What We Do
As a non-profit, community-based organization with embedded operations in San Francisco’s justice system, San Francisco Pretrial Diversion Project’s (SF Pretrial) mission represents a commitment to building power in communities. Our clients are actively justice-involved, and are referred to our services rather than being subjected to money bail, pretrial incarceration, and/or prosecution.
The “presumption of innocence” is a foundational principle of our work: our programs are centered on a compassionate, non-judgmental approach to relationship-building and the respect that each client deserves. Further, our non-profit status allows us to maintain neutrality in an otherwise “adversarial” criminal justice system, and our position as an independent intermediary has bolstered trust with clients and local partners alike. Our primary objectives are to provide accurate information to the court and to sustain client success through individualized supportive services.
SF Pretrial’s release programs are, at their essence, alternatives to money bail. Rather than putting up a financial guarantee or remaining in jail custody, clients can be referred to one of our three non-monetary release programs. Each program provides a different intensity of supervision and treatment, which will depend on a client’s background and needs. Our release programs provide clients with individualized treatment plans, incremental and achievable goals, and proportionate levels of monitoring by our staff.
Own Recognizance Program (OR)
OR staff prepare essential case materials to support judicial determinations regarding pretrial release. In addition, they oversee monitoring and supervision for two levels of pretrial release for clients with misdemeanor and felony cases:
- No Active Supervision (OR-NAS): clients receive court reminder calls
- Minimum Supervision (OR-MS): clients receive court reminder calls and check in with our office twice per week by phone
Assertive Case Management Program (ACM)
The ACM program is geared towards higher needs clients with felony and misdemeanor cases. This program provides clients with more intensive, structured supervision and more frequent, in-person contacts. Further, program staff build treatment plans and make referrals to community programs, which serve as supplemental sources of care and treatment throughout the client’s relationship with our organization. These referrals may relate to substance use, behavioral health, education, and employment.
In-Custody Referral Program (ICR)
When clients have serious charges and/or a lengthier history of legal misconduct, the courts will often contact our ICR program. This program coordinates immediate placement in an in-patient or out-patient treatment program, which gives the court greater assurances that clients with the most significant barriers will receive a timely and commensurate treatment response. After clients are referred to the ICR program by the court, interviews are conducted to assess which community program(s) would benefit a prospective client.
Based on the assessment interviews, the ICR team will make recommendations to the court whether to grant or deny release, which community programs have placement available, and which conditions of release should apply.
Pretrial Diversion (PTD)
Primary Caregiver Diversion (PCD)
Neighborhood Court (NCT)
PTD, PCD and NCT diversion programs represent community models where instead of being prosecuted, clients who are referred to these programs by the Court will be diverted to a community program where they will be assigned a program, upon the completion of which their case will be dismissed.
Street Environmental Services (SESP)
SESP and P20 are diversion programs that provide alternatives to monetary fines. These diversion programs will assign referred clients to projects of street beautification and cleaning to work off their fines, and upon completion of their projects, their fines will be dismissed.
Veteran’s Court (VJC)
Parole Reentry Court (PRC)
VJC and PRC diversion programs provide alternative court models that are focused on treatment, housing and supportive services rather than prosecution, trial and sentencing. In each of these programs, each court appearance is a meeting about treatment progress instead of a step towards trial and sentencing that one would see in the traditional court model.
SF Pretrial’s diversion programs are non-financial, community-based alternatives to prosecutions and fines.
SF Pretrial’s in-custody programs provide placement and treatment programs for our in-custody clients, who are referred to us by the Courts.
Roads to Recovery
Roads to Recovery and Sisters are in-custody programs that aim to address substance abuse among the male and female incarcerated population (respectively). Unlike our release and diversion programs, Roads and Sisters work with both pretrial and sentenced populations, facilitating groups, meetings, and discussions surrounding the topic of substance abuse and recovery.
Our Discharge Planning program works with high-volume arrestees to break the cycle of justice involvement. It is focused on developing reentry plans and referring clients to targeted services to secure healthier and improvement-focused post-release plans.
Affordable Care Act Enrollment
Our Affordable Care Act (ACA) Enrollment Program assesses healthcare status for our incarcerated clients and assist those who are not yet enrolled with the enrollment process.