Utilizing CRCSP eliminates the need for probation officers to spend time referring clients to agencies and having to verify the service hours themselves, which promotes efficiency. Because of our unique position in the community, United Way has strong agency partnerships where clients can conduct community service across the community. CRCSP refers the clients to the agencies, verifies the hours directly with the agencies and reports to the probation officers upon completion.
In the last fiscal year; July 1, 2022 – June 30, 2023, CRCSP served a record 332 clients. This is the highest number of clients served since at least 2016. One of the reasons for this growth is our expanded support to courtroom judges. CRCSP is now present in the courtroom for problem-solving courts including Veterans Court and Young Adult Courts. By being in the courtroom during proceedings, CRCSP can conduct intake and assign clients to agencies immediately when they are ordered community service – removing a step and barrier to starting to serve.
CRCSP is excited to share that we received a second grant from United Way Worldwide’s Ride United program for use through June 30, 2024. The grant allows us to schedule and pay for Lyft rides for CRCSP clients with barriers to transportation so they can get to and from their community service agency and to UWM offices for intake as necessary. We resumed offering this service effective July 17, 2023.
We offer transportation to and from agency sites through Lyft for those with legitimate transportation needs so they can complete their service hours. This program helps remove barriers for clients, which can reduce recidivism, probation violations and possible jail time. We first started offering Lyft rides in September 2021 and expended all funds in February 2023; during this time, we provided 452 rides to help clients complete community service.
Ultimately, CRCSP provides a positive outlet for clients to contribute to the community. It provides an alternative to incarceration, satisfies the community’s desire for retribution and may offer relief from guilt for the offender.
Note: People assigned to community service should contact the CRCSP program manager to schedule an intake appointment. During intake, the manager will assess transportation needs to identify if a Lyft ride is necessary and appropriate. The CRCSP manager organizes all Lyft rides. In order to be fiscally responsible with the funds available, UWM has implemented a “one miss” rule, as Lyft still charges UWM a fee if the rider misses the ride. If a ride has been lined up, but the person does not show, they will no longer be able to utilize the service. Riders who call to cancel a ride prior to arrival of the driver will still be eligible. Rides may only be used for community service-related activities.