Defender Statistics Essay

651 words - 3 pages

WHAT IS THE STATUS OF DEFENDER DATA
Before defender leaders start collecting and implementing core statistical elements and use it to report their work, it is important for them to understand some of the basic tenants behind research and data and arguments we usually hear about defender data collection. Defenders have posed a variety of arguments against using the case statistics in an evaluation of office and attorney performance. First, defenders rightly argue that no two cases are alike, suggesting that techniques that combine cases for statistical purposes neglect essential differences. Second, defenders have pointed to the wide variation in defender offices and practices; ...view middle of the document...

However, the reason why it is difficult to engage in this type of study is due to the absence of standardized data among and across jurisdictions. Without the presence of standardized data, it is difficult to make comparisons. The collection of the basic descriptive statistics described in this Toolkit is of value because it will be used to in conjunction with the data that is currently being gathered by defenders to establish a standardized set of variables to evaluate and compare jurisdictions regardless of the jurisdictional differences. While no statistical standard for a “good” defender office exists, professional standards can certainly be used as a relative yardstick for defender performance.
The growing focus on using research to develop and implement programs that improve outcomes for client’s in criminal defense needs to be improved. Although, defenders may not be have the research capacity, or the funding available to hire a researcher, or the ability to partner with universities to assist with the researcher to create evidence based practices, they can collect and use basic...

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