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NCJ Number: 205854 Find in a Library
Title: Skill Sets and Health Care Needs of Released Offenders (From Prisoners Once Removed: The Impact of Incarceration and Reentry on Children, Families, and Communities, P 105-153, 2003, Jeremy Travis and Michelle Waul, eds. -- See NCJ-205850)
Author(s): Gerald G. Gaes; Newton Kendig
Date Published: 2003
Page Count: 49
Sponsoring Agency: Urban Institute Press
Washington, DC 20037
Sale Source: Urban Institute Press
2100 M Street., NW
Washington, DC 20037
United States of America
Type: Instructional Material; Issue Overview
Format: Book (Softbound)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This chapter updates the previous literature on inmate needs and the programs designed to address those needs; and it discusses the medical/mental health needs of released inmates and the barriers they encounter both within the criminal justice system and the community, as well as obstacles to productive prison programming.
Abstract: The chapter's first section briefly reviews some of the literature on skill sets and introduces a classification (taxonomy) of these skills as a framework for understanding, assessing, and remedying skill deficiencies. Proficiency is discussed for the following skills: academic skills, vocational skills/correctional work, interpersonal skills, leisure-time skills, cognitive skills, spirituality/ethical skills, daily living skills, wellness skills, mental health skills, and accountability skills. A table compares postrelease success/failure rates for the various reentry skill sets. The second section of the chapter reviews the literature on in-prison programs designed to address the cited skill deficiencies. This section also discusses the value of cost-benefit analyses and reviews in detail a report by Aos et al. (2001) that has been the most comprehensive attempt to assign cost-benefit calculations to criminal justice programs. The chapter's third section draws on data from the Bureau of Prisons and a recent study by the National Commission on Correctional Health Care as it summarizes the health and mental health needs of returning ex-inmates. The fourth section identifies the barriers the criminal justice system and communities face in addressing inmate skill deficiencies and medical needs. Most of these barriers stem from the fact that the various agencies that provide services and supervision for these offenders focus on their own internal missions rather than on the offenders' broader reintegration needs. The chapter's fifth section examines the role of the ex-inmate as parent in the reintegration process, a skill domain for which little research exists. The concluding section of the chapter introduces a "self help" model that integrates concepts in both the medical and skill-set literature. The chapter also discusses the limitations of the "what works" model, which focuses on interventions that primarily address the propensity to commit crime. The chapter advises that what is needed is a coherent theory that relates the skills/needs literature to other theories about crime that consider social context, opportunity, and social embeddedness (the extent to which an individual considers herself/himself a member of a family, group, or community). 7 tables, 14 notes, and 66 references
Main Term(s): Corrections policies
Index Term(s): Children of incarcerated offenders; Families of Prisoners/Inmate Families; Inmate academic education; Inmate Education Assistance Programs; Inmate vocational training; Life skills training; Offender mental health services; Post-release programs; Prerelease programs; Reentry; Social skills training
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