The month of May marked one year since the Department of Justice released the Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) standards for lockups. The PREA standards for lockups apply to any facility that has one or more holding cells and detain individuals for any length of time; they are designed to prevent, detect, and respond to sexual abuse in confinement. While there are no federal financial penalties for agencies that do not comply with the standards, many agencies are choosing to work toward compliance to help with risk and liability management.
More information on PREA is available through IACP’s Elimination of Sexual Abuse in Confinement Initiative. Below are additional resources for agencies considering the PREA standards for lockups.
Standard Specific Resources
Facilities that detain people overnight will need to conduct an independent audit once every three years (if you do not detain overnight, you are not required to audit). The audit instrument for lockups will not be available until later in 2013, however the audit instrument for jails and prisons is available now and can be used as a guide for lockups. Further information on the audit instrument and process is available through the PREA Resource Center hosted webinar “Introduction to the PREA Audit Instrument”, which will be available on their site after June 13th.
There are several standards that include proactive outreach and planning with local victim services and advocacy groups. The PREA Resource Center, in partnership with Just Detention International and IACP, is hosting a webinar on “PREA and Victim Services in Police Lockups” on June 27th.
Compliance Funding Resources
Agencies seeking additional assistance for complying with the PREA standards should consider BJA’s funding opportunity; FY 2013 PREA Program: Demonstration Projects to Establish “Zero Tolerance” Cultures for Sexual Assault in Correctional Facilities. The deadline to apply for this grant is July 5th at 11:59PM EST.
Training and Technical Assistance Resources
State and regional law enforcement associations (for chiefs, law enforcement planners, accreditation managers, and other law enforcement leaders) can request no-cost training on the PREA standards for lockups from the IACP. Individual agencies seeking additional technical assistance, such as help with policy review and agency self-assessment, can submit requests to the PREA Resource Center.