Probation Task Force To 'Move Aggressively' To Evaluate Hiring Practices

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A new task force formed to review the troubled Probation Department in Massachusetts will look at the entire judicial system. The bipartisan panel, appointed by the Supreme Judicial Court, aims to deliver an interim report in three months, and a final one in six months.

Speaking with WBUR's Deborah Becker, the leader of the task force, former state Attorney General Scott Harshbarger, said it's going to be complicated.

"In the short term the goal is to hit the ground running, move aggressively to evaluate existing hiring promotion practices, make recommendations as to how they can be improved to restore integrity, ensure it's fair, comprehensive, transparent, and more important, provides quality competent people for this vital public service," he said.

Harshbarger said the the goal of the task force is to produce material outcomes.

"We will produce a tangible set of recommendations that can be monitored, that can be evaluated — that not just we, but the public, can determine if there has been some measurable progress," he said.


This program aired on December 8, 2010.

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Deborah Becker Host/Reporter
Deborah Becker is a senior correspondent and host at WBUR. Her reporting focuses on mental health, criminal justice and education.



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