Prisoner Re-Entry Programs and Recidivism Rates


Prisoner re-entry programs have over the years been seen to be significant in reducing the rates of recidivism.Though the programs have proved quiet effective in reducing the rates of prisoner recidivism after being released from jail and prison most of them tends to fail on the way hence they end up not achieving its required objective of reducing recidivism rates. Different reasons have been associated on why most of Prisoner re-entry programs fail hence though insufficient resources is one of the significant reasons associated with their failure.

This paper, therefore, intends to analyze the hypothesis of whether Prisoner re-entry programs fail due to the provision of inadequate resources thus increasing recidivism. This research study will present research study on Prisoner re-entry programs and recidivism rates. The paper, therefore, covers research objectives, aims, research questions, the significance of the study, methodology, literature review, and theoretical orientation of the study, limitations, discussion and finally conclusions. The results findings show that inadequate resources are one of the key reasons why most of the Prisoner re-entry programs fail hence causing an increase in the rates of recidivism. From the findings, high rates of recidivism are associated with neighborhoods which are more disadvantaged with lower median family income and the higher percentage of residents on public assistance and living below the poverty level. Though, findings indicates that inadequate resources is one of the reasons why many of the prisoner re-entry programs fail there are other essential reasons such as poor management, employment and social discrimination as well as lack of family support.

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Research Significance

Primarily the research aims at finding out if inadequate resources actually cause prisoner re-entry programs to fail hence causing high rates of recidivism. In relation, to this, the research findings will be important to various states since it will help them put in place necessary measures related to resource management as the way of ensuring that the prisoner re-entry programs succeed more effectively. More, the research study will help various individuals and organizations involved in the development and implementation of Prisoner re-entry programs to put in place necessary management measures that ensures the success of the programs hence enabling them to reduce the rates of recidivism.


Prisoner re-entry programs play a fundamental role in the society since they help in reducing recidivism rates as mostly they are programs which are targeted at promoting the effective reintegration of offenders back to the communities after being released from prison and jail. Primarily, the programs help prisoners released from jail and prisoner to adapt back to the community as well as be accepted by the community members (Brooks, 2008). These programs equip the offenders with necessary skills required to succeed life as well as in the community as law-abiding citizens. For these programs to work well sufficient resources are usually required hence in most cases they tend to fail as a result of inadequate resources to effectively support and carry out these reentry programs. It is quiet evident that former prisoners who join

Problem of Statement

This paper intends to analyze whether insufficient resources is a key reason why many of the prisoner reentry programs fail leading to high rates of recidivism rates.

Research questions

The objective of this study is to examine whether Prisoner re-entry programs fail due to the provision of inadequate resources thus increasing recidivism

The study shall, therefore, be guided by the following primary question:

  • Why do most of Prisoner re-entry programs fail?
  • Why are Prisoner re-entry programs important in a society?

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The study will further evaluate the primary question by considering the following supportive questions:

  • What impact does Prisoner re-entry programs have on a society?
  • Do Prisoner re-entry programs help prisoners to be accepted and live hormonally in the society after being released from jail and prison?
  • What challenges do these programs face?


Prisoner re-entry programs fail due to the provision of inadequate resources thus increasing recidivism


This study will be associated with several limitations. However, it is expected that these limitations will not affect the methodology and validity of the data collected. The first limitation is associated with time limitation. The time available to carry out the research is limited which will affect the scope and the expected results of the study. The other limitation is related to the data collection methods and sample.

Due to the time limitation of time small sample size will be used for data collection and the data collected may not be reflective of the actual situations on the ground. The response expected to be received from the respondents maybe biased and some respondents may deliberately give false information which may interfere with the accuracy of the study. Additionally, due to time limitation the scope of the study is very narrow hence the sample selected may not represent a true picture of

Literature Review

Prisoner re-entry programs are important in any society since they provide individual reentry plans for the prisoners when it comes to addressing the issues confronting them as law offenders when they return to the community. Once the prisoners have been released from jail or prison adjusting back to normal life is usually a problem especially if the prisoners have in adequate resources to start there life from scratch as well as if the lack necessary skills to get employment (Jeremy, 2000).

With in adequate resources to effectively run and operate prison re-entry programs some prisoners usually find themselves back in crime as way of surviving. Insufficient resources therefore is one of the challenges that most of the communities and individual parties involved in developing as well as implementing Prisoner re-entry programs today face. As a result of this challenge many of them tends to fail before achieving their initial objecting leading to an increase in the rates of recidivism. Though, over the years many states have put in place policies and regulation associated with prisoner re-entry programs many of them end up failing (Meredith,2003).The failures of the prisoner re-entry programs all over the world has increased the problem of recidivism which has recently become a crisis problem affecting most of the communities with serious high risk offenders. According to the studies done by it indicates that a few of the offenders released usually stay out of trouble for the first three years while others due to poor monitoring and supervision usually commit serious offenses under parole supervision hence end up being jailed again.

Various communities and individual organizations use a variety of programs to assist offenders in their re-entry process including pre-release programs, drug rehabilitation and vocational training, and work programs. Despite the mere fact that re-entry programs play a significant role in reducing recidivism, the federal and state policies devote insufficient resources making them not to achieve the target.

Primarily the Prisoner re-entry programs provide an opportunity to shape the offenders behaviours during their transition process back to their normal life as well as families hence reducing recidivism rates among them. In addition, they offer ability to the prisoners to deal with violations of the post-release supervision hence adapting effectively in the society. Facilitating successful re-entry programs usually leads to the better and more functional lives for the former offenders as well as their families and communities. Resources are usually important in re-entry programs facilitation to the prisoners. This is because sufficient resources enables organizations involved in implementing and developing these programs to provide sufficient educational as well as training skills to the prisoners as well as other social amenities such housing which in the end helps them to live well. Without such resources it becomes hard for these programs to effectively operate hence end up not achieving their desired objectives of helping the prisoners (Zamble & Vernon, 2001).

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Though, various prisoner re-entry programs have different kinds of features and meant for different kinds of law offenders all these programs have one objective of achieving effective correctional interventions. Research study done by Solomon and Michelle (2008), indicates that high rates of incarceration are usually experienced in communities which do not have adequate resources to effectively run the re-entry programs. Offenders returning to unsafe neighbourhoods which lack adequate social capital as well as unemployment opportunities present a high risk of greater recidivism.

According Johnson (2007), to high rates of recidivism are associated with neighbourhoods which are more disadvantaged with lower median family income and higher percentage of residents on public assistance and living below the poverty level. According to the survey undertaken by Tracy and Johnson (2007), the risk of high recidivism rates was seen among offenders was related to the living in neighbourhoods where relative inequality was greater. Resource deprivation, unemployment, increase levels of poverty are perceived to be significant causes of high rates of recidivism rates among offenders.

In most cases Re-entry programs usually focus there resources on employment in relation to its importance hence allowing most of the offenders to be productive members in the community. Without enough resources it becomes difficult for organizations running these programs to adequately meet the needs of the former offenders (Piehl, 2002) In order to carry out effective prison re-entry programs for prisoners, prisons may establish programs with local businesses to train inmates with certain training educational skills. Though, this case securing reasonable and sustainable employment for these prisoners is usually a problem especially for the parolees re-entering the community. Many programs experience a number of barriers as well as challenges in adequately fulfilling the employment needs of the former prisoners.

According to studies done by (Jeff, 2004), indicates that though some prisons may have particular job related programs available for various kinds of inmates, the openings are usually limited hence most of the time the number of inmates is usually greater than the number of openings available. Moreover, former prisoners with felony records find it hard to get employment given their perceived risk and potential public fear hence only a few of the inmate’s end of getting employment while the rest cannot making them less marketable on their return to the community.

This significantly affects them causing most of them to return back to crimes they prior committed as result of social and community discrimination (David, 2007). For many of the paroling offenders, education is usually essential for their first step reintegration process. Though, this the case many studies indicates that limited resources have limited paroling offenders educational access hence most of these lack basic educational skills making most of them less marketable once they return to the society.

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