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Reentry - General

National Reentry Resource Center (New York, NY).
"This brief from the National Reentry Resource Center highlights advancements made in state and local governments’ approaches to reentry and reducing recidivism since the passage of the Second Chance Act in 2008. It underscores the involvement of diverse constituencies and systems in these efforts, the field’s increasing understanding and application of what works to reduce recidivism, and promising recidivism outcomes in a number of states."

A collection of 5-Key Model for Reentry resources, from the Institute for Justice Research and Development.

The purpose of this document is to provide an overview of the offender reentry literature, offender outcomes, and the reentry initiatives that may work to improve public safety. NIJ investments will be noted and appropriate references provided.

People who are leaving incarceration face a significantly higher risk of relapse, overdose, and overdose-related death than people in the general public. Because of these odds, reentry is a critical time to provide rapid access to pre- and post-release treatment as well as informed supervision to people who have opioid addictions. This fact sheet from the National Reentry Resource Center describes the best practices that correctional, community-based behavioral health, and probation and parole agencies can implement within their systems to ensure reentry for people who have opioid addictions is safe and successful.

The fact sheet provides an overview of 10 ways the professionals in these agencies can help to ensure success, which fall under the following categories: planning and coordination, behavioral health treatment and cognitive behavioral interventions, probation and parole supervision, and recovery support services.

Center for Effective Policy (Washington, DC).

Each of these Coaching Packets provides an overview of a key topic related to successful offender reentry, concrete strategies and key steps for enhancing practice in this area, and a "self-assessment tool" that jurisdictions can use to evaluate their strengths and challenges in the particular topic area discussed.” “Coaching Packet Series 1: Creating a Blueprint for an Effective Offender Reentry System” includes “A Framework for Offender Reentry,” “Establishing a Rational Planning Process,” and “Engaging in Collaborative Partnerships to Support Reentry.” “Coaching Packet Series 2: Delivering Evidence-Based Services” has “Implementing Evidence-Based Practices,” “Effective Case Management,” “Shaping Offender Behavior,” “Engaging Offenders' Families in Reentry,” “Building Offenders' Community Assets Through Mentoring,” and “Reentry Considerations for Women Offenders.” “Coaching Packet Series 3: Ensuring Meaningful Outcomes” contains “Measuring the Impact of Reentry Efforts” and “Continuous Quality Improvement.”

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 Council has developed a robust set of policies, programs, and training materials to support the reintegration of formerly incarcerated individuals and reduce barriers for those with a criminal record … The Reentry Council’s path forward will be guided by an overarching commitment to realizing the goals described in this report – and ensuring that the tools for successful reentry reach the communities that need them most (p. 75).

COMMUNITY CORRECTIONS IS in the early stages of its renaissance. Reawakened from the late 1970s through the 1990s of “nothing works” and zero tolerance for violators, and driven by political consensus that mass incarceration is a failed criminal justice response, community corrections is on a path of rediscovery and new learning. Since then, reentry has replaced revocation as the word du jour, backed up with a host of new innovations in supervising and rehabilitating offenders to reduce recidivism (e.g., validated, actuarial risk assessment tools; cognitive treatment programs; motivational interviewing). However, even with all of these new best practices and evidence-based advances in community corrections, there is a recognition that long-term successful reintegration will only take place when there is a coordinated and collaborative effort by all stakeholders working with justice involved individuals in the community. 

Jonson, Cheryl Leo, and Francis T. Cullen.Crime and Justice 44, no. 1 (2015): 517-576. 

Issues surrounding reentry programs for inmates are discussed. "Only in the past decade has prisoner reentry been “discovered” and become a central policy concern in the United States … A growing number of programs have been created in prisons and the community. Implementing them effectively, however, poses substantial challenges" (p. 517).

"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). Sections of this brief cover: key findings; the high cost of recidivism in Massachusetts-- incentive to reform, post-release supervision, step downs, and sentence length; evidence-based reentry strategies—post-release supervision, transitional housing, employment services, substance abuse and mental health, and multiservice reentry; collateral sanctions and criminal records in Massachusetts; how much reentry programs can reduce recidivism; conditions of confinement and recidivism risk; state reentry efforts—comprehensive reentry models (in Minnesota, Michigan, and Maryland), and funding reentry initiatives (justice reinvestment in Arkansas, Hawaii, South Dakota, and pay-for-success financing—California, Massachusetts, New York, and Oklahoma); justice reinvestment and effective supervision; and a five-part reentry plan for reducing recidivism in Massachusetts.

Reducing Recidivism in Massachusetts with a Comprehensive Strategy Cover

"Reentry refers to the transition of offenders from prisons or jails back into the community. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs more than 650,000 people are released from state and federal prisons annually. Another 9 million cycle through local jails. Research by the Bureau of Justice Statistics published in 2006, has shown that more than two-thirds of state prisoners will be rearrested within three years of their release and more than half (56.7%) are re-incarcerated. The number of offenders and the likelihood of their re-incarceration have made reentry a priority for policy makers and criminal justice researchers and practitioners. 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. The costs of imprisonment also wreak havoc on state and municipal budgets. In the past 20 years state spending on corrections has grown at a faster rate than nearly any other state budget item. The U.S. now spends more than $85 billion on federal, state, and local corrections. Because reentry intersects with issues of health and housing, education and employment, family, faith, and community well-being, many federal agencies are focusing on the reentry population with initiatives that aim to improve outcomes in each of these areas" (p. 3). This annotated bibliography addresses issues surrounding the reentry of offenders into the community. Entries are organized according to: reentry websites; reentry in general; reentry by category for jails, prisons, victims of crimes, community and family support, education, employment and housing, health and safety, and special populations; and resources with earlier publication dates.

Reentry Annotated Bibliography cover

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