The growing rise of recidivism poses a threat to our society’s ability to prepare individuals to become contributing adults. According to a 2010 study by the Pew Center on the States, 4 in 10 ex-offenders are re-incarcerated for committing a new crime or violating the terms of their release, within 3 years of their release. Among the leading cause of recidivism is the lack of employment opportunities and the limited educational opportunities for ex-offenders. By placing a greater emphasis on providing marketable skills we improve the odds that they will successfully reintegrate in society.
What was the problem?
What is the solution?
Representative Johnson seeks to expand and set universal standards for programs that have demonstrated a cost-effective approach to one of the largest expenses facing state governments. Creating universal standards can drive down the cost of the programs, make them easier to implement, and get more prisoners involved.
In order to reduce recidivism and improve ex-offender reintegration, prison systems should partner with private industry to develop Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs for prisoners. By placing a greater emphasis on providing marketable skills we improve the odds that they will successfully reintegrate in society.
Submitted by Representative Eric Johnson of Dallas, TX
Finalist, 2014 New Ideas Challenge