Parties on both sides of the aisle agree that prison reform must happen. However, what policy solutions would work best and how should they be implemented?

Over 2.3 million Americans have spent at least some part of their life behind bars in prison. Once out of prison, 70% of ex-convicts are arrested within three years of release and over half are still unemployed after one year. The systems and processes in place, currently, to reintegrate inmates back into society are obviously failing.

According to this article: “As “reentry” grows into a more pressing issue in national policy, a set of new ideas is emerging about how best to reduce this second, long-term cost of imprisonment. Nonprofits, businesses and state and local governments have all led efforts that have improved the re-entry process for a group of people in a measurable way—whether by boosting wages, increasing employments rates, decreasing homelessness or registering voters.”

As different organizations and institutions try to help those coming out of prisons re-establish themselves and their lives, it is important to keep in mind possible solutions that have worked elsewhere or show much promise. A great solution to start with is giving higher wage jobs and positions inside prisons to teach inmates valuable career skills while building up their personal savings accounts. Another forgotten but important solution would be getting inmates a state I.D. on release. This new I.D. will allow them to vote, open bank accounts, get a job, and perform countless important tasks. At the end of the day, we need to empower and enable our inmates to come out of prison with a plan and the right resources to get their life back on track.

If you or a loved one has been arrested or incarcerated and needs help, call us toll-free at 833-854-8181, or visit one of our offices out of Lake Havasu City, Bullhead City, or Tempe, AZ.

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