This overview of the U.S. Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Assistance’s (BJA’s) Statewide Recidivism Reduction Initiative (SRRI), authorized under the federal Second Chance Act (SCA), reviews the grant program’s purpose, eligibility, funding amount, allowable uses of funds, and highlights of three grantee programs for fiscal year (FY) 2014.
Signed into law in April 2008 and reauthorized in 2018, the SCA aims to improve public safety by reducing recidivism and improving services for those returning to their communities from prisons, jails, and juvenile facilities. The SRRI grant program aims to help executive- branch policymakers and state corrections departments set measurable recidivism-reduction goals and develop practical, data-driven plans to achieve them. With the support of BJA training and technical assistance, state grantees are assisted in developing strategic plans informed by a data-driven assessment of the needs of the target population and drivers of recidivism in the state, and the reentry system policies and structure. This program has been part of the SCA suite of programs since fiscal year (FY) 2012. Since then, just over 23 awards have been made, totaling $32.4 million. SRRI grantees engage in up to 4 years of planning and implementation that address the drivers of recidivism and review the alignment of existing programs and practices with evidence-based practices. After highlighting the achievements of three grantees for FY 2014, this report outlines features of successful SRRI programs for reducing recidivism, including partnerships with key stakeholders; the use of data to analyze drivers of recidivism and the effectiveness of efforts to prevent it; and development of a culture of committed leadership and staff engagement.
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