Specialty Programs

Specialty Programs

​Livingston County’s Specialty Programs reflect community collaboration to address improved outcomes for court involved community members:

Community Corrections: Support for the court in assessment of risks and needs for those who commit non-violent crimes, delivery of services while individuals are in jail, such as group classes in substance abuse and sober living, and  support and limited funding for treatment and other services.
 
Swift and Sure Sanctions: A new program where individuals on probation must follow all of the rules of their probation, or face immediate sanctions, including short term jail stays. This is for those who habitually violate the terms of their probation either by testing positive for use of drugs or alcohol (which has always been addressed immediately in Livingston County) or by missing drug tests, missing appointments with their Probation Officer, or  not participating in treatment or services. Although these violations are viewed seriously, resources have been limited to be able to follow up on each violation. Research shows that immediate follow-up produces results in reduced violations, which in turn reduces likelihood of recidivism because probationers are actually accessing the services they need.  Livingston County now has grant funding to expand resources for follow-up.
 
Model Court: A program affiliated with the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges that brings together representatives of community organizations and interested private practitioners to identify and implement improvements to Child Protection and Juvenile Justice cases.
 
Safe Havens Supervised Parenting Time and Safe Exchange (The Family Connection Center): Livingston County received a $400,000 grant to establish a supervised parenting time and safe exchange center for families with a history of domestic violence. The grant was to the County, and the collaboration includes the Court, LACASA, and the Livingston Family Center. The grant allowed the county to have an important resource available for families. When there is domestic violence, there are concerns about the safety of children and adult victims of violence. These safety concerns are especially present at the time that a relationship is ending, because there are changes in the power and control within the family, and the victim of violence is in more of a position of power, which can be very provocative for the perpetrator of violence. The Family Connection Center is set up to support safety during this time. The victim (or “survivor”​) of violence does not come into contact with the perpetrator. The facility is set up so that they enter from different parking areas, through different doors, at different times, and do not see or even hear each other while at the center. The policies are carefully designed, in consultation with our national technical assistants, to support safety, and resources are devoted to training staff to monitor visits closely, while not intruding on the time that parents spend with children. The center also conducts safe exchanges, which allows parents who have concerns to use the facility, staff, and policies for exchange of children for parenting time. Many parents plan to either rely on friends or relatives for these services, or believe that using a public place, such as a police station parking lot, fast food or gas station parking lot, will support safety. The reality is that those public places are not monitored and conflicts that negatively affect children or adult victims can still occur. The Family Connection Center is an excellent alternative, and because of grant funding, is available at no charge or reduced charges depending on the case details. The grant also offers other resources to the community, including training sessions with national speakers, to help professionals who deal with families, such as mental health providers, attorneys, and agency staff, to better understand the trauma associated with domestic violence, and the nature and dynamics of domestic violence.