Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $749,311)
The mission of the Delaware County Reentry Coalition is to enhance the Delaware County community by undertaking a broad approach to create and strengthen support networks that encourage dignity, address basic needs, and reset positive self-images for incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals. This Coalition is partnering with Public Health Management Corporation (PHMC) to implement comprehensive pre- and post-release support services for individuals transitioning from George W. Hill Correctional Facility (GWH) to the Delaware County community.
The Delaware County Reentry Program (DCRP) will begin when individuals are incarcerated and continue through their reintegration into the community and beyond. Building on the methodology of a reentry program with proven success in neighboring Philadelphia, DCRP will streamline communications, referrals, and services between incarcerated individuals, courts, prison, probation, and provider agencies.
DCRP will be based on an existing prison deferral program, Forensic Intensive Recovery (FIR), which aims to reduce criminal recidivism by empowering individuals to become productive, self-sufficient citizens who maintain gainful employment while simultaneously maintaining substance-free lifestyle. By treating the root cause of many crimes, this program can simultaneously reduce recidivism, save the lives of offenders and their children, reduce the jail population, and enhance community safety. FIR offers a system that emphasizes community partnership, evidence-based research, peer support, and quality care.
In alignment with priority (1A), the program will remove barriers of access and opportunity by serving communities which are historically underserved. Two-thirds of the incarcerated population is African American—nearly three times the percentage of African Americans in the Delaware County community (23%). In alignment with priority (2A), PHMC will implement activities that have been demonstrated effective in facilitating the successful reentry of individuals who have been incarcerated. This program has been proven to reduce rates of reincarceration and increase time to reincarceration; an evaluation of FIR showed that individuals who completed a minimum of 6 months in the program were 66% less likely to be convicted of a new crime.
PHMC proposes to serve 100 individuals per year, for a total of 300 over the three-year project period. Programming would specifically target the subset of that population needing community-based treatment (mental health, substance abuse, medical illnesses, psycho-social, etc.) and support services.