What Is Reentry?
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. An even greater number is released from local jails. Research by the Bureau of Justice Statistics published in 2006, has shown that two-thirds of these offenders will be rearrested and many will be reincarcerated within three years of their release. The number of offenders and the likelihood of their reincarceration 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.
Some recent reentry strategies employ comprehensive strategies focus on assessing offenders and tailoring reentry plans to individual offenders to enable them to become productive and law-abiding. Increasingly, reentry begins at the sentencing phase and continues post-release, with a particular focus on the continuity of care from prison to the community. It often involves a variety of agencies and groups that coordinate efforts to ensure that offenders receive needed services and appropriate levels of supervision. For example, reentry courts are specialized courts that target offenders released from prison/jail and use the authority of the court to promote offender accountability. They provide tailored responses to offenders including graduated sanctions, varied levels of supervision, and incentives.
This program area focuses on reentry for adults.
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