Dane County Continues Work to Improve the Criminal Justice System
January 28, 2016
Supervisor Paul Rusk (608) 249-9667 Supervisor Jeremy Levin (608) 577-9335
Work Group on Diversion Programs Appointed
Criminal justice system officials and community members have been named to an 11-member work group to review all adult and juvenile diversion programs. This is a next step in the ongoing effort to implement recommendations of the County Board’s three workgroups that were established and convened in 2015 to address criminal justice system reform.
The work group was appointed jointly by Supervisor Paul Rusk, Chair of the Public Protection and Judiciary Committee, and Supervisor Jeremy Levin, Chair of the Health and Human Needs Committee. The appointed members include:
District Attorney Ismael Ozanne,
Jail Administrator Captain Richelle Anhalt,
Public Defender Dorothea Watson,
Retired Judge Sarah O’Brien,
Dane County Jail Re-Entry Coordinator Jerome Dillard,
Juvenile Justice Services Manager Andre Johnson,
Retired Madison Police Captain Luis Yudice,
Retired Court Commissioner Todd Meurer,
Madison Area Urban Ministry Director Linda Ketchum,
Reverend Joe Baring, and
Paul Saeman, a member of MOSES.
Others who will participate with this work group as content-area experts are Clerk of Courts Carlo Esqueda, AODA Services Manager Todd Campbell, and Chief, Region 1, Regional Community Corrections Office Lance Wiersma.
“I am proud of the volume and quality of work accomplished last year by the three community-based work groups, and am delighted to be able to continue that effort with the Work Group on Diversion Programs,” said Supervisor Paul Rusk. “The members of this new work group bring a depth of experience and varied perspectives to the table. I look forward to both the process and results of this effort,” he added.
The charge to the Work Group on Diversion Programs is to:
- Review all current adult and juvenile diversion programs and the criteria for admission and successful completion;
- Develop an equitable framework to ensure access to existing diversion programs;
- Identify barriers to enrollment in and successful completion of the programs and make recommendations for improvements; and
- Develop a list of large, traditional organizations and smaller, neighborhood-specific, grassroots entities that can offer services to benefit the clients enrolled and contribute to the improvement of communities and the diverse populations within them.
“Diversion programs offer people a second chance,” said Supervisor Jeremy Levin. “We need to understand not only how to make these programs as effective as possible, but also to ensure that there is equity in who has access to that second chance, the completion rates, and the approach to providing services.”
The facilitator for the work group is Jim Moeser, who was the long-time Juvenile Court Administrator for Dane County. He will be assisted by John Bauman, the current Dane County Juvenile Court Administrator.