LITERATURE
REVIEW

Reentry
Defined

We Will Write a Custom Essay Specifically
For You For Only $13.90/page!


order now

It is necessary to have an efficient
definition of “prisoner reentry,” as well as what the literature indicates is a
suitable characterization of a prisoner reentry program. Petersilia (2004)
defines reentry stating, reentry “simply defined, includes all activities and
programming conducted to prepare ex-convicts to return safely to the community
and to live as law abiding citizens” (p.5). However, Shadd Maruna (2011) reports
that the development of rehabilitation is more than withdrawing prison and
being discharged into the society; it also includes the social and
psychological properties of imprisonment which includes the need for compassion,
tolerance and understanding of past wrongdoings. In this research, reentry is
defined as the method by which an individual works to reintegrate into the
community following discharge from prison or jail. The framework of reentry assistances
exposed in this research includes initiatives, programs and services provided
after individuals are released from prison. These programs provide a variety of
services to prepare ex-offenders for confronting the challenges of reintegrating
in a community. The motivation of this study is on reentry programs and the
resources employed within in them and how the quality of the same is
intrinsically valuable to the necessities of the released person for life
outside of prison.

Reentry programs are regularly operated
by nonprofit organizations. The focus population for a reentry program differs
and may be directed to women or men, youth or adults, and offender typology.
Reentry programs have been the emphasis of research by academics who evaluate
the effectiveness of these programs in fulfilling the necessities of
individuals and eventually in the program’s capability to lower recidivism and renovate
ex-offenders into constructive citizens. The reason past analysis have centered
around the effectiveness of the these programs is to create new models that
provide better: program concentration, stimulus of participants, funding, execution,
as well as approaches of program staff and overall program strategy (Wilson and
Davis, 2006; Pettus and Severson, 2006; Mears et al, 2006; Crosby and Bryson,
2005; Kettl and Fesler, 2005; Seiter and Kadela, 2003; Travis and Petersilia,
2001; McGuire, 1995 and Morash, 1982).

Seiter and Kadela (2003) produced a two
parted definition approach that includes prisoner reentry activity taking place
during and after incarceration. They define prisoner reentry programs as:

1. Correctional programs (United States
and Canada) that focus on the transition from prison to community (prerelease,
work release, halfway houses, or specific reentry programs) and;

2. Programs that have initiated treatment
(substance abuse, life skills, education, cognitive/behavioral, sex/violent
offender) in a prison setting and have linked with a community program to
provide continuity of care (p. 368).

While Seiter and Kadela’s definition
acknowledges that community-based organizations are an essential part of the stability
of care for ex-offender’s post-discharge, their explanation does not identify
nonprofit organizations as a primary benefactor of assistance services where
the obtainability of pre-release services are limited or unavailable.

 

History
of Reentry in the United States

Prisoner reentry is not a new model in
criminal justice. The notion has been titled by different positions, which
include “reintegration” and “offender rehabilitation”
(Travis and Petersilia, 2001; Ward and Maruna, 2007; Seiter and Kadela, 2003).
The application of reentry has changed over the last twenty years from a
pre-release endeavor to a inclusive arrangement practice which recognizes the
social maintenances and administration indispensable to completely reintegrate
an ex-offender into the community after their release from prison. Ex-offender
reentry is molded by many stakeholders, each of them are essential to establish
the scenarios of successful reintegration.

A study performed at a national level
involving society reintegration and the association with parole was conducted
by the National Research Council’s Committee on Supervision and Desistance from
Crime in conjunction with the Committee on Law and the Division of Social
Science and Education. The 2007 testimony focuses the description of parole and
supervision and its influence on reintegration.

The council defines the probation provision
as a correctional purpose of release which assists to guarantee public protection
by supervising the circumstances of discharge. According to Phyllida Parsloe
(1967), the probation assistance began as an experiment in Boston,
Massachusetts as a volunteer service. This led to the Probation Act of 1878 and
retaining officers mainly for the delivery of services post-release. Regulation
was supplementary in 1907 with the passage of the Probation Offenders Act,
which can be considered an initial form of reentry policy. The council reports
that within this role, parole officers assumed a great deal of prudence, which
can grow recidivism rates though their prudence to retract or consent parolees
(The National Research Council, 2007).