Life on Parole — FRONTLINE and The New York Times' investigation of one state’s effort to reduce recidivism and lower prison populations by rethinking how parole works.
With unique access inside Connecticut’s corrections system, the film follows four former prisoners as they re-enter society and navigate the challenges of more than a year on parole — including finding work, staying sober and parenting -- all under intense supervision from the state.
From Vaughn Gresham, who was arrested for the first time at age 16, to Jessica Proctor, who spent nearly a decade behind bars for assault with physical injury, Life on Parole is a remarkable, firsthand look at why some people stay out of jail, why some go back, and how one state is trying to break the cycle of recidivism.
"I make a living on second chances — that’s what parole is," Officer Katherine Montoya says in the documentary.
Don't miss this inside look at how one state's experiment with second chances has played out for offenders, the communities they return to, and the system that's responsible for supervising them.
When They Get Out: how prisons
Atlantic (1999) by Sasha Abramsky
Popular perceptions about crime have blurred the boundaries between fact and politically expedient myth. The myth is that the United States is besieged, on a scale never before encountered, by a pathologically criminal underclass. The fact is that we're not. After spiraling upward during the drug wars, murder rates began falling in the mid-1990s; they are lower today than they were more than twenty years ago. In some cities the murder rate in the late twentieth century is actually lower than it was in the nineteenth century. Nonviolent property-crime rates are in general lower in the United States today than in Great Britain, and are comparable to those in many European countries.
Article: Getting Out of Prison Meant Leaving Dear Friends Behind:
The Marshall Project May 31, 2018 by Robert Wright
...I stop in front of the cell of one of my oldest friends. He looks at me and turns away, wishing me well without looking into my eyes. I give him information on how to get in touch with me. When I go to hand him the piece of paper, I can see he has tears in eyes that he is desperately trying to prevent from falling in my presence. He was sentenced to 40 to life. Never in the 10 years that I have known him have I ever seen him in a moment of weakness. And now it is my departure that is the cause of his vulnerability. We hug through the bars that separate us and exchange I love yous. I walk away knowing he was watching the image of me in the mirror he stuck outside his bars become smaller and smaller, until it would be the last he ever sees of me. ...
Article/Podcast: IL Inmates Hope to get into this Prison
WBEZ by Miles Bryan
In Illinois’ Department of Corrections, there’s a prison so attractive that inmates write essays to get in. It’s only housing about 220 prisoners, but more than 1,500 have applied to get in. At the Kewanee Life Skills Re-Entry Center, inmates are free to walk where they please, take art classes, and even garden.
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UUPMI Members note that this while we work toward a total reduction in prison population this is a model of how prisons should be run to ensure people live in dignity and care.
CNI Micro Finance Group by Erica King
One hundred twenty-five men and women recently released from the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) will be given a real chance to transform their lives thanks to an innovative new program forged by a dynamic public/private partnership fueled by CNIMFG with support from Citi Community Development. The program will provide training and start-up capital to help returning citizens open a business and create jobs and economic opportunities for themselves and underserved Chicago communities. Studies show that only 17.5% of returning prisoners who find regular employment, or create jobs for themselves, return to prison.
Erica King, VP Lending, CNIMFG, recently joined Governor Bruce Rauner and other state officials to launch the Pathway to Enterprise for Returning Citizens (PERC), the new privately funded program designed to provide recently incarcerated citizens with in-depth training, personal coaching and mentoring from its program partners: Bethel New Life, Chatham Business Association, North Lawndale Employment Network, The Safer Foundation and Sunshine Enterprises. Once the training is successfully completed, participants will be eligible to receive up to $50,000 in start-up capital from CNIMFG to open a business.
Watch or listen to the segment on line.
PERC's partners include the Illinois Criminal Justice Authority, IDOC, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and CNIMFG. More than $1 million was raised to fund the program from Citi Community Development, The Chicago Community Trust, the Perry Family Foundation, US Bank Foundation and the Hughes Foundation.
For additional information about PERC or CNIMFG's micro-lending products and financial services, contact Erica King, Vice President of Lending, CNIMFG, firstname.lastname@example.org or 773.341.2072.
At 18 Kingley Rowe Went to Prison for 10 years - Now He's 47 and Still Wonders When He'll Be Free: Salon 1-1-2018
Lowering the prison population isn't enough, not if formerly incarcerated individuals are denied jobs after release.
...It comes down to whether, as a nation, for people branded as violent offenders, if “second chances” are not just written into law, but possible. ...
Read more about Mr. Rowe
THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM
Road to RedemptionFormerly incarcerated residents struggle to rebuild their lives and overcome the stigma of serving time.By Cooper Levey-Baker 8/28/2017 at 5:00am Published in the September 2017 issue of Sarasota Magazine
America locks up more of its citizens than any other country on earth. Home to 4.4 percent of the world’s population, the United States is also home to 22 percent of the world’s prisoners, a population that has increased fivefold in the last 40 years. More than 6.7 million Americans, one out of every 37 citizens, are under some type of correctional control, and more than 2.2 million are in a state or federal prison or local jail.
Almost all of them will at some point get out. Each year, 650,000 people are released from federal and state prisons.
What this is about
Learning asks us to change – so that the world might be a place for all are free to thrive