26 Apr From Incarceration to Rehabilitation
Mass incarceration may seem like a simple solution to help decrease crime and increase safety in communities, however, the solution is much more complicated. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, many people who have been to jail or prison lack the resources they need to integrate back into the community successfully. Therefore, they are likely to commit new crimes due to instability and financial demands. To help combat this, many states are implementing re-entry programs, which offer support and guidance to incarcerated individuals as they make the transition back into society. CHRIS 180 honors Second Chance Month each April and celebrates National Reentry Week to champion the importance of reentry programs and services.
Incarceration not only impacts children, adults, and families but the community as a whole. In many cases, the cycle can last for generations, as children and family members experience challenges when those they love are in prison. The National Institute of Justice highlights those difficulties, including psychological strain, anti-social behavior, suspension or expulsion from school, economic hardship, and criminal activity. Communities experience loss of work, a smaller tax base and the destabilization of neighborhood dynamics.
These obstacles are why reentry programs are essential to communities. When participants in the program thrive after incarceration, they are able to enter the workforce, provide for their loved ones and contribute to society.
CHRIS 180 Provides Assistance for Incarcerated Men
CHRIS 180’s Reentry Programs partner with Metro assist young men, ages 17-24, who are currently incarcerated, with pre-release and post-release counseling.
Three reentry programs are offered:
- Fulton County Program
- Fulton County Sheriff’s Office SAMSHA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) Program
- Fulton County Sheriff’s Office Co-occurring Substance Abuse and Mental Illness Program
Mental health services are a critical aspect of reentry to communities after incarceration. Studies from The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law show people who struggle with mental health issues or substance use disorders tend to have higher recidivism rates. At CHRIS 180, we work to combat this problem by giving clients daily access to a CHRIS 180 Therapist and/or a Reentry Care Coordinator. In our Fulton County Sheriff’s Office program, we also offer group counseling, substance abuse groups, life skills training, GED preparation/testing and workforce development.
“Our goal is to reduce recidivism by working with individuals to help them build a support network. The reentry process really starts once individuals are incarcerated to help them set up that plan for success,” said Reentry Program Supervisor, Tyeisha Crumsey, LPC.
Briyanna Ferguson is the Marketing & Communications Coordinator at CHRIS 180. She can be reached at Briyanna.Ferguson@chris180.org