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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 200000 Find in a Library
Title: Class I Impacts: Work During Incarceration and Its Effects on Post-Prison Employment Patterns and Recidivism
Author(s): Elizabeth K. Drake
Corporate Author: Washington State Dept of Corrections
Division of Planning and Research Section
United States of America
Date Published: February 2003
Page Count: 31
Sponsoring Agency: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Washington State Dept of Corrections
Olympia, WA 98504-1108
Sale Source: Washington State Dept of Corrections
Division of Planning and Research Section
P.O. Box 41108
MS: 41108
Olympia, WA 98504-1108
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined how in-prison employment during incarceration impacted inmates in terms of in-prison behavior, post-prison employment patterns, and recidivism.
Abstract: A total of 424 offenders residing within the Washington State Department of Corrections who held Class I jobs while incarcerated were compared to a total of 403 offenders who were not employed during incarceration. Class I jobs are those that involve a contract between the Department of Corrections and a private sector business. The comparison group matched the test group in terms of sex, offense, age, race, and number of years incarcerated. Findings indicate that in-prison behavior was not impacted by in-prison employment; there was no significant difference in the rate of infractions received between the two groups. In terms of post-release employment, those offenders who participated in Class I industries had a higher rate of employment than the control group. However, the top three predictors of obtaining employment after release from prison were being a drug offender, being a sex offender, and having at least a high school education. Furthermore, for both the test group and the control group, younger offenders were more likely to gain employment upon release than were older offenders. Class I participants earned higher wages within 1 year of release than did offenders who did not engage in Class I industries while incarcerated. Finally, the results revealed that the test group recidivated at a lower rate than the control group; 17 percent and 24 percent, respectively. Also, Class I participants who gained employment upon release had a lower recidivism rate than Class I participants who did not gain employment upon release. Overall, the study indicates that those offenders involved in Class I employment while incarcerated fared better than did their unemployed counterparts. The only category in which there was no difference between the test group and the control group was in infractions, indicating that offenders who were employed were no different from unemployed offenders in terms of in-prison behavior. Recommendations for future research includes the use of a pre-post quasi-experimental design in order to further isolate and understand the effects of in-prison employment on inmate outcomes. Tables, references
Main Term(s): Employment; Inmate Programs
Index Term(s): Barriers to ex-offender employment; Employment services; Employment-crime relationships; Inmate misconduct; Inmate vocational training; Unemployment; Washington
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