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Making Facilities Safe

Public safety and the safety of the youths, staff and visitors is the primary responsibility of confinement facilities. PbS standards and performance data focus on management practices that promote safety and wellbeing and minimize the risks of harm.

PbS addresses safety in all domains of facility operations, programs and the experiences of youths, staff and families. PbS goals and standards are intentionally written to guide continuous improvement; there is no pass/fail but the opportunity over time to make significant changes and ensure the safety of the public, youths, staff and visitors. The goals and standards promote use practices research and/or experience have shown are most likely to make facilities safe and reducing or eliminating practices known to decrease safety.

To help participants monitor and diagnose safety issues, PbS provides goals and standards in three related areas: Safety, Order and Security.

Safety Goal:
To engage in management practices that promote the safety and well-being of youths, staff, family, volunteers and visitors.
  1. Protect youths, staff, families, volunteers and visitors from intentional and accidental injuries.
  2. Protect youths, staff, families, volunteers and visitors from external safety risks including natural disasters and communicable diseases.
  3. Reduce harm from the use of restraints.
  4. Reduce harm from the use of isolation.
  5. Protect staff and youths from fear and victimization.
Order Goal:
To establish clear expectations of behavior and an accompanying strengths-based system of accountability for youths and staff that promote mutual respect, self-discipline and order by recognizing positive actions and contributions.
  1. Maximize opportunities for youths to practice responsible behavior.
  2. Ensure facility rules are equitable and fair.
  3. Minimize the use of restrictive and coercive means of responding to disorder.
  4. Maximize opportunities for participation in activities and programs.
  5. Provide a robust programming schedule of supervised, structured activities and personal development opportunities.
Security Goal:
To protect public safety and to provide a safe environment for youths and staff, an essential condition for learning and treatment to be effective.
  1. Prevent unauthorized exit from the facility and maintain custody of youths admitted to the facility.
  2. Prevent introduction of contraband into the facility and minimize access to contraband within the facility.

PbS has been a partner in assisting this facility to become a dynamic work environment that is not satisfied with maintaining the status quo.

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PbS uniquely offers participants outcome measures aligned with research and best practices to manage facility and program operations, programs and services in a timely manner so leaders and staff can continuously monitor conditions of confinement and quality of life.