Department of Corrections
Department Receives Funding for Re-entry Hotline
FRANKFORT, KY – Kentucky Department of Corrections’ Commissioner John Rees today announced the establishment of a “Re-entry Hotline” for inmates that are being released from prison. The program is funded by a grant from the United States Department of Justice.
“The need for innovative solutions to solve the problem of prisoner re-entry is clear. Most ex-offenders return to their neighborhoods ill-equipped to meet the everyday challenges of life.” said Rees. Confronted with minimal job opportunities, housing issues, and the lack of other support, many ex-offenders often recidivate. Nationally, nearly two-thirds of former inmates are re-arrested within three years after release.
Currently, offenders are released from prison with limited resources and primarily depend on the local Probation and Parole office for referrals and resource information. By providing offenders with a toll free number for resources that will be staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days per week, offenders will be able to develop cohesive plans for success in their home community.
The Re-entry Hotline is designed to provide information, referrals, and resources to offenders upon release from prison. By providing the hotline as an option for seeking assistance, the Kentucky Department of Corrections anticipates hotline callers will: 1) abstain or decrease use of drugs/alcohol; 2) comply with laws and the stipulations of their parole to avoid revocation; and, 3) utilize information to seek resources in their communities. As a result of the program, individuals will be able to cope with the daily stresses of life and avoid substance use and criminal activity. Overall, the program will increase public safety and reduce the long-term costs associated with recidivism.
To provide offenders access to 24-hour resource information, the Kentucky Department of Corrections has provided training to inmates that have graduated the substance abuse program within the prison system. These inmate resource specialists will provide local community information to offenders that call the number, which may include workforce development information, treatment referrals, faith based/community program referrals, and other necessary information.
Local jails may also choose to notify their misdemeanor inmates regarding the available resource telephone line. With access to resources 24-hours per day, offenders will be able to develop cohesive support systems based on their community programs.