Re-entry Manual a guide for Texans


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Re-entry Manual


Acknowledgements

  • We would like to thank everyone who provided feedback and guidance on this manual including Rep. McReynolds, Rep. Madden, Dee Wilson, and Stuart Jenkins.



Fast Facts

  • Total TDCJ releases in 2009 (Prison, State Jail, SAFP) = 72,218

  • Of those released, 32,705 are on a flat discharge and not under supervision

  • 54.1% of individuals currently incarcerated have a sentence of 10 years or less



Purpose of Manual

  • To aid individuals who are preparing for release and those who have recently been released from a period of incarceration with their adjustment back to their communities by addressing such issues as housing, employment, community assistance, and adjustment



Purpose of Manual, cont.

  • Provide a comprehensive resource guide that addresses chief concerns of population including housing, employment, and community assistance

  • Focus on individuals released on a full discharge who do not receive assistance from parole and who are not being supervised



Layout of Manual

  • Two sections:

    • Part One – Focuses on pre-release
    • Part Two – Post-release resources and information
  • Ten Chapters

  • Spotlight features on key successful groups and programs

  • Feedback Form



Chapter 1: Preparing for Release

  • Written by guest author Jorge Antonio Renaud

  • Formerly incarcerated individual; wanted to use his experiences to speak directly to our targeted audience

  • Sections

  • Reform Your Habits Before Release

  • Practical Plans and Goals

  • Dealing With Family

  • After You’re Out

  • Asking For and Accepting Help

  • Housing

  • Working With Your Community Supervision Officer



Chapter 2: Getting Out

  • Re-entry Related Legislative Updates

  • Adjusting to the Free World

  • Obtaining Identification Documents

  • Child Support

  • Managing Money and Acquiring Loans



Chapter 3: Community Organizations

  • Community resources include groups that provide direct assistance to individuals

  • May include food pantries, counseling services, rent and utility assistance, clothing, and more

  • Resources are organized by region:

    • Central Texas
    • Northeast Texas
    • South Texas
    • West Texas
    • High Plains


Texas Regions

  • Central Texas: Includes Austin, San Marcos, San Antonio, and surrounding cities

  • Northeast Texas: Includes Dallas/Ft. Worth, Huntsville, Texarkana, and surrounding cities

  • South Texas: Includes Houston, Galveston, Corpus Christi, South Padre, Brownsville, and surrounding cities

  • West Texas: Includes Big Spring, El Paso, San Angelo, and surrounding cities

  • High Plains: Includes Abilene, Amarillo, Wichita Falls, and surrounding cities



Chapter 4: Housing

  • Information about the Housing Assistance Program (established through passage of H.B. 3226)

  • Information on public housing options for convicted felons

  • Regional Resources

  • Housing resources specific to sex offenders and individuals on electronic monitors



Chapter 5: Community Health Support

  • Nearly all individuals released from prison and returning to communities across the United States have chronic health conditions that require on-going treatment. In fact, most have a combination of physical, mental health, and substance abuse conditions.

  • (Urban Institute, “Health and Prisoner Reentry: How Physical, Mental, and Substance Abuse Conditions Shape the Process of Reintegration”, 2008, Mallik-Kane, Kamala and Visher, Christy A)



Community Health Support, cont.

  • Spotlight features on MHMR centers throughout the state and TCOOMMI

  • Regional Resources include addiction recovery services, mental health services including counseling and therapy, low-income general health clinics, dental clinics, HIV/AIDS case management, and more



Chapter 6: Finding Employment

  • Your Rights Against Discrimination in the Workplace

  • Workforce Development for Disabled Individuals

  • The Job Search

  • Getting the Job

  • Resumes and Cover Letters

  • Job Applications and Interviews

  • Follow Up and Job Retention



Chapter 7: Benefits and Assistance Overview of available assistance:

  • Social Security / Disability Benefits

  • SNAP and TANF

  • Texas Department of Assistance and Rehabilitative Services

  • Information for Veterans

  • Regional Resources



Chapter 8: Education

  • GED preparation information and resources

  • General financial aid eligibility information

  • Regional Resources, including literacy programs, ESL courses, GED preparation, and more



Chapter 9: Getting Involved

  • Voting Information – Basic voting information including eligibility

  • Civic Groups – Resources for organizations that encourage civic participation

  • Community/Support Groups of formerly incarcerated individuals

  • Giving Back to Your Community



Feedback

  • Includes a feedback form for individuals who wish to make comments, changes, or share their experiences

  • Feedback is encourages as it is crucial to the improvement of future editions



Closing

  • Questions/Comments

  • For additional information, please contact Ana Yanez-Correa at (512) 441-8123 ext. 109 or acorrea@criminaljusticecoalition.org

  • You may also visit our website for additional information and updates:

  • http://www.criminaljusticecoalition.org




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