Even as the Connecticut government is closing prisons and reducing the prison population to the lowest level since the 1970s – a good thing – the fiscal crisis has caused it to terminate the funding for and close EVERY community-based nonresidential prisoner reentry behavioral health program in the state. (Family ReEntry’s residential and intervention programs were unaffected.) This means thousands of people, many or most of them people of color, will be released from jails and prisons this year without access to mental health services, substance abuse counseling, life skills training, family therapy, housing opportunities, education, or even minimum wage jobs. Without this critical support, research shows that most will likely recidivate and will return to prison in record numbers…but not before they re-engage in the very behavior for which they were incarcerated in the first place. A very bad thing – for everyone.
“With the help of Family Reentry, I was able to finally have my first shot at honest employment. The re-entry team (which has become my own family) gave me the push I needed to go to college and work hard to be where I want to be in life. Family ReEntry is filled with people that are willing to help, support, encourage and motivate anyone who needs them.” —Tavon Williams (Warehouse Worker, CDI & full time student at HCC — released March 2016)
With fewer government dollars to support our mission, Family ReEntry is getting creative. We are seeking out and finding innovative solutions for these critical problems. Our new First Chance Society initiative is designed to disrupt the intergenerational cycle of incarceration by giving at-risk youth and families a first chance at the kind of opportunities that they may have been denied because of poverty, race and/or zip code. And, giving returning citizens the first chance they may have never had before their incarceration. We are growing our award-winning programs – Family ReEntry is opening four new intervention programs with even more new programs on the horizon. And we are up at the Capitol intensely advocating for criminal justice reform and fairness for all.
“I was officially hired in October full-time as a driver for the lumber yard. I am proud to say I am currently employed today because of the opportunity Family ReEntry afforded me.” —Marcellus Ruffin (Driver, Northeast Building Supplies — released June 2014)
Family ReEntry Needs Your Help. At this time, when we and the people we serve need your help more than ever, we hope you will consider making a tax-deductible donation to Family ReEntry’s 2016-17 Annual Appeal.
Mail your donations to:
Family ReEntry, Inc., 75 Washington Avenue, Bridgeport, CT 06604
Thank you in advance for your donation. I hope to meet you soon and thank you personally.
Jeff Grant, JD, M Div, Executive Director
Family ReEntry’s mission is to develop, implement, and share sustainable, cost-effective solutions for the unprecedented numbers of people involved in the criminal justice system, which empower individuals, strengthen families, and build communities.