The Second Chance program seeks to reduce recidivism in Arizona. It aims to achieve this by giving prison inmates aid through job and life skills training.
Many prisoners under the program are mainly those highly likely to commit another crime upon release.
The Second Chance Program vs Arizona Recidivism Rates
The Second Chance Program has been a success in many Arizona prisons. According to statistics, 60% of the participants in the program leave prison with a job. Even though not all of them manage to keep the jobs, Arizona’s inmate recidivism rate among the graduates of the program has reduced to 30%.
The Second Chance Re-Entry Program
Re-entry programs are important in the prison inmate rehabilitation process. The second chance program has proven that there are more chances out there for the ex-convicts to ascertain their transformation.
Job Training in Arizona Prisons
The second chance program focuses on helping prison inmates secure jobs after release, and also training them on acceptable behaviors. According to the DOC, nearly 80% of the incarcerated persons have an addiction problem.
This complicates inmates’ transitions to life outside of Arizona prisons. Many who are not properly trained return to substance abuse and stop showing up for work.
Inmates battling addiction go through different sessions. Officials in the program take them through different ways of slowly controlling addiction.
For one to qualify for certain jobs, they need to meet certain standards of training and skill. The second chance program trains prison inmates on how to work on their resumes and job skills. Trainers also teach the prisoners how to present themselves during interviews. This has enhanced their languages and other job hunting tips.
Graduating Prison Inmates
The graduating participants in the program meet monthly with different hosts for a job fair. The inmates get to hear from different employers in construction companies, commercial moving, and other industries.
Such meetings also provide job applications opportunities to the inmates. During the meetings, the inmates fill out on their preferred available positions.
The job fair meetings spare some little time for the representatives of the program to speak to these Arizona prison inmates about their strengths and plans.
The inmates also get some time to go through hands-on training. The prisons have a set apart area where the inmates can be trained in masonry work and other construction industry skills. The second chance program’s goal is to stimulate the “real days at work”. They get to familiarize themselves on what to expect and how to handle work after release.
Government Support for the Second Chance Program in Arizona Prisons
The Second Chance started early last year. Governor Doug Ducey has backed the initiative since its inception. This support has seen the number of Arizona prison inmates in the program triple.
On October 23, Ducey visited a second Chance center at Arizona State prison Complex-Lewis. He was accompanied by some Arizona Cardinals namely:
- President Michael Bidwill
- Corey Peters (a player)
- Antoine Bethea (a player)
According to the governor, Arizona’s state authorities are working hard to make sure that through the Second Chance program the inmates are well prepared to re-enter society successfully.
With second chance programs in the prisons, recidivism is expected to drastically reduce. Therefore, more Arizona prisons should shut down rather than multiply.