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U.S. Department of Justice: Assessing the Effectiveness of the Second Chance Act Grant Program – A Phased Evaluation

U.S. Department of Justice: Assessing the Effectiveness of the Second Chance Act Grant Program – A Phased Evaluation

Deadline: 26 May 2020

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Office of Justice Programs (OJP), National Institute of Justice (NIJ) is seeking applications for funding to support an evaluation of the Second Chance Act grant program. This program furthers the Department’s mission by advancing the body of knowledge on promising practices in offender reentry and to inform the development of more effective federal and other reentry-specific initiatives.

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With this solicitation, NIJ requests proposals for research to evaluate the effectiveness of the Second Chance Act (SCA) grant program in improving reentry and reducing recidivism. To support this effort, NIJ will fund a phased research evaluation strategy that details and measures the implementation, processes, outcomes, costs, and impacts of the grants awarded under the SCA grant program. This solicitation supports DOJ Strategic Objective 3.1: Combat violent crime, promote safe communities, and uphold the rights of victims of crime.

The three-phased approach includes:

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Phase 1: Formative Evaluation. This phase should not exceed a six-month performance period.
Phases 2 and 3: Development and Submission of Proposal for SCA Grant Program Evaluation (Phase 2) and Completion of the SCA Grant Program Evaluation (Phase 3). As combined, the two phases should not exceed a 4.5-year performance period.
The primary goal of this solicitation is to examine the effectiveness of grants used by the Department of Justice, specifically the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), to support offender reentry and recidivism reduction programs at the State, local, Tribal, and Federal levels. The objective will be to determine whether the selected SCA grantees accomplished the overall goals of the Second Chance Act. Findings from this research will assist State, local, and Tribal jurisdictions to promote safe communities, and reduce recidivism among former offenders as they successfully reintegrate into the community.

OJP Priority Areas

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In FY 2020, and in addition to executing any statutory prioritization that may be applicable, OJP may give priority consideration to applications as follows:

Applications that address specific challenges that rural communities face.
Applications that demonstrate that the individuals who are intended to benefit from the requested grant reside in high-poverty areas or persistent-poverty counties.
Applications that offer enhancements to public safety in economically distressed communities (Qualified Opportunity Zones).
Funding Information

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Estimated maximum dollar amount for each award: Up to $1.5 million
Total amount anticipated to be awarded under solicitation: $1.5 million
Period of performance start date: January 1, 2021
Period of performance duration: 60-months
Eligibility Criteria

County governments
Special district governments
State governments
Nonprofits that do not have a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
City or township governments
For profit organizations other than small businesses
Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)
Public and State controlled institutions of higher education
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