Moral Reconation Therapy—MRT® in Community Corrections
MRT has been used in community corrections since 1989. MRT is a SAMHSA NREPP registered program. It has been implemented in numerous ways. Some community corrections agencies have contracted with government to begin implementation of MRT with offenders prior to their release. Then, as part of an aftercare component, the released offenders complete MRT as a parole stipulation. Some community corrections agencies that house offenders in an alternative to incarceration use MRT as their only treatment. In addition, many halfway houses, restitution centers, and day reporting centers use MRT. Finally, many private probation/parole supervision firms conduct MRT for offenders assigned to them.
MRT groups, in which participants present their MRT homework assigned in each MRT step, are typically held once a week in community corrections. The number of participants in each MRT group typically varies between 12-15 participants. An MRT-trained facilitator (usually a counselor) conducts each group meeting according to guidelines outlined in the training. Clients in the program each have an MRT workbook — How To Escape Your Prison. Basic MRT has 12 steps, with a general written discussion of each step in the workbook, followed by the homework exercises and requirements.
Because MRT is objective and every MRT group operates in the same manner, any trained MRT facilitator is able to step in to any MRT group when necessary and continue the group without problems. Numerous MRT programs in community corrections have collected outcome data. All have reported significantly lower recidivism and lower disciplinary infractions as well as higher rates of employment. A Spanish version of the workbook is available along with both Spanish and English versions of the book on audio CDs for participants with poor reading skills.
All MRT groups are open-ended. This means that new clients can enter a group at any time and be incorporated into the program. Research shows that MRT works equally well with male and female offenders.
Basic MRT training is required for all MRT facilitators. Call CCI (901) 360-1564 for information.
Length of Program/Completion Rate:
In community correction settings the average (mean) number of group meetings is variable depending on location and the type of program. In general, most offenders complete all MRT steps in 20-30 group sessions. Program completion rates have varied between 60%-99%. The mean completion rate in community corrections, not counting probation, is about 65%.
Other Program Components Typically Used:
Community corrections-based programs that use MRT usually conduct several other cognitive-behavioral programs based on individual needs. These are: