National Criminal Justice & Public Health Alliance

Background

In 2015, Human Impact Partners and the Vera Institute of Justice co-convened over 40 criminal justice advocates and public health practitioners from around the country at a first-of-its-kind national criminal justice and public health convening. In 2017 we reconvened the National CJPH Alliance, this time with more than 60 participants.

What we’ve done

Convenings and Collaborations

The convenings provided a space to build relationships between people working at the intersection of public health and criminal justice. Our ambitious agenda has been to work toward our vision for a justice system that improves population health and well-being at every step. We worked collaboratively and within our organizations on joint research, communications, policy, and community building goals to achieve that vision.

The 2017 Convening resulted in a commitment from Alliance members to work together on campaigns and policy change projects that advance the Vision by using the Workgroup materials or in other ways elevate the health voice and frame in criminal justice system reform discussions, and then to share lessons learned. Though the Alliance and its relationships have shifted, the work continues.

Alliance Workgroups

Coming out of the 2015 convening, we created workgroups to advance our collaborative work:

  • Narrative Workgroup: We have developed a transformative narrative about a justice system that creates social, economic, and political conditions that allows everyone to thrive — conditions that improve health and reduce contact with the criminal justice system at the same time. We also created a toolkit for how others can build their own transformative narrative in their communities.
  • #WeGotThis Workgroup: We identified 36 interventions and 25 policies that are concrete examples of public health practitioners collaborating with criminal justice actors or stakeholders to replace law enforcement responses with public health solutions. The result is Health Solutions Create Safety, a resource that people can use to advocate for funding health solutions at local and state levels.
  • Metrics Workgroup: We are creating case studies of organizations and agencies that have collected health and equity metrics to measure those outcomes of the criminal justice system. We believe that advancing indicators of health and equity in criminal justice contexts changes the conversation, monitors, and holds the criminal justice system accountable for health and equity impacts, and for communicating results.