Week ending Aug. 30, 2015

RE-ENTRY

Transitional jobs after release from prison: effects on employment and recidivism by Erin Jacobs Valentine and Cindy Redcross, IZA Journal of Labor Policy

“This paper presents the results of two experimental evaluations of transitional jobs programs for recently released former prisoners: the Evaluation of the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO) and the Transitional Jobs Reentry Demonstration (TJRD). The analysis assesses the effects of these programs on employment and recidivism.”

A path to work for ex-offenders by Peter Cove, The Baltimore Sun

“Baltimore has some problems, but it also harbors proven solutions. Crime and poverty penetrate all levels of the city, yet there is a remedy right under our noses. America Works, a private for-profit company with funding by the Abell Foundation, has pioneered a successful strategy for getting ex-offenders jobs and reducing recidivism.”

HEALTHCARE

Blog: Prisoners have skin in the game, too by Harris Meyer, Modern Healthcare

“Talk about skin in the game! In this case, it’s more like muscle and bone. At least 38 states are charging prison inmates co-payments for healthcare services, according to a recent study by the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law.”

RECIDIVISM

Snapshot of California’s recidivism initiative

PRISON RELOCATION

Prison is leaving Draper, but Corrections bosses stay put by Matt Canham, The Salt Lake Tribune

“The Utah Department of Corrections is not done with Draper and won’t be even after the last inmate is transferred to a new prison in Salt Lake City a few years from now and developers take control of the old prison land. That’s because the Corrections headquarters housing the top brass, along with the training academy, are staying put. They sit on the east side of Interstate 15 adjacent to the barbed wire fences separating the prison from the outside world.”

Guv names former Salt Lake City Councilman Carlton Christensen to prison board by Matt Canham, The Salt Lake Tribune

“A former Salt Lake City councilman and lifelong west-sider will represent the capital on a state board overseeing construction of a new prison. Gov. Gary Herbert has named Carlton Christensen to the Prison Development Commission. He joins other members who are the same state lawmakers who unanimously picked Salt Lake City as the prison site over Eagle Mountain, Grantsville and Fairfield.”

OPINION

We need Salt Lake City’s help to transform prison by Rep. Kay McIff, The Salt Lake Tribune

“Utah has been through this drill before. It began 78 years ago. The 1937 Legislature passed Senate Bill 247, which stated, “There is hereby appropriated $100,000 … for the purpose of purchasing a site suitable for the building of an adequate and modern state penitentiary.”

UTAH BOARD OF PARDONS AND PAROLE

Utah man who killed girlfriend and shot her roommate denied parole by Pamela Manson, The Salt Lake Tribune

“The Utah Board of Pardons and Parole has denied parole to a man who killed his girlfriend in 1997 and dumped her body in Spanish Fork Canyon. Michael Jay Patterson — who also shot and wounded the girlfriend’s roommate — appeared before the parole board last week. Under the decision, he will have to serve his entire 20-year prison term and will be released when his sentence expires in August 2017.”

STORIES OF INTEREST

Illinois prisons bursting at the seams by Stephen Elliott, Dispatch-Argus 

“On June 30,1970, Illinois had 7,326 people locked up in its prisons. On June 30, 2014, the number was 48,921. During those 44 years, the state closed most of its mental health centers, including those in East Moline, Galesburg and Dixon; failed to deliver on its promise to fund community-based treatment for the people who were displaced; declared a war on drugs, complete with draconian sentences for non-violent offenders; and passed mandatory sentencing laws for many offenses that leave judges no case-by-case discretion.”

OPINION: Ease inmates’ transition to freedom by NWITimes.com (Indiana)

“The Indiana Department of Correction has developed effective programs aimed at keeping offenders from returning to prison once they’re released. The challenge now is to get more offenders to participate.”

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