Although diversion is a proven tool to strengthen the criminal justice system in Kansas, it is severely underutilized by Kansas prosecutors.
Diversion programs grant individuals the opportunity to serve alternative sentences instead of being convicted of a crime or being sentenced to jail. Some alternatives include:
Diversion makes communities safer and stronger. It saves taxpayer dollars, reduces overcrowding in jails and prisons, and strengthens families.
Diversion is severely underutilized in Kansas.
Despite the resounding evidence that diversion offers better outcomes for Kansas communities and families than prison, county prosecutors simply don’t utilize it. In fact, Kansas prosecutors use diversion at an average rate of 5%, which is only half the national average.
State law gives prosecutors nearly unrestricted discretion in how they manage diversion in their respective counties. Kansas prosecutors drastically reduce the number of diversions that take place in Kansas by creating diversion policies that are confusing, expensive, and difficult to navigate.