From the Contra Costa County Probation Department:
Contra Costa County’s Probation Department launched one of the first comprehensive mobile probation services programs in the state. The program will enable the Department to provide pretrial services, conduct client interviews and better engage with the community.
In May 2022, through a partnership with Contra Costa Superior Court, the Probation Department purchased three sprinter-style recreation vans that serve as mobile offices for our Probation and Pretrial Services programs and enhance the Department’s community outreach efforts.
Vans are equipped with fully functioning workstations, allowing deputy probation officers the ability to deliver services traditionally conducted in an office setting. On weekdays, one of the vans is stationed in front of the A.F. Bray Court Building in downtown Martinez, providing clients the opportunity to check in with probation personnel immediately following their court appearance.
This innovative approach eliminates clients’ need to travel to their local probation office to satisfy a court requirement or receive needed services. Mobile service delivery can potentially engage clients effectively and efficiently, saving them money, time, and other resources.
“Delivering services in the community allows Probation to better engage with clients, which reduces barriers and ultimately increases their chances for success,” said Chief Probation Officer Esa Ehmen-Krause.
Providing mobile services also upholds the Probation Department’s commitment to robust community engagement. The vans have quickly become a recognized presence at community events, allowing probation personnel to partner with community-based organizations and provide care packages to the people we serve. Additionally, Probation can provide services in real-time to clients who face hardships navigating the justice system and accessing community resources.
Probation is also planning outreach to the County’s unsheltered residents and those facing housing instability, visiting clients at their locations to provide a multitude of services.