Putting the Pieces Together. Building a Foundation for Successful Re-entry. The Washington State Department of Corrections Guide to Offender Re-Entry. Why should anyone care about re-entry? . For many people, the choice to engage in criminal behavior is
The Washington State Department of Corrections Guide to Offender Re-Entry
For many people, the choice to engage in criminal behavior is
influenced by circumstances that limit their ability to live as productive members of society. If you look at the big picture “effects” 650,000 prisoners release each year nationally, 9000 of whom release to Washington State communities
And if you want more specific information :
“Re-Entry is everything we do to get offenders back into the community as law-abiding citizens.”
Harold W. Clarke, Secretary, Washington State Department of Corrections
The Department of Corrections partnered with the Washington State Institute for Public Policy to research options to reduce future prison construction, criminal justice costs and crime rates.
The study showed that we needed to look at the root causes of crime and identify what works to reduce offender recidivism. Programs shown to work was identified as “evidence-based” programs and included:
(102) Each county will conduct an inventory of the services and resources in the county to assist offenders in reentering communities. The counties will consult with DOC, DSHS in applicable program areas, Employment Security, and other county and city stakeholders.
(103) The Department of Community Trade and Economic Development (CTED) will establish a pilot program for awarding grants to counties for the purpose of implementing coordinated re-entry efforts. CTED will also establish a policy advisory committee to assist in monitoring and maintaining data.
(203) The Department of Corrections must develop in individualized re-entry plan for every offender who is committed to the jurisdiction of the department.
This section also mandates that offenders releasing from confinement must go to their first county of origin, which is defined as the county of the offender’s first felony conviction in Washington.
Requires the department to conduct an evaluation of work release facilities and community justice centers. The department will also work to increase the number of community justice centers and establish workgroups to both assist in citing news facilities and develop applicable policies.
Requires that those offenders who are eligible (non-violent) demonstrate they are actively participating in re-entry programming to receive additional earned time off their sentence structure.
Allows third parties (family support) to make contributions on behalf of offenders seeking postsecondary education.
Requires that the Department of Corrections and the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges review methods to assess education and vocational programming as it relates to re-entry.
Directs the Washington State Institute for Public Policy to conduct an analysis and evaluation of evidence and research based education programs.
Instructs the Department of Licensing (DOL) to convene and chair a workgroup to review and recommend changes to occupational licensing laws and policies to encourage the employment of individuals with criminal convictions while ensuring the safety of the public.
Directs DOL and DOC to establish procedures to assist offenders in obtaining a driver’s license or identification card upon release.
The intent is to increase housing available to offenders. Encourages state landlords to formulate rental policies that are not unduly burdensome. States landlords that rent to offenders are not liable for civil damages arising from criminal conduct of the tenant
Directs CTED to establish a pilot program to provide grants to eligible organizations to provide transitional housing assistance to offenders reentering the community.
Each offender receives a timely comprehensive assessment (medical, mental health, education, vocation, chemical dependency, support resources) resulting in an individualized plan.
Based on each plan, the offender receives the right programs and treatments at the right times, provided from the right locations
The plan follows the offender through their DOC commitment so that community safety is enhanced and all those involved support and understand the pieces of the plan that remain unfinished
Partnerships are developed to hold acountable, support, monitor and transition the offender into a productive, prosocial lifestyle
Offenders re-enter communities able to make better choices that contribute to a safe society
A SAFER WASHINGTON
For every offender who Washington State
re-offends, there are more victims and more costs to arrest, prosecute and incarcerate.
Being smart on crime is addressing the underlying reasons and/or issues why this is happening and how we can prevent the numbers from continuing to increase