U.S. Department of Justice

Offender Reentry/Transition

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Jurisdictions release hundreds of thousands of offenders from jails and prisons each year. The successful transition of offenders back into the community -- without their reoffending -- is critical to community safety. A wide range of efforts are underway to prepare and support offenders for a successful return to their communities. In some jurisdictions, efforts are systemwide and led by corrections agencies, involving other public agencies and community stakeholders in system change efforts. Other efforts are more limited in scope and may focus on specific offender groups or geographic locations.

NIC has several active reentry projects, including:

  1. The Transition from Jail to Community Initiative (TJC)
  2. The Transition from Prison to Community Initiative (TPC)



Recommended Reading

Date Title Type
2010
Document 024393
TPC Case Management Handbook: An Integrated Case Management Approach
By Burke, Peggy; Herman, Paul; Stroker, Richard; Giguere, Rachelle. National Institute of Corrections (Washington, DC).
“This handbook is designed for teams of correctional and noncorrectional staff at the policy, management, and line staff levels who have been charged with implementing improvements in supervision and case management that support an overall strategy to reduce recidivism and enhance community safety through successful offender reentry” (p.1). Seven chapters are contained in this publication: an overview of the Integrated Case Management (ICM) approach; the critical challenges and strengths of the ... Read More
PDF
143 p.
2008
Document 022669
TPC Reentry Handbook: Implementing the NIC Transition from Prison to the Community Model
By Burke, Peggy B.. National Institute of Corrections (Washington, DC). Center for Effective Public Policy (Silver Spring, MD); National Institute of Corrections (Washington, DC).
“The TPC Reentry Handbook has been developed as a resource for a broad range of stakeholders involved in improving transition and reentry practices” (p.3). Chapters comprising this manual are: transition and reentry—a key public policy issue; the Transition from Prison to the Community (TPC) model; why and how to take on the challenge of transition and reentry—lessons from the eight TPC states (Georgia, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, New York, North Dakota, Oregon, and Rhode Island); implementi... Read More
PDF
266 p.
2016
Document 026286
Reentry Annotated Bibliography
National Institute of Corrections Information Center (Aurora, CO).
"Reentry refers to the transition of offenders from prisons or jails back into the community ... Breaking the cycle of reoffending and re-incarceration has many important implications for public safety and policy. High rates of recidivism mean more crime, more victims, and more pressure on an already overburdened criminal justice system … Because reentry intersects with issues of health and housing, education and employment, family, faith, and community well-being, many federal agencies are focu... Read More
PDF
31 pages
2002
Document 017520
Transition from Prison to Community Initiative
By Barnett, Liz; Parent, Dale G.. Abt Associates (Cambridge, MA); National Institute of Corrections (Washington, DC).
An examination of the Transition from Prison to Community Initiative (TPCI) from the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) is presented. This report contains two parts -- the problem and the solution. Sections that comprise the second part of this document, an in-depth look at TPCI are: a new model for the transition process -- an overview of TPCI and a description of its seven elements; and the implementation of the transition model -- partnerships and how to overcome barriers. TPCI "will he... Read More
PDF
37 p.
2002
Document 018694
Law Enforcement Tech Guide: How to Plan, Purchase and Manage Technology (Successfully!): A Guide for Executives, Managers and Technologists
By Harris, Kelly J.; Romesburg, William H.. SEARCH Group, Inc. (Sacramento, CA); U.S. Dept. of Justice. Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (Washington, DC).
"[S]trategies, best practices, recommendations and ideas for successful IT planning and implementation" (p. 3) are provided. This guide is divided into the following parts: seven facts to know before reading this document; build the foundation; conduct a needs analysis; create a project plan; acquire the technology; implement the technology; and maintain the technology. Descriptions of information technology and a glossary are also included.... Read More
PDF
280 p.

Related Resources

Date Title Type
2017
Document 032834
Shackled to Debt: Criminal Justice Financial Obligations and the Barriers to Re-Entry They Create
By Martin, Karin D.; Smith, Sandra Susan; Still, Wendy. Harvard Kennedy School. Malcolm Wiener Center for Social Policy. Program in Criminal Justice Policy and Management (Cambridge, MA); National Institute of Justice (NIJ) (Washington, DC).
The "authors discuss the long-term and unintended consequences of criminal justice financial obligations (CJFOs): fines, forfeiture of property, court fees, supervision fees, and restitution." [They] "describe trends in the assessment of CJFOs, discuss the historical context within which these trends have unfolded, and reflect on their unintended (but perhaps easily foreseen) consequences. We then treat restitution separately, given the distinct function (in theory at least) that restitution se... Read More

26 pages
2016
Document 032726
Transition from Jail to Community (TJC) Initiative Phase 2 Site Reports
By Christensen, Gary; Jannetta, Jesse; Kurs, Emma; Owens, Colleen; Rao, Shebani; Warwick, Kevin; Willison, Janeen Buck. National Institute of Corrections (NIC) (Washington, DC). National Institute of Corrections (NIC) (Washington, DC); Urban Institute (Washington, DC); Alternative Solutions Associates (Chicopee, MA); Corrections Partners, Inc. (CPI) (Clinton Corners, NY).
"TJC [Transition from Jail to Community] represents an integrated approach spanning organizational boundaries to deliver needed information, services, and case management to people released from jail. Boundary-spanning collaborative partnerships are necessary because transition from jail to the community is neither the sole responsibility of the jail nor of the community. Accordingly, effective transition strategies rely on collaboration among jail- and community-based partners and joint ownersh... Read More

2016
Document 032777
Reconnecting Justice: Pathways to Effective Reentry though Education and Training
Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) (Washington DC).
Research "shows that access to correctional education can significantly reduce recidivism … Providing these opportunities is cost-effective for states and has significant community and economic benefits. For individuals and families, coupling education and employment with reduced collateral and systemic barriers leads to economic self-sufficiency and improved life outcomes. CLASP’s forum examines promising policy options as well as lessons from state and federal initiatives." In addition to the... Read More

180 minutes
2016
Document 026286
Reentry Annotated Bibliography
National Institute of Corrections Information Center (Aurora, CO).
"Reentry refers to the transition of offenders from prisons or jails back into the community ... Breaking the cycle of reoffending and re-incarceration has many important implications for public safety and policy. High rates of recidivism mean more crime, more victims, and more pressure on an already overburdened criminal justice system … Because reentry intersects with issues of health and housing, education and employment, family, faith, and community well-being, many federal agencies are focu... Read More
PDF
31 pages
2016
Document 031542
Jobs after Jail: Ending the prison to poverty pipeline
By Fredericksen, Allyson; Omli, Desiree. Alliance for a Just Society (AJS) (Washington,DC).
"In many states and cities, both public and private employers can include a question on application materials requiring applicants to disclose whether or not they have a conviction record. While there is growing momentum to “Ban the Box,” in most cases these efforts only ban the box for public employment … On average, states have 123 mandatory bans and restrictions for would-be workers with felony convictions per state from employment in occupations or industries, from obtaining certain types of... Read More

44 pages
2016
Document 032749
Federal Interagency Reentry Council: A Record of Progress and a Roadmap for the Future
Federal Interagency Reentry Council (Washington, DC).
"With the collective commitment of leaders across the government and across the country, the Reentry Council is working to promote successful reentry and reintegration for individuals returning from prison and jail. Strengthening opportunities for second chances will not only improve outcomes for justice-involved populations, it will also reduce recidivism and victimization – creating safer communities – and save taxpayer dollars spent on the direct and collateral costs of incarceration … The C... Read More

108 pages
2016
Document 032607
Reducing Recidivism in Massachusetts with a Comprehensive Strategy
By Jones, Jonathan; Forman, Benjamin. Hyams Foundation (Boston, MA). Massachusetts Institute for a New Commonwealth (MassINC) (Boston, MA).
"This policy brief offers fodder for the state’s Justice Reinvestment leaders as they contemplate the changes necessary to increase the system’s focus on recidivism reduction and achieve results" (p. 2). ... Read More

20 pages
2015
Document 031485
The Reentry of Formerly Incarcerated Persons: Key Accomplishments, Challenges, and Future Directions; A Report on the National Reentry Symposium: Promising Practices and Future Directions
By Carter, Madeline M.. National Institute of Corrections (NIC) (Washington, DC); U.S. Bureau of Prisons (BOP) (Washington, DC).
“Reentry” is the term used to describe the processes and interventions that equip incarcerated individuals to return home and stay home. Recognizing the importance of effective reentry practices at the federal, state, and local levels, in September 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), and the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) co-sponsored the National Reentry Symposium: Promising Practices and Future Directions. The event was the first of its kind in terms... Read More

17 pages
2015
Document 030133
Reentry Skills Building Handbook, 2015
Georgia Dept. of Corrections. Operations, Planning & Training Division (Atlanta, GE); Georgia State Board of Pardons and Paroles (Atlanta, GE).
While specifically designed for Georgia, this handbook's format is a great example of an offender reentry handbook. It is based upon the Template from the Minnesota Department of Corrections. Sections following a "GDC Offender Reentry Model" flowchart include: introduction—getting organized; identification; housing; employment; careers; programs inside GDC; work ethics; transportation; money management; education; incarcerated veterans program; selective service; applying for Social Security; he... Read More

200 pages
2015
Document 030133
Reentry Skills Building Handbook, 2015
Georgia Dept. of Corrections. Operations, Planning & Training Division (Atlanta, GE); Georgia State Board of Pardons and Paroles (Atlanta, GE).
While specifically designed for Georgia, this handbook's format is a great example of an offender reentry handbook. It is based upon the Template from the Minnesota Department of Corrections. Sections following a "GDC Offender Reentry Model" flowchart include: introduction—getting organized; identification; housing; employment; careers; programs inside GDC; work ethics; transportation; money management; education; incarcerated veterans program; selective service; applying for Social Security; he... Read More

200 pages
2015
Document 029682
Offender Reentry: The Value of Victim Involvement [Broadcast]
By Brisbin, Lorie; Newlin, Lydia ; Costa, Jeralita “Jeri”; Odom, Mark; Seymour, Anne; Baker, Maureen; King, Erica. National Institute of Corrections (NIC) (Washington, DC).
This three-hour national discussion and broadcast by the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) focuses on the unique opportunities and challenges of including victims in the offender reentry process. Current points in the criminal justice reentry continuum where victims can and should have a voice are explored. By including victims we can obtain more balanced information about the offender and their offense history which can positively impact reentry decisions. This approach can result in bett... Read More

158 minutes
2015
Document 029987
American Prisons Are Not a Revolving Door: Most Released Offenders Never Return
By Rhodes,William. London School of Economics and Political Science. American Politics and Policy (LS USAPP) (London, England).
"The dominant narrative around recidivism in America is that most released offenders go on to reoffend and return to prison. In new research, William Rhodes argues that this impression is wrong and that two out of every three released offenders never return to prison. He argues that previous estimates about recidivism have failed to take into account the overrepresentation of returnees in prisons. Accounting for this factor, he finds that only 11 percent of offenders return to prison more than o... Read More

9 pages

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