TERREBONNE PARISH TRANSITIONAL
For the last several years, the Louisiana Department of Public Safety & Corrections has been working to reduce its incarceration rate, currently highest in the nation per capita. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, Louisiana’s incarceration rate is the highest in the nation per capita.
Roughly 50 percent of the people serving prison time are assigned to local-level jails and transitional work programs. Each year, approximately 18,000 people release from state prisons and jails to communities across Louisiana. Many face challenges of finding a place to live, finding employment, and accessing services and programs that will assist them in successfully reintegrating into their communities. Unfortunately, within a few years, nearly half of people who are released from prison will return to prison.
To make significant progress in reducing incarceration and recidivism costs, both in dollars and in negative impact to victims, communities, and families, the Department focused on reaching people serving DPS&C prison sentences on the local level because these individuals were traditionally left out of programming opportunities offered at state correctional facilities. The Department, in collaboration with Sheriffs, opened nine Regional Reentry Programs to offer the Department’s Standardized Pre-Release Curriculum 2010 and Certified Treatment and Rehabilitative Programs (CTRP), which allow people in prison to learn basic work readiness preparation, money management, substance abuse education and treatment, parenting, anger management, and other life skills prior to their release. Individuals are also able to obtain their high school diploma if they did not graduate.
Certain individuals may be eligible to enter the program from 6 months to 4 years left of their sentence. Individuals who are selected to the program are required to work at an approved job, and then return back to the correctional facility. While in this program, the individuals have to pay for room and board, clothing, medical care, etc. This is a huge saving to tax payers since tax dollars are mostly not used to pay for an individual’s incarceration. The individual themselves also become tax payer’s and also pay for their fines, child support, court cost, and victim restitution. While at their jobs, deputies of the Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office routinely inspect the job site and check in on the individual.
These programs have been proven to reduce the recidivism rate. These programs give an individual who will be released from prison the opportunity to become a productive member of society and not a burden on society upon their release.