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The Oregon Accountability Model - Accountability Reentry
Oregon Accountability Reentry
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The Oregon Accountability Model encompasses the simultaneous, coordinated and efficient implementation of many Department of Corrections initiatives and projects that provide a foundation for inmates to lead successful lives upon release.
The Oregon Accountability Model has six components. Each of these components stands on its own as a project or a part of the Oregon Department of Corrections’ organization and culture. However, woven together these six separate components form a stronger fiber that strengthens the department’s ability to hold inmates/offenders accountable for their actions and DOC staff accountable for achieving the mission and vision of the department.
The Reentry Component of the Oregon Accountability Model
The department is involved in a statewide project that focuses on transition – a seamless movement of offenders from court to incarceration to community supervision. The project would limit duplication of services and increase effective and efficient use of partnerships.
Reentry Facilities
Seven of the department’s prisons have been identified as reentry facilities. These prisons are strategically located to encourage reach-in by the community. Inmates are transferred to a reentry facility closest to their home community six months before their release from incarceration. Connections with the community before release are important factors in offenders’ successes on the outside, and may include work, treatment, religion, and housing. The time spent at a reentry facility is geared towards preparing inmates for release.
Criminal Risk Factors Identified and Mitigated
The department is implementing an enhanced assessment process. The outcome will be an automated corrections plan for every inmate that is tracked throughout an inmate’s incarceration and supervision in the community. The corrections plan is based on mitigating seven criminal risk factors that research indicates predict future criminal behavior. The department provides targeted programs and services to mitigate these risk factors during incarceration and community supervision. Counselors at the reentry prisons work with inmates to evaluate which risk areas have been mitigated and which areas will need to be addressed once the inmate is released to community supervision. A plan is developed jointly with the inmate, community corrections and the Board of Parole and Post-Prison Supervision.
Family Orientation
The Department of Corrections has partnered with county community corrections agencies, the Board of Parole and Post-Prison and Oregon CURE (“Citizens United for the Rehabilitation of Errants”) to develop and deliver an orientation for family members of inmates who will soon be released to Multnomah County (which receives approximately 1/3 or all releases).
The orientation provides family members with information about the inmate’s stay at the reentry facility, how to reach-in and advocate for a loved one during this time of transition, what to expect when the inmate is released to post-prison supervision, and how to partner with the community corrections staff to help promote and support positive change in the offender while on supervision. Additionally, family members are provided information about support groups and resources that are available to them within the community.
Oregon Trail/Offender Debit Card:
Building on the Oregon Trail Card model developed by the Oregon Department of Human Services for food stamps and other public assistance, inmates leaving Oregon prisons now receive “Offender Debit Cards” instead of checks for any monies in their trust accounts. The cards can be used at most automatic teller machines (ATMs) for cash or for purchases at point-of-sale machines in stores that accept the Oregon Trail Card. In addition, because the Offender Debit Card is identical to the DHS Oregon Trail Card, inmates eligible for public assistance can access those benefits from the card issued by the Department of Corrections.
Smart Start
The department partnered with the Department of Human Services to deliver sexual health and family planning information to inmates during their last few months before release. Additionally, when inmates leave a DOC facility they receive a bag of over-the-counter birth control and personal hygiene items known as “Smart Start” packets.
The Oregon Accountability Model
The ultimate goal of the Oregon Accountability Model is to improve public safety. The model ties together many concurrent and interrelated efforts of the department and its partners into a cohesive strategy to reduce recidivism and influence inmates into becoming productive citizens.
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