Use of the tool
The LS/CMI provides a structure for assessors to:
- consider the likelihood of further offending using a score based level of risk/ needs (these levels range from very low to very high - based on 8 scales with 43 items in total);
- identify an individual's needs which can then be targeted/ addressed via treatment or intervention. These needs include those which are criminogenic (directly related to offending) and non-criminogenic (not necessarily related to offending but can have an impact upon the success of interventions if not also addressed) such as health & accommodation issues.
- Identify responsivity issues. These are characteristics of the individual being supervised that could affect how he or she responds to intervention (e.g. cultural or gender issues)
- Identify whether any positive aspects or strengths exist. Any identified strengths can be drawn upon and fostered in the design of case management plans and plans for re-entry into the community.
All of the above provides comprehensive information to help make decisions about such matters as:
- the required level of supervision or intervention;
- which programmes/ interventions to engage an individual on.
The case management function also allows for ongoing assessment of the progress, or otherwise, an individual is making and, where needed, allow for the formulation of a risk management plan for those identified as presenting a risk of serious harm.
The version of LS/ CMI adapted for use in Scotland will allow this single instrument to replace a variety of risk assessment methods currently in use across Scotland including the LSI-R and RA1-4.
Who will use LS/CMI?
In community settings the LS/CMI will be used by criminal justice social work staff who:
- conduct assessments to inform pre-sentence reports which provide advice to the Court on the suitability of community disposals;
- work with adult offenders subject to statutory supervision. That is, offenders who are being supervised via a release licence (from prison) or those subject to a Probation Order or Community Payback Order with a supervision requirement.
In prison settings the LS/CMI will be used by prison based social work staff working with adult prisoners who will be subject to post-release supervision.
Who can administer the LS/CMI?
Only individuals who have attended and passed a 5 day Users Training Course will be being permitted to administer the risk assessment content of the LS/CMI. Delegates are assessed both during and after training to ensure they demonstrate an understanding of and competence in the use of the risk/ needs assessment elements of the tool.
The 5 day training course is primarily aimed at:
- Court Report authors -: staff who are responsible for conducting assessments to inform court reports;
- Case Managers -: staff who are responsible for conducting assessments in order to devise and oversee case management plans for individuals subject to statutory supervision (i.e. offenders who have been made subject to a Probation Order or Community Payback Order with a supervision requirement; prisoners who will be subject to supervision upon release from custody)
- Members of staff who are responsible for authorising and assuring the quality of assessments & case management plans (most likely to be 1st line managers).