PMO Statement: PREA Audit Instrument and Third Party Auditing Assistance Software
Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Standard 115.401(d) states, “The Department of Justice shall develop and issue an audit instrument that will provide guidance on the conduct of and contents of the audit.”
To fulfill this legal requirement, the Department of Justice (DOJ) developed an Audit Instrument for each set of PREA Standards— including Prisons and Jail Standards, Lockup Standards, Community Confinement Standards, and Juvenile Facility Standards—which include a series of guiding documents and tools that auditors are required to use when conducting an audit. The Audit Instrument is available in two forms, a paper-based audit instrument and a web-based audit instrument referred to as the Online Audit System. All components of the paper-based audit instrument can be accessed and downloaded on the PREA Resource Center website. The Online Audit System is available at www.preaaudit.org. More detailed information about the Audit Instrument can be found in the PREA Auditor Handbook.
The Audit Instrument developed by DOJ, both in its paper- and web-based form, is the only Audit Instrument DOJ-certified PREA auditors are authorized to use to conduct PREA audits. Correctional agencies may elect to use third party software to assist with audit planning and preparation (e.g., document retention and organization); however, such software may not be used by PREA auditors to replace or supersede the Audit Instrument developed by DOJ. If such software is used, auditors are still responsible for conducting high quality, objective, comprehensive, and reliable audits and using DOJ-approved auditing materials. DOJ does not endorse any third party PREA auditing assistance software. Correctional agencies are encouraged to carefully vet third party auditing assistance software to ensure that it is not duplicative of the Online Audit System, which is available free of charge and allows correctional agencies and PREA auditors to streamline, organize, and automate much of the PREA audit process in a secure environment. Correctional agencies and PREA auditors interested in learning more about the Online Audit System may contact the PREA Resource Center at firstname.lastname@example.org.