Biden Admin. Announces $110M to ‘Support Currently and Formerly Incarcerated Individuals’

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The following is a news release from the Department of Justice:

The Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs (OJP) today announced awards totaling more than $110.7 million to reduce recidivism and support adults and youth returning to their communities after confinement.

OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), National Institute of Justice (NIJ) and Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) are awarding grants to jurisdictions, non-profit organizations, research institutions and other agencies in support of evidence-based approaches to reintegrate formerly incarcerated individuals into communities.

“We are committed to ensuring that formerly incarcerated individuals get the treatment, training and support they need after returning to their communities,” said Associate Attorney General Vanita Gupta. “We must help them reunite with their families, find a place to live, obtain health care services and behavioral health support, get an education and enter the work force. These resources are critical to successful reintegration and promote the health and safety of our communities.”

Expanding reentry opportunities is a key priority of the Biden-Harris Administration, which is taking steps to make the criminal justice system fairer, more efficient and more effective at reducing recidivism. Community reintegration is a core feature of the President’s Comprehensive Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gun Crime and Ensure Public Safety. The Justice Department is actively engaged in eliminating barriers to successful reentry, helping formerly incarcerated individuals compete for jobs, attain stable housing and support their families.

“These resources — and investments being made by agencies across the federal government — will help catalyze and bolster systemic solutions to address the substantial reentry needs felt by hundreds of thousands of people across the nation,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Amy L. Solomon for OJP. “If we truly believe in second chances and the power of redemption, we must provide those who leave our jails, prisons and confinement facilities with the tools and support to assume a positive and productive role in our society.”

In FY 2021, BJA is providing a total of $94 million to adult reentry and recidivism reduction programs. More than $60 million is being awarded through its Second Chance Act grant programs, which are designed to help communities develop and implement comprehensive and collaborative strategies to address reentry and recidivism challenges. This funding includes:

  • More than $6.5 million through its FY 2021 Second Chance Act Pay for Success Initiative. This program provides funding for state, local and tribal governments to enhance or implement performance-based and outcomes-based contracts with reentry, permanent supportive housing or recovery housing providers to reduce recidivism, and address the substance use disorders that some formerly incarcerated people experience.
  • More than $26.3 million through its FY 2021 Second Chance Act: Adult Reentry Education, Employment, Treatment and Recovery Program. This program is designed to improve correctional educational and employment services for incarcerated populations and to improve treatment services for individuals with substance use disorders.
  • More than $12.9 million through its FY 2021 Second Chance Act Community-Based Reentry Program. This program provides funding to implement or expand reentry programs that demonstrate strong partnerships with corrections, parole, probation and other reentry service providers.
  • More than $3.5 million through its FY 2021 Swift, Certain, and Fair Supervision Program: Applying the Principles Behind Project HOPE. This program provides funding to state, local and Tribal community supervision agencies to develop and test new or enhanced applications of the swift, certain and fair principles of intervention to reduce recidivism and improve outcomes for people under community supervision.
  • $500,000 through its FY 2021 The HOPE Institute: Applying the Principles of Swiftness, Certainty, and Fairness Program. This program funds training and technical assistance organizations that will provide information, resources and other forms of assistance to state, local and Tribal community supervision agencies that are seeking to develop, test and enhance applications of the SCF principles using a data-driven, collaborative process that is informed by research and responsive to local settings.
  • $5 million through the FY 2021 Innovations in Reentry Initiative: Building System Capacity & Testing Strategies to Reduce Recidivism Program. This program provides resources to states, units of local government and federally recognized Indian Tribal governments to plan, implement or expand effective reentry practices and service delivery systems that address individuals’ needs and reduce recidivism.
  • $4.8 million through the FY 2021 Smart Probation: Innovations in Supervision Initiative. This program provides funding to state, local and Tribal community corrections agencies to improve supervision practices to increase positive outcomes, prevent recidivism and reduce crime in their jurisdictions.

In addition, BJA is bringing on two Second Chance Fellows who have lived experience and possess significant reentry policy and practice expertise to provide strategic guidance to BJA and its partners on reentry policies and practices. One was selected for a proposal to create statewide blueprints in two states to strengthen the reentry continuum and elevate the voices of formerly incarcerated people. Another was selected for a proposal to restore and enhance access to education for people with prior criminal justice involvement. The department will have more information to share about the fellows program in the new year.

In addition to the adult Second Chance Act programs above, BJA is awarding:

In FY 2021, OJJDP is awarding more than $16 million to enhance reentry services for juveniles and for incarcerated parents with children under 18 returning to their communities to include:

  • Nearly $4.5 million under its Second Chance Act Addressing the Needs of Incarcerated Parents with Minor Children Program, which helps states and localities develop or expand services that meet the needs of incarcerated parents and their minor children to prevent violent crime, reduce recidivism and strengthen family relationships.
  • Nearly $10 million under its Second Chance Act Youth Reentry Program. This program provides grants to state, local and Native American Tribal governments and nonprofit organizations to provide reentry services and programs to youth.
  • $1.5 million under the Family-Based Alternative Sentencing Program, which builds capacity of states, state and local courts, units of local government and federally recognized Tribal governments to implement new, or enhance existing, alternative sentencing programs for parents in the criminal justice system to improve family outcomes.

In FY 2021, NIJ is awarding more than $2 million through its FY 2021 Research and Evaluation on Promising Reentry Initiatives Program to perform rigorous research that examines the success of reentry strategies, programs and practices.

Once the awards are made, information about the grantees selected under each solicitation can be found online at the OJP Grant Awards Page.

OJP provides federal leadership, grants, training, technical assistance and other resources to improve the nation’s capacity to prevent and reduce crime, advance racial equity in the administration of justice, assist victims and enhance the rule of law. More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

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