SANCTION, TREATMENT, ASSESSMENT, REVOCATION AND TRANSITION (START) CENTER
In mid-December 2005, Community, Counseling, and Correctional Services, Inc. (CCCS) began providing service in the Sanction, Treatment, Assessment, Revocation, and Transition (START) Center. This began as a 3-year pilot project between the Montana Department of Corrections (MDOC) and CCCS. Following the initial 3-year period, MDOC solicited proposals for a permanent assessment/sanction center and CCCS was the successful bidder.
START formerly operated out of a retrofitted forensic unit on the state hospital campus at Warm Springs, Montana, with an 80-bed capacity. A new $12.3 million, flagship, state-of-the-art facility was completed in August 2010. The new facility, located 6 miles northeast of Anaconda off Highway 48, has a 142 bed capacity plus an additional 10 beds for special needs.
The program offers an assessment/sanction center for adult males who have violated conditions of community placement including pre-release, parole, or probation. Since launching in 2005, START has maintained a 77 percent successful prison diversion rate, topping its initial goal of 50 percent.
START provides the security needed to hold offenders accountable for violating terms of placement while offering the assessment and relapse prevention services necessary to appropriately match needs with resources and determine whether continued community (and less costly) placement is possible or if the offender requires placement in a secure facility. MDOC's experience is that a short-term sanction serves as an effective wake-up call for the offender in violation of community placement requirements. The program has an average length of stay of 30 days with a projected maximum of 60-90 days depending on the needs of the individual offender and the determination of MDOC.
Sanction and revocation admissions serving over 14 days will typically be assessed during the first week of their confinement for treatment, program and aftercare needs. Intake assessment tools include the following:
After the initial screening and assessment has been completed an offender may be assigned to one or more of the following programs according to needs assessment.
In addition to the above programs a non-denominational Religious Coordinator visits the facility on a weekly basis. Also, offenders not precluded from manual labor due to medical or other reasons are assigned to a work program, placed on our work roster and rotated through various facility work assignments.
Supervised dayroom and yard recreation is permitted during scheduled times when offenders are not attending groups or work assignments.
The security staff provides direct supervision care seven days a week twenty-four hours a day. Offender pat searches, cell searches, area searches and inspections are conducted on a routine and random basis. All offenders are required to submit UA samples at intake and on a random basis during their confinement in the facility. A minimum of seven official counts are conducted daily. At least one of the seven daily counts is a stand-up count. Offenders are returned to their cells and the facility is placed on lockdown status for official and emergency counts and from 10:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. Census checks are conducted on a random basis as needed by the Security Supervisor. Offenders are confined to the facility and escorts outside of the facility typically require direct staff supervision and full restraints. The facility is equipped with ten mental health beds that can also be utilized for housing offenders requiring closer supervision such as those awaiting disciplinary interventions or transfer to a more secure facility. Disciplinary reports utilize violation codes adopted from the Montana State Prison disciplinary policy.
The only items of personal property that are authorized into the START facility through the admission process are the following:
START's Case Managers screen all intakes for placement in START facility programs, possible community placement and aftercare programs if eligible. In order to provide effective services it is extremely helpful to receive as much information about the offender as quickly as possible. Please provide the following paperwork with all placements:
If possible, we would also like to receive:
Revocation referrals include offenders whose community placement have been revoked. Revocations may be confined to the START facility from 10 to 120 days. During this time period offenders are expected to maintain clear conduct and participate in program and work assignments. Facility case managers will attempt to salvage a community placement for eligible offenders. Failure to follow program recommendations and/or excessive or major disciplinary violations may result in program termination and the transfer of the offender to the Montana State Prison.
Sanction referrals includes offenders whose community placement has not been revoked, but they have received a sanction to the START facility for a pre-determined time period as a result of a formal type of disciplinary hearing. Sanctions of 20 days or less may be imposed, however sanctions in excess of 20 days must be approved by the Community Corrections Administrator. Sanctioned offenders are also expected to maintain clear conduct and participate in program and work assignments. Sanctioned offenders will be returned to their previous status or program assignment upon completion of the sanction. Failure to follow START program recommendations and/or excessive or major disciplinary violations may result in additional formal disciplinary action which may include program termination, revocation and the transfer of the offender to the Montana State Prison. Special conditions and/or limitations concerning sanction length may apply to certain classes of offenders such as probationers.
Recent additional placements have included offenders who quit pre-release or other treatment programs, MASC Diversions, and Holds including offenders awaiting a bed date in treatment and/or pre-release centers.
Please notify the START Case Managers of screening results for community placement. The case managers will complete discharge summaries on all offenders and forward the summaries to the offenderís program discharge destination. The summaries include; assessment results, program recommendations/participation/evaluation/completion or failure reports, disciplinary results and any other information pertinent to the offenderís overall program participation and placement destination. If there is any other information you would like to see included in the discharge summary please contact us with your requests and/or suggestions.
Transportation and Placement
Transportation to and from the facility is provided by CCCS when an offender completes programming; it includes return to communities albeit parole, ISP, pre-release. The provision of this transportation within the context of the operations contract translate into tremendous cost savings for MDOC and ultimately the taxpayer. The contract provider is responsible for all transport services thereby shifting the cost and human resource strain of providing this service.
Administration and Program Staff
A dedicated team of staff distinguished by both education and experience provide services at START. CCCS has carefully selected a diverse, professional staff to ensure that offenders receive the most effective environment for correctional programming and community transitional services.
This page was last updated on 08/07/14.