The Second Chance Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-199) provides a comprehensive response to the increasing number of incarcerated adults and juveniles who are released from prison, jail, and juvenile residential facilities and returning to communities. There are currently over 2.2 million individuals serving time in our federal and state prisons, and millions of people cycling through tribal and local jails every year . Ninety-five percent of all people incarcerated today will eventually be released and will return to communities. The coordination of reentry of members of Native American tribes is even more complex given that they can return from federal, Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), state, local, and tribal facilities. The Second Chance Act helps to ensure that the transition individuals make from prison, jail, or juvenile residential facilities to the community is successful and promotes public safety.
The Second Chance Act Programs are designed to help communities develop and implement comprehensive and collaborative strategies that address the challenges posed by reentry and recidivism reduction. "Reentry" is not a specific program, but rather a process that starts when an individual is initially incarcerated and ends when he or she has been successfully reintegrated in the community as a law-abiding citizen. The reentry process includes screening and assessment in a pre-release setting, the delivery of evidence-based programming in a pre-release setting, and the delivery of a variety of evidence-based programming for every program participant in a post-release setting designed to ensure that the transition from prison or jail to the community is safe and successful.