Setting Program Goals

In designing a new prosecutor-led diversion program, it is important for a prosecutor’s office to clearly define what the goals of the program are.  Such a goal statement can be critical to educating relevant audiences (funders, criminal justice partners, and the general public) about what a program is attempting to accomplish, informing further program design, and setting the stage for effective evaluation of the program. These goals should also be incorporated into any materials produced to inform participants and other community stakeholders about the program and the reasons for it.

Offices usually focus on one or more of the following goals:

  • Saving criminal justice resources and reducing criminal caseloads
  • Reduce costs of prosecution and punishment in order to utilize resources for more serious crimes
  • Connecting offenders to necessary services or community-based programs
  • Incorporating make whole provisions into diversion programing
  • Reducing recidivism
  • Helping individuals to avoid the collateral consequences of a conviction