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Stable Housing Supports Safer Communities

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Presentation on theme: "Stable Housing Supports Safer Communities"— Presentation transcript:

1 Stable Housing Supports Safer Communities
Minnesota Department of Corrections

2 Minnesota Department of Corrections
Mission Statement: To hold offenders accountable and offer opportunities for change while restoring justice for victims and contributing to a safer Minnesota.

3 Minnesota Department of Corrections - Probation
Approximately 116,000 people on probation in MN (“2012 Probation Survey” - 60,000 = 7 county metro area 56,000 = Non-metro counties Approximately 900 in Clay Co. (78% male; 22% female) Numbers reflect data gathered between Dec. 31st 2011 to Dec. 31st 2012. 2013 Probation Survey has not yet been released … will be released in April or May of 2014

4 Minnesota Department of Corrections – Supervised Release
Supervised Release = Supervised Release, Parole, Intensive Supervised Release, Challenge Incarceration Program 6,015 Individuals released in 2012 83 Individuals released to Clay Co. Determinate Sentencing – 2/3 in; 1/3 out on supervision (i.e. supervised release). Indeterminate Sentencing – “Sentenced to years” – parole board meets to determine release, some older sentences where individuals have served lengthy prison sentences are still governed under indeterminate sentencing and individuals are released on “parole”. “83” – Under-reported …does not indicate the number of individuals that may move to the area after release considering that Moorhead is a larger city in a rural region.

5 Minnesota Department of Corrections
Our Vision Foster community partnerships Optimizing best practices Creating a respectful diverse culture Utilizing effective communication Strategic and efficient use of resources FOCUS on reducing risk

6 Evolution of MN DOC Housing Services
1800s-1980s – Halfway Houses. 1990s – Increase in facility based programs that targeted chemical dependency and issues associated with sexually based offenses – releases to CD and SO treatment programs increased. Definition of Halfway House: A halfway house is a place to allow people to begin the process of reintegration with society, while still providing monitoring and support; this is generally believed to reduce the risk of recidivism or relapse when compared to a release directly into society. Halfway houses are meant for reintegration of persons who have been recently released from jail or a mental institution. There is often opposition from neighborhoods where halfway houses attempt to locate. Halfway houses are still used to this day, but there is research that indicates that this model of housing utilized in offender reentry is not effective for many individuals – inspires criminal activity, supports instability, supports social stigmas, etc.

7 Evolution of MN DOC Housing Services
2000s – Offender Reentry – targeted focus for policy makers Q) What did this mean for the DOC? A) Additional budgetary support within the DOC for housing based services. DOC Leased ISR residences Emergency Housing Funds/Female Offender Housing Funds Only for individuals being released from MN Correctional Facilities – i.e. supervised release population.

8 MN DOC Housing Services
2010 – DOC Field Services Housing Coordinator Work to increase housing resources available to clients on correctional supervision. Assist agents in accessing and/or referring clients to housing/homeless related resources. (DOC and/or non-DOC resources). Assist with monitoring and managing DOC Leased ISR residences. Give examples: Individual case consultation – release/discharge planning, transition planning Landlord outreach/vendor outreach (vendor registration with MMB for a swift vendor number in order to receive payments for rental assistance) Manage RAHO Navigating and connecting clients to resources (RESEARCH – FILE REVIEWS … getting providers what they need in order to determine eligibility) Educating corrections professionals on how to access resources Assisting/Supporting agents in connecting with their community providers – supporting local DOC with connecting to local homeless issues discussions Providing education on correctional supervision … what does it include, addressing fears, etc. Resource development – local and state level…mention state strategic plan to End and Prevent Homelessness – MICH & Cathy Tenbroeke

9 MN DOC Housing Services
2012 – Rental Assistance for Homeless Offender Program 3-6 mo. of rental assistance for clients on DOC adult felony level supervision who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Available to individuals on probation and supervised release caseloads. Level III predatory offenders are the only clients eligible for six months of rental assistance Purpose – to “bridge the gap” to employment, other community based services (THP, Bridges, adult foster care, GRH etc.), or income supports (i.e. SSI/SSDI) Spent approximately $225,000 so far on approximately 160 clients – average … $1,400/person Can be used following use of other DOC Housing programs in order to create longer periods of housing stability Collecting data on income, employment, supports and interventions received during rental assistance period (treatment, job skills training, mental health etc.) – outcomes have not yet been analyzed … Outcomes thus far: increased the number of landlords/property owners who will rent to our clients, increase in placements of level III predatory offenders (stay incarcerated if no residence is approved – less costly alternative), brought focus to homelessness within MN DOC… and others…

10 MHFA Housing Trust Fund: Re-Entry Rental Assistance Initiative
“…designed to help persons who are formerly incarcerated to re-integrate into communities through rental assistance funding.” Two year grant “…Fund temporary rental assistance, security deposits and housing related expenses for individuals being released from a MN correctional facility.”

11 MHFA Housing Trust Fund: Re-Entry Rental Assistance Initiative
Eligible applications – current RA administrators under MN Housing Trust Fund “Grants are anticipated to be awarded throughout the state.” Deadline for applications – 4:30pm on November 25 Applicants are encouraged to partner with other organizations to apply for and implement program

12 Components of Correctional Supervision
Automated & Validated Risk Tools Cognitive/Behavioral Programming Case Plans Restorative Justice Primary Services Supervision Workload Standards Transition/Aftercare Services Outcomes Measures What components of correctional supervision might service providers be interested in to better serve clients and/or make our jobs easier? Try to educate agents on the helpful information that is included in a client’s file that can help connect/coordinate homeless and basic needs services … education happens one case at a time – an during smaller training efforts … “How does one eat an elephant? One bite at a time” Automated & validated risk tools – specific to working with the correctional population or those with criminal behavioral issues – focused on reducing criminal recidivism. Identify criminogenic needs and risks …these are elevated when an individual is homeless, and the resulting information would be helpful in informing connection to homeless services. Cognitive Behavioral Programming – Thinking for Change …focusing on the criminal thinking patterns and distortions. Teaches individuals to identify these though components, and factor in alternatives …slows it down. Re-examine values and understand consequences to holding certain beliefs. Provides skills to handle conflicts. Case Plans – Plans are formulated around the individuals criminogenic needs and risks …targeted and focused. Restorative Justice – What is needed to repair harm, who is responsible to repair harm. (3 stakeholders – community, victim, offender). I.e. CIP carries a specific restorative justice component. Client has to “make things right”. Primary Services – core to the efficient and effective operation of the justice system. Sex Offender Tx., CD Tx., mental health programming, DV programming, etc. Supervision Workload Standards – caseloads at a level where research proven practices can be effective. I.e. ISR caseloads are smaller … individuals with more needs need more time with their agent etc. Transition/aftercare services – Identification and utilization of “step-down” services when appropriate. More structure for those that need. Targeted activity. Outcome Measures – gather, report, analyze data. Measure everything. **DOC recently began gathering data on homelessness, outcomes of DOC targeted services. Foresee growth in this area into the future …excited about the possibilities.** Evidence based practices for correctional supervision … MN is at the forefront! For example, CD Tx. offered during incarceration – MN DOC has excellent programs; however, an individual’s success may be thwarted if they experience homelessness following completion of Tx. or are at risk of homelessness during this delicate time.

13 Structure of Supervision
Standard Conditions of Release The offender must go directly and report to the agent/designee by telephone or by personal visit within 24 hours of release …if offender fails to report, a fugitive warrant will be issued…” The offender must reside at the approved residence and may not change residence until approved by the agent/designee. The offender will keep the agent/designee informed of his/her daily activities. Daily activities must be constructive and include those designed to obtain/maintain employment and/or attend treatment or education program as directed. Structure of supervision informs the client of their responsibilities, and helps to inform the client’s case plan. Conditions of probation and conditions of release are added responsibilities. If the client chooses to not abide or adhere to these expectations or rules – a correctional sanction could follow. (Meaning – additional responsibilities or conditions, accountability incarceration time, commitment to the MN DOC i.e. executing a prison sentence; or for those that are on supervised release – revocation of release and serving more of his/her sentence inside a MN correctional facility.) Standard Conditions of release – mandated by statute for those released from a MN correctional facility and on supervised release. Special Conditions – added prior to the individuals release, more tailored to the individuals criminal offending behavior.

14 Standard Conditions of Release
The offender will submit reports as required by the agent/designee and will respond promptly to any communication regarding release. The offender will maintain contact with the agent/designee. The offender will at all times follow the instructions of the agent/designee. The offender must sign release(s) of confidential information for medical/mental health treatment, or any other required programming as directed.

15 Standard Conditions of Release
“The offender will refrain from the use or possession of intoxicants and will not possess …mood altering substances …” “…must not purchase or otherwise obtain …any dangerous firearm or weapon.” “Conviction of any petty misdemeanor, gross misdemeanor, or felony…involvement in any activity defined as criminal…signed criminal complaint …will all be considered grounds to hold the offender in custody…”

16 Standard Conditions of Release
“…Must inform agent…court appearance within 24 hours. “…not leave the state of MN without permission…” “…not engage in any abusive, assaultive, violent behavior…” “…not have direct or indirect contact of victims of current or previous offenses…” “…pay restitution…” “…Submit to unannounced visits…”

17 Special Conditions of Release
Must complete a chemical use assessment and follow recommendations. Must complete sex offender programming and follow recommendations Must not have contact with any organized groups or clubs identified as security threat groups or gangs. Must not borrow money … No contact with minors … Must not operate a motor vehicle … Examples of Special Conditions … Conditions of release and responsibilities and expectations of supervision can often times be used as a positive component to advocating for housing with a provider or landlord.

18 Benefits of Supervision for Obtaining Housing Options
Agents can serve as an unofficial “property manager” Landlords can connect with agents to assist with mediating issues Lease addendums that include conditions of supervision Utilize DOC targeted resources to help obtain and start client in their rental residence If you know of any landlords, please contact me as I can visit with them about the process for being paid rental assistance.

19 What are others doing? Public Housing and Prisoner Re-entry
Larger metropolitan areas Burlington (Vermont) Housing Authority – set-aside Section 8 housing vouchers. of Shelter Plus Care resources to eligible individuals who are incarcerated (Portland, Oregon). Case management partnership between the housing authority and service provides targeted towards individuals exiting incarceration to homelessness (Salt Lake County, Utah).

20 What are others doing? Boston Reentry Initiative
Inter-agency program that targets male offenders who are reentering local Boston communities and are at a high risk of recidivism.. Collaboration between several local, state, and federal agencies and non-profits. Provides individuals with access to transition and reintegration services – job training, housing assistance, and health services. Funded through Second Chance Act and the Serious and Violent Offender Reentry Initiative.

21 What are others doing? Christian Restoration Services, Inc., Minneapolis MN Permanent Supportive Housing for Ex-offenders Targeted towards homeless ex-offenders with disabilities. Faith based Partnerships between churches, faith-based organizations, community agencies, and criminal justice system. Emphasis on accessing community resources, employment, mentoring

22 What are others doing? FUSE (Frequent Users System Engagement)
Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH) Returning Home Initiative Break the cycle of incarceration and homelessness among individuals with complex behavioral health challenges who are the highest users of jail, homeless shelters and other crisis service use Three pillars Data-Driven Problem-Solving Policy and Systems Reform Targeted Housing and Services Data driven – identify individuals who are the high cost/high need users, who are shared clients of multiple systems (jails, homeless shelters, crisis health services) Targeted Housing Services – Supportive Housing Example … Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction partnered with CSH for Supportive Housing to design a reentry supportive housing pilot, Returning Home

23 Education Materials
Emily Baxter, works with the Council on Crime and Justice 1 in 4 Minnesotans has a criminal record – what would your life be like if you were convicted of an offense Federal Interagency Reentry Council Reentry Myth buster Pass around myth busters

24 MN DOC Reentry Programming
Adult Pre-Release Handbook More details of reentry programming and activities, and contact information for staff who work directly with the MN DOC Reentry Unit.

25 Kate Erickson MN DOC Field Services Housing Coordinator (320) – cell

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