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ME Dept. of Corrections

Maine Department of CorrectionsChallenges

Prior to adopting CORIS, the Maine Department of Corrections (DOC) was using six distinct legacy systems to manage its offenders, be they juvenile or adult; be they in institutional care or under community supervision.

These systems had become increasingly disparate over the years and sharing information amongst stakeholders was difficult and time consuming.

For instance, community caseworkers collected case histories on their laptops, rather than a central database, and there was no mechanism for sharing information agency-wide. Data integrity had, in fact, been a particularly troublesome issue prior to adopting CORIS.

The DOC wanted a solution that offered field workers effective off-line capabilities—while maintaining data consistency and integrity in the on-line system.

The fact that the six computer systems didn’t comply with one another posed another significant challenge: that of tracking offenders over the course of their entire history with the Department.

“There was no effective, centralized means of managing information,” says Dave Packard, Agency IT Director. “The need to be able to globally query the system—and obtain a holistic view of offender profiles and program effectiveness—formed a large part of the impetus that got this project underway.”

Solution

The Maine DOC selected Abilis Solutions’ CORIS Offender Management System to support all prison services, community corrections and central office management. The result is a holistic or complete view of offender status and history.

“We now have a continuity of information that allows us to understand clients better. We can determine appropriate treatment and follow up on it,” said Packard.

CORIS provides the DOC with global-query capability: the web-based solution monitors all offenders and is accessible to all users: corrections officers, community workers, courts, family services and public-safety agencies.

CORIS is not a collection of independent modules. Nor is it a client-server or mainframe system that’s been web-enabled. CORIS was built from the ground up as a complete, integrated solution that, using Microsoft’s .NET web-based architecture, merges seamlessly with legacy systems.

CORIS is first and foremost an operational system. It was designed by users, for users. It manages four key areas of administration:

1. The Offender Profile: demographics, photos, security alerts, special medical needs, sentence calculation and automatic release-notification for victims.

2. Prison Management: security classification, housing, offender movement, job assignments, daily schedules and financial management.

3. Community-based Corrections: investigations, risk assessment, treatment plans and caseload management.

4. All administrative functions related to tracking, reporting and security.

CORIS is fully scalable and accommodates varying sizes of offender populations. One of the largest offender management operations in North America uses CORIS. Prior to its launch, CORIS underwent rigorous scalability testing in a Microsoft lab, having large volumes of offenders, users and metrics added to it. The solution scaled in a linear manner, directly in proportion to the capacity of the database and web-application servers.

“We now have a continuity of information that allows us to understand clients better.
We can determine appropriate treatment and follow up on it”

- Dave Packard, Agency IT Director

The Maine Department of Corrections adopted CORIS in three phases:

  • Basic offender-management capabilities
  • Classification, visitation, discipline, grievance and financials
  • Interfaces with Public Safety’s Criminal History Information System and the Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS)

When the first phase was rolled out, all six DOC legacy systems were migrated simultaneously. This was deemed feasible given Maine’s relatively small offender population.
 

Benefits

  • A fully scalable solution, accommodating varying sizes of offender populations
  • A complete offender profile spanning inmate management, institution management, community-based corrections and reporting and administration
  • Seamless communication across the agency
  • Simplified web-based deployment

Technologies and Partners

CORIS is a modern, web-based solution built on the Microsoft platform that includes .NET technology and a SQL Server database.