Vote: Accept pending minor changes
[Please explain your vote. If you voted to publish pending minor changes, specify each change, why it is needed, and, possibly, how it should/could be done.]
This paper is a good addition to the VTC literature, but there are some changes/clarifications that need to be made in order to be publishable. I do not believe these constitute major changes, which is why I have voted to publish pending minor changes.
· Page 1, the first sentence in the abstract needs a period.
· Page 6, “for example” in the second paragraph should not be italicized.
· Page 6, a comma after the word “mentees” in the second paragraph, second sentence from the end of the paragraph should be removed.
· Page 8, AA is “Alcoholics Anonymous”, not “Alcohol Anonymous.”
· Page 8, clarify in the methods section if the interviews were private. Authors noted that the interviews took place in the courtroom, so were the interviews confidential? Could others hear the interviews? The authors note later that some interviews could be overheard. Could this have impacted the results?
· Pages 8 and 9, the authors need to provide more information about their qualitative coding process.
· Most of the results focus on what the mentors had to say. There were not many quotations from mentees, and I could find nothing from VTC team members. Authors need to incorporate the other interviews, especially since they argue that a contribution of this research is the perspectives of people other than the mentors.
· Page 10, the authors reported that Juan, a mentee, thought the mentors had all “drunk the Kool-Aid” and discussed here that there was a “cultish quality,” and in the next paragraph, that mentees were mixed in their reactions to the VTC. But there is no additional information here about what the mentees said, and in fact, the authors quote a mentor instead in this section. Also, how does this fit into the subheading “Mentoring as Obligation?”
· Page 11, there is bolding of text that should be removed (at the bottom of the page, “Jake, a mentor, stated,”).
· Page 12, subheading “Mentor as Sponsor/Advocate” should be bolded.
· Page 13, there’s a space at the end before the word “advice” that needs to be removed.
· Pages 15-6, the authors have a subheading for “Mentor Responsibilities.” This section contains just information from the mentors, except at the very end where two mentees are indicated as being “not afraid of talking to their mentors.” What did mentees and VTC team members say about the responsibilities of mentors?
· Page 18, in the second full paragraph, remove the comma between “responsibilities” and “would.”
· Page 18, in the third full paragraph two commas need to be removed. The first is between “Mentors in this VTC” and “reported” and the second is between “who attend formal training” and “find such training.”
· Page 18, there is bolding of text that needs to be removed near the end of the page.
· I suggest the authors review the pseudonyms they use and consider changing some. Jim and James are both used, and I think James was called a mentor in one case and a mentee in another.
[Please put additional info below, as/if you see fit:]
· Additional Info: I’m familiar with some of the literature cited by the authors, particularly another article about VTC mentors. The Jalain and Grossi (2020) article examines some of the same issues and does a better job of including the perspectives of the VTC team members than the current manuscript. The current manuscript dives deeper into the different roles the mentors see themselves taking, which is interesting and again highlights the need for established standards and training for VTC mentors.