenders
  2. Unit Management
  3. Assessment of the Risk/Needs of Offenders
  4. The Correctional Treatment Plan
  5. Case Management Towards Successful Reintegration
  6. Effective Program Development and Delivery

 

  1. Initial Reception/Orientation and Objective Security Classification of Offenders
Aims to begin formally assessing and observing offenders at the commencement of sentence, to determine their level and nature of immediate needs and concerns, orient them to the challenges they will face within the correctional environment, motivate them to take advantage of some of the opportunities provided to them, and assess their level of risk.
 
This initial "Security Classification" of offenders is then also tied to varying levels of access to meaningful 'privileges' within the correctional setting so that offenders are willing to earn these possible privileges and perceive some incentive to progress (in terms of their cooperativeness and involvement) from one level of security to the other (i.e., gradually changing their security status from maximum to minimum … and eventually to consideration for release).
 
2. Unit Management
 
This is a generally accepted model in modern correctional practice that aims to cluster offenders into smaller, more manageable groupings within a larger correctional setting so that there can be more effective deployment of active, dynamic security as an alternative to only passive, static security. The notion is that control of offenders is better achieved through the empowerment of line staff (COI-II CMO) and a normalised system of ‘interaction’ between members and offenders wherein there is direct supervision on a human-to-human level rather than simply the ‘guarding and disciplining’ of offenders.
 
3. The Correctional Treatment Plan
 
The Correctional Treatment Plan describes a ‘plan of action’ used by the Correctional Service to assist an offender to address his/her needs. This plan of action, often referred to as the Correctional Treatment Plan or Sentence Plan, is a detailed outline of the steps the offender can take, both in the shorter-term (6 to 12 months) and in the longer-term (12 months to end of sentence or early release) to begin to address his/her areas of difficulty and improve his/her chances of successful reintegration.
 
4. Case Management towards Successful Reintegration
 
Case Management is the process that takes place to help offenders execute their Correctional Plan. Primary responsibility to help support and guide the offender in this respect rests with an individual correctional officer assigned the role of Case Management Officer though other Unit Management members also assist with their observation and analysis of the offender’s behaviour on an ongoing basis. Critically, the CMO should get to know the offender, and their style, habits and patterns of behaviour, through regular interaction and the provision of supportive and directive counseling.
 
The following diagram summarizes the Offender Risk Management Correctional Strategy: