Updated: Mar 27
Combatting Re-Offending Through Evidenced Means
Despite the troubling rate of recidivism in returning citizens, there have been numerous scientifically-supported methods of proactive intervention. Here are four ways you can advocate for Prisoner's Rights.
Expand Education Funding Increasing the educational opportunities of the incarcerated has widely been observed as an effective means of reducing recidivism. (Check out our last blog post to see how!) Academic support grants, such as the Pell Grant, help combat recidivism through education. A multitude of global studies has described that prisoners who graduate from prison education have dramatically lower chances of re-offending. Despite this, millions of incarcerated lack the opportunity to learn, thus lessening their chances of success post-release. Help deter re-offending through Education! Support the expansion of the Second Chance Pell Grant!
Maximize Motivation. "Offender, Inmate, Felon, Criminal, Convict, Prisoner, Delinquent" The way society talks about citizens impacted by the justice system needs to change. We do not believe in marking you by your past mistakes. These terms decrease motivation and self-belief. Then, once released, they follow you as disparaging terms. You are a Citizen, You are Worthy, You are Valuable. By maximizing motivation and encouraging civility in returning citizens, recidivism rates will further decrease. Imprisoned and Returning Civilians face an uphill battle in the public's eye. Instead, we should remain empathetic of one's struggles and ENCOURAGE AND MOTIVATE BENEFICIAL CHANGES TO SUPPORT THEIR SUCCESS. Far too often does society "throw people away" to never reconstruct their life. What that cycle does, though, is banish "inmates" and force them back into the same mistakes as before.
Prioritize Prisoner's Mental Health Prison systems can worsen one's mental state and have been noted for exacerbated previous mental health conditions. Worse off, imprisoned citizens are largely left without the proper mental health facilities to heal. There is a disheartening amount of individuals with mental health disorders currently imprisoned. So while there is a disproportionate amount of individuals suffering from mental health disorders, prisoners find themselves left without clinical assistance. Once again, this lack of support increases Re-Offending rates. Instead, Supporting the Expansion of Mental Health Resources would contribute to the health and wellbeing of the public while reducing homeless rates and re-convictions.
Integrate Treatment Facilities It seems as though "Correctional Facilities" lack the capacity to help imprisoned citizens correct their behavior. This is due to the lack of treatment facilities in many penal systems. Leaving prisoners with no support, especially those suffering from drug or substance abuse is horrific. Yet, these horrors are a reality for millions. Considering a large number of prisoners being convicted of non-violent drug offenses, especially the disproportionate and oppressive incarceration rates of Black and Brown citizens since the '80s, the lack of professional support only contributes to the Revolving Door imprisonment cycle. Call For More Treatment Facilities! Put the Correction Back Into Correctional Facilities!