Justice & Corrections
Social workers who work in justice and corrections can be found in courts, rape crisis centers, police departments, and correctional facilities.
In correctional facilities, the focus is on rehabilitation. Social workers may plan and provide drug and alcohol addiction treatment, life skills and basic competency training, and therapy to help offenders function once they are released into the community.
Social workers can be probation and parole officers, arranging for services after an offender is released, such as finding a group home residence, remedial classes, job training, addictions treatment, counseling, child care, and transportation. These activities generally help raise a client’s independence and self-esteem.
Social workers may also be involved in restitution programs, or victim assistance services. They may serve the court as expert witnesses or work in partnership with attorneys. In police departments, social workers may help with domestic disputes or provide trauma and critical incident services to enforcement officers.
Social work activities in corrections are diverse, as are the clients, affording the chance to develop and use a broad range of skills. Corrections and justice is a field where a social worker can focus on rehabilitation and the constructive use of authority.
• Police departments
• Victim services programs