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Articles Tagged with recidivism

Now for some good news. Chicago introduced an anti-violence program geared toward inmates who were convicted of violent crimes. While this does not sound like the kind of measure that would produce positive results, the data would indicate otherwise. According to the latest data, those who took part in the READI program were 67% less likely to be involved in a subsequent gun crime and 20% less likely to be the victim of gun violence. 

What does the data say? Well, even as gun violence and crime rates spike throughout the city of Chicago, those who participated in the READI program showed dwindling rates. Those who attended the program had an average of 17 raps on their sheet and many of them had been the victims of gun violence before. Overall, 2500 men were selected for READI Chicago. When compared against a similar group of 2500 men who did not partake in the program, the crime rates were massively lower. The intensive 18-month program was targeted to at-risk males in the Chicago area. The names were drawn algorithmically but focused on those who had violent histories.

Why is This Program Succeeding?

DSC_0289Pursuant to Illinois law, all prison inmates are eligible for parole unless they have accepted a fixed release established by the Prison Review Board. The guidelines for determining eligibility for parole consideration are when a minimum term of an “indeterminate” as opposed to a “determinate” sentence has been served. A “determinate” prison sentence is a defined length of time to be served by the inmate and cannot be changed without executive clemency from the governor. Whereas, with an “indeterminate” sentence, there is a minimum time that the inmate will have to serve, but his release date may be earlier depending on what the Prison Review Board decides. Inmates may, after serving 20 years of a life sentence less any credit for good behavior, be released on parole. Inmates may also be released after serving one third of a “determinate” sentence less credit for good behavior. Persons serving a prison term of “natural life” are not eligible for parole.

What is the Prison Review Board?

The Illinois Prison Review Board is made up of 15 individuals appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the State Senate. The Board is responsible for reviewing inmates for potential release. They are also responsible for determining the conditions and restrictions of prisoner release. The Board will also review cases involving potential revocation of parole due to any violations of any conditions or restrictions imposed. The Board may also consider whether an inmate’s attitude or conduct deserves a reduction or suspension of good conduct credits.

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