Prison Programs

Programming available for incarcerated populations

  • Peer relations: Review of learning from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Prison Reform Fellowships " Part IV Institute for Criminal Policy Research, Birkbeck, University of London, June, 2017(This briefing examines the importance of positive peer relations for promoting desistance and providing moral and practical support to people in prison and on release.)
  • Sense of self and responsibility: a review of learning from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Prison Reform Fellowships " Part V Institute for Criminal Policy Research, Birkbeck, University of London, June, 2017“This report profiles interventions which encourage imprisoned people to develop a positive sense of self and a sense of responsibility for their own lives and towards others.”
  • Using Time to Reduce Crime: Federal Prisoner Survey Results Show Ways to Reduce Recidivism Families Against Mandatory Minimums, May, 2017“An estimated 45 percent of federal prisoners have mental health and behavioral problems...Two-thirds of prisoners who responded to our survey said they had not received mental or behavioral health counseling while in federal prison.”
  • The Price of Prisons: Examining State Spending Trends, 2010-2015 Vera Institute of Justice, May, 2017“Since 2010, 23 states have reduced the size of their prison populations. Vera’s research found that 13 of these states have saved considerably in taxpayer money — $1.6 billion — at the same time.”
  • Responsible Prison Project: Reshaping The Texas Prison System for Greater Public Safety Aaron Flaherty, David Graham, Michael Smith, William D Jones, and Vondre Cash, October, 2016“It has often been said that those who are closest to a problem are closest to its solution. That is no less true for those who are in prison.”
  • Making the Grade: Developing Quality Postsecondary Education Programs in Prison Vera Institute of Justice, July, 2016“[T]his report compiles lessons from the field, offering implementation guidance to programs seeking to develop, expand, or enhance postsecondary educational programming in corrections settings.”
  • A New Role for Technology? Implementing Video Visitation in Prison Vera Institute of Justice, February, 2016“This report examines the current landscape of video visitation in prisons nationwide and offers a detailed case study of an early adopter, Washington State.”
  • Special Committee on Re-entry New York State Bar Association, January, 2016“The cost of re-incarceration and the cost to victims of recidivism are far greater than the cost of providing the programs described in this report.”
  • Degrees of Freedom: Expanding College Opportunities for Currently and Formerly Incarcerated Californians Renewing Communities Initiative, February, 2015“Our colleges and criminal justice agencies must break out of their silos and share a commitment to high-quality education for all students whether they are learning in prison, jail, or the community.”
  • Department of Corrections Colorado Correctional Industries Performance Audit Colorado Office of the State Auditor, January, 2015“Although statute requires CCI to operate in a profit-oriented manner, CCI’s industries operations earned profit margins on average of less than 1 percent from Fiscal Years 2009 through 2014.”
  • Study of the TDCJ Offender Visitation Policies Texas Department of Criminal Justice, August, 2014“A temporary online survey was conducted from November 2013 to March 2014 to obtain feedback from the public regarding their past visitation experience.”
  • A Program Evaluation of In-Prison Components The Colorado Department of Corrections Sex Offender Treatment and Monitoring Program Central Coast Clinical and Forensic Psychology Services, Inc., January, 2014“Many sexual offenders who could successfully be managed in the community, had they effectively participated in treatment, may instead spend additional years in prison. This will represent a great cost to the Colorado taxpayer...”
  • The Choice is Yours: Early Implementation of a Diversion Program for Felony Offenders Urban Institute, Justice Policy Center, October, 2013“As of June 30, 2013, of consented participants in the The Choice is Yours (TCY) who progressed beyond orientation and into the full enrollment phase, 4.6 percent (N=3 of 65) have been rearrested”
  • SOCCPN Annuals Survey of Sex Offender Civil Commitment Programs 2013 Sex Offender Civil Commitment Programs Network, 2013“Nationwide census of civilly committed individuals is 4779 among the 18 programs who responded to the 2013 survey.”
  • Religion in Prisons A 50-State Survey of Prison Chaplains Pew Research Center, Forum on Religion & Public Life, March, 2012“Nearly all chaplains either favor (46%) or strongly favor (46%) dealing with non-violent, 1st-time offenders through other kinds of sentences (such as community service or mandatory substance-abuse counseling) rather than prison terms.”
  • Community Reentry After Prison Drug Treatment Learning from Sheridan Therapeutic Community Program participants Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, January, 2012“Younger participants engaged in criminal activity and relapsed sooner than older participants. Younger participants also reported being less engaged in the Sheridan program than older participants.”
  • 2011 Adult Institutions Outcome Evaluation Report State of California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, November, 2011(Participation in in-prison substance abuse programs, combined with post-release community-based aftercare results in recidivism rates (29.3 %) that are much lower than those that did not participate in any substance abuse treatment program (65.3 %).)
  • 2009 Annual Report Massachusetts Department of Correction Massachusetts Department of Correction, December, 2009“2009 Releases to the Street from Massachusetts Department of Correction: Top 10 Cities”
  • Michigan Breaks the Political Logjam A New Model for Reducing Prison Populations ACLU, November, 2009“[Michigan's] new policies are designed to provide offenders with individualized programing in prison, and re-entry services upon release, that are most likely to assure success on parole, based on evidence of what works to reduce crime and save money.”
  • Prisoner Reentry Experiences of Adult Males Characteristics, Service Receipt, and Outcome of Participants in the SVORI Multi-Site Evaluation Pamela K. Lattimore, Danielle M. Steffey, Christy A. Visher, September, 2009“SVORI program participation greatly increased the likelihood of receiving a wide range of services, but levels of participation were less than reported needs.”
  • Evidence-based Treatment of Alcohol, Drug, and Mental Health Disorders: Potential Benefits, Costs, and Fiscal Impacts for Washington State Washington State Institute for Public Policy, June, 2006“Per dollar of treatment cost, we estimate that evidence-based treatment generates about $3.77 in benefits for people in Washington. Expressed as a return on investment, this is equivalent to roughly a 56 percent rate of return.”
  • Understanding California Corrections California Policy Research Center, May, 2006(An overview of the current trends in the California corrections system, with recommendations.)
  • Benefit-Cost in the California Treatment Outcome Project Does Substance Abuse Treatment Susan L. Ettner, David Huange, Elizabeth Evans, et. al. (Published in Health Services Research, Volume 41), January, 2006“Our best estimate is that on average, substance abuse treatment costs $1,583 and is associated with a societal benefit of $11,487, representing a 7:1 ratio of benefits to costs.”
  • Treatment Instead of Prisons: A Roadmap for Sentencing and Correctional Policy in Wisconsin Justice Strategies, January, 2006“Absent a major investment of tax dollars in treatment services, however, we found that the state is likely to face mounting prison populations pressures in coming years due to growth in nonviolent admissions and revocations of post-release supervision.”
  • Penny-Wise & Pound-Foolish: Assaultive offender programming and Michigan's prison costs Citizens Alliance on Prisons and Public Spending and American Friends Service Committee, Criminal Justice Program, April, 2005(Michigan Department of Corrections offers assaultive offender programming for people in prison for assault, the report examines the administrative shortfalls of this program and proposes solutions.)
  • Correctional Industries Programs for Adult Offenders in Prison: Estimates of Benefits and Costs Washington State Institute for Public Policy, January, 2005“We find that correctional industries programs for adult offenders in prison can achieve a statistically significant reduction in recidivism rates, and that a reasonably priced program generates about $6.70 in benefits per dollar of cost.”
  • Washington's Drug Offender Sentencing Alternative: An Evaluation of Benefits and Costs Washington State Institute for Public Policy, January, 2005“[O]ur overall finding is that [Drug Offender Sentencing Alternative] is an effective criminal justice policy for drug offenders but neutral for drug-involved property offenders.”
  • Pennsylvania's Motivational Boot Camp 2003 Report to the Legislature Pennsylvania Sentencing Commission, January, 2004
  • Batterer Intervention Programs: Where Do We Go From Here? National Institute of Justice, June, 2003
  • Drug Treatment in the Criminal Justice System The Current State of Knowledge Urban Institute, January, 2003“Prisoners are not getting the drug treatment programs that would reduce their drug abuse and criminal behavior.”
  • Education as Crime Prevention: The Case for Reinstating Pell Grant Eligibility for the Incarcerated Bard Prison Initiative, 2003“This report illustrates the overwhelming consensus among public officials that postsecondary education is the most successful and cost-effective method of preventing crime.”
  • The Practice and Promise of Prison Programming Urban Institute, May, 2002
  • State Correctional Education Programs: State Policy Update National Institute for Literacy, March, 2002
  • Pennsylvania's Motivational Boot Camp 2002 Report to the Legislature Pennsylvania Sentencing Commission, January, 2002
  • Trends in State Parole, 1990-2000 Bureau of Justice Statistics, October, 2001“Forty-two percent of State parole discharges were successful”
  • A National Study Comparing the Environments of Boot Camps with Traditional Facilities for Juvenile Offenders National Institute of Justice, August, 2001
  • Research Findings on Adult Correction's Programs: A Review Washington State Institute for Public Policy, September, 1999
  • Preventing Crime: What Works, What Doesn't, What's Promising National Institute of Justice, July, 1998
  • Literacy Behind Prison Walls: Profiles of the Prison Population from the National Adult Literacy Survey National Center for Education Statistics, October, 1994(the literacy levels of prisoners, by population and offense groups, with comparisons to demographically similar adults not in prison)
  • The Debate on Rehabilitating Criminals: Is it True that Nothing Works? Jerome Miller, National Center for Institutions and Alternatives, March, 1989(The easiest thing to say is that rehabilitation has never been seriously tried. There are, however, some studies of small programs cited in Miller's footnotes that deserve attention.)
  • Statistical Description of the [Massachusetts] Furlough Program: 1972-1987 Prison Policy Initiative, 1988
  • The Massachusetts Furlough Program: Position Paper Massachusetts Department of Corrections, May, 1987

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