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What’s next for Minnesota’s ex-cons?

May 16, 2010

Following a national model, the effort seeks to begin re-entry efforts the day an inmate enters prison rather than a few months before the offender is released.

….The MCORP concept launched a pilot project more than two years ago. The targeted population: prison inmates from selected communities in the state — Hennepin, Ramsey, Dodge, Fillmore and Olmsted counties. These counties are among those that annually send state prisons the most returning offenders.

The effort tries to reduce community-based probation officer caseloads, ramp up post-release supervision as well as provide housing, employment and social-support services. Bottom line: make the lockup-to-release support transition as seamless as possible.

Of 269 selected inmates, 175 were steered for MCORP interdiction. That included a host of jobs, education, chemical-dependency treatment, restorative justice and other post-release offerings. Most notably, perhaps, the program significantly reduced — by roughly half — the offender-release caseload handled by county probation officers.

In contrast, 94 offenders were selected as a control group to undergo existing offender-release referral efforts.

The outcome? Consider a preliminary in-house evaluation by Dr. Grant Duwe, the state prison system’s research director.

….The project:


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