Module 3: Collaborative Structure and Joint Ownership

This visual indicates where Collaborative Structure and Joint Ownership fits in the Transition from Jail to Community model. It is one of five key system elements that must be in place for the TJC model to work.

Collaboration and Joint Ownership

Welcome to Collaborative Structure and Joint Ownership. This module is designed to provide practical information to assist you in developing a reentry system where collaboration and joint ownership permeate the transitional process.

A central component of the Transition from Jail to Community (TJC) model is that reintegrating individuals from jail to the community is the collective responsibility of both the jail system and the community. The transition process is too complex for one agency or organization to do alone. One agency cannot provide the range of services necessary to maximize opportunities for behavioral change. A systems approach to jail transition requires a collaborative structure that can secure participation from key partners, provide focus for the initiative, maintain momentum, and empower members of the collaboration.

“Collaboration has been challenging in building the reentry system in Denver; trying to get everyone on the same page is difficult, when everyone (both public and private) has been doing their own thing for so long. However, the benefits have outweighed the negatives. Collaboration allows for multiple perspectives, experiences, and influences to enrich the services available to people transitioning from jail to community, and urges us to think through the impact of our work and our clients and all of our partners.”

Shelley Siman, Program Coordinator
Denver Crime Prevention and Control Commission, Denver, CO

Ask yourself what interventions are needed to address the barriers your jail population faces as they return to the community. Does your agency have the capacity and resources to address them all?

  • Affordable housing
  • Cognitive decision-making
  • Educational services
  • Employment
  • Family reunification
  • Financial services
  • Health care services
  • Mental health services
  • Mentoring
  • Substance abuse treatment
  • Vocational training

Effective transition strategies rely on collaboration and information sharing among jail- and community-based partners and joint ownership of both the problem and the solution. Given that many of the people who exit jails are already involved with multiple social service and criminal justice agencies, a collaborative approach is essential to tackling jail transition. In addition, the scarcity of resources to manage this large population demands such an approach to avoid duplication or conflict in the delivery of valuable interventions. This module has four parts and will take between 25 and 30 minutes to complete.

Recommended audience for this module:

  • Sheriffs
  • Jail administrators
  • Reentry coordinators
  • Community corrections
  • County board members
  • Community providers
  • Probation officers
  • Pretrial services staff
  • Policymakers
  • Other system stakeholders
  • Judges and Officers of the Court

Module Objectives

This module is intended to help you learn the key processes to collaborate across government, nongovernment, and community-based organizations. Such collaboration allows all parties involved to maximize the impact intended by the TJC model through shared understanding and aligned actions. It will also guide you in structuring your collaboration to oversee and complete the work of implementing the TJC model.

This module includes:

  • Understanding the benefits of collaboration and joint ownership
  • Identifying partnering agencies
  • Determining each party's responsibilities
  • Structuring your TJC collaborative
  • Developing long-term partnerships with community agencies

There are four sections in this module:

  1. What Is Collaboration?
  2. Formalizing the Collaborative Structure
  3. Developing a Reentry Implementation Committee
  4. Terms Used in the Field

This module also includes templates, links, field notes, case studies, and other materials to help you expedite the process in your community and to highlight how TJC partnerships have developed across the country.

By the end of this module you will be able to do the following:

  • Identify the diverse and multiple partners in your community including existing advisory committees.
  • Coordinate a collaborative planning process.
  • Organize a reentry implementation committee of partnering agencies.
  • Develop shared goals and principles.
  • Draw upon excellent work being done in the field.