On September 7, Michigan announced it will stop requiring applicants for most occupational and construction code licenses to check a box on the application form disclosing whether they have ever been convicted of a felony. Governor Rick Snyder (R) announced the policy change by the state’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA). Snyder also…

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By Christopher Zoukis A hand up — not a handout. That’s the philosophy behind Leon EL-Alamin’s M.A.D.E. Institute. Launched in 2015, the nonprofit organization provides an alternative to prison, with several programs aimed at providing disenfranchised people with the skills they need to help them succeed. M.A.D.E. stands for money, attitude, direction and education –…

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  America likes to play with its food. Chopped, Food Network Star, Cutthroat Kitchen – there is no shortage of entertainment on television when it comes to mixing ingredients and drama together. For the inmates of Folsom Women’s Facility, however, food has an entirely different meaning. It’s not about fun, drama or competition. It’s about…

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When the Mississippi Department of Corrections (MDOC) relied on a pre-release program that was steeped in military-style practices, it failed inmates miserably. “(We found that) people who go through (that program) actually do worse than people that didn’t go through, so we realized that while there were a lot of individuals who had success—they were…

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  Both while a candidate and after taking office, President Donald Trump has frequently boasted he’ll get tough on criminals and ensure the justice system promotes public safety. On Sept. 13, he was out of Washington, inspecting hurricane damage in Florida. But back at the White House, Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law and close advisor, convened…

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  The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) is hoping to find as-yet unrecognized patterns of adaptation and recidivism — which the agency terms “inmate reintegration into the community — by asking software developers to provide information about commercially available software capable of aggregating the various types of data the agency already collects. A request published…

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By Christopher Zoukis It’s easy to think only of the crimes committed when words like “offender,” “incarceration” or “prisoner” come up. But we should remember that many offenders in our system of incarceration will be released each year, hoping to become functioning and productive members of society. With support and rehabilitation, these individuals can become…

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By Christopher Zoukis The Prison Entrepreneurship Project has helped transform more than 1,300 convicted felons into business graduates that have transitioned successfully back into society. The project focuses on male prisoners, and is a comprehensive, holistic program aimed at reducing recidivism, giving second chances to ex-offenders, and helping to ensure successful reintegration into their communities.…

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