Probation staff attitudes toward substance abuse treatment and evidence-based practices

Steven Belenko, Ingrid D. Johnson, Faye S. Taxman, Traci Rieckmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


Given the substantial need for and relatively low access to effective substance use disorder treatment for people on probation, it is critical to understand organizational and staff attitudes that may hinder or facilitate treatment linkage and willingness to adopt evidence-based practices. This study used survey data from a large county probation department to assess staff members’ attitudes and perceptions regarding their organization’s climate for innovation, role of substance use disorder treatment, support for evidence-based treatment, and organizational barriers to change. Probation staff were open to incorporating treatment into probation supervision, expressed support for rehabilitation models, and agreed that they would adopt innovations if required or they found them to be appealing. However, they expressed some concerns about the level of agency support for innovation and collaboration. Attitudes and perceptions varied by staff characteristics. Implications for expanding organizational change and adoption of evidence-based treatment practices in probation are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)313-333
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2018


  • Community corrections
  • Drug treatment
  • Evidencebased practices
  • Probation staff
  • Staff attitudes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'Probation staff attitudes toward substance abuse treatment and evidence-based practices'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this