Last updated on April 18, 2014 at 5:21 EDT

Reentry Partnerships and Innovative Resources Highlighted at the Second Chances and Safer Communities Conference

May 22, 2012

Three Day Conference begins Tuesday, May 22

WASHINGTON, May 22, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Attorney General Eric Holder today opened the first of the three-day Second Chances and Safer Communities Conference meeting, held at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel to engage experts, researchers, federal officials and grantees on the topic of reentry programs, policies, technical assistance and best practices.

“The Department of Justice’s commitment to being not just smart, but also tough, on crime extends to our reentry efforts and that is reflected in our work with state, local, tribal, and international partners in developing comprehensive, evidence-based strategies tailored to meet specific community needs,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. “We are determined to build on our record of achievement that we’ve established in recent years.”

Mary Lou Leary, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs (OJP) spoke about the work of OJP’s component bureaus and said, “It’s been remarkable to witness the way the issue of reentry has taken root in so many communities across the country. And it’s impressive to see how, thanks to visionary leaders in the Administration, in Congress, and in states and localities, the topic has become so prominent on the nation’s public safety agenda. Reentry is now a central part of the discussion on fighting crime and keeping communities safe.” Leadership representatives from OJP’s Bureau of Justice Assistance, the National Institute of Justice and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention are also in attendance.

The conference gives federal grantees the opportunity to learn evidence-based reentry practices from subject matter experts. The workshops, presentations and panel discussions provide attendees a critical opportunity to learn strategies that work and have an impact on recidivism.

The What Works in Reentry Clearinghouse, funded by BJA through the Second Chance Act and launched at the conference, provides online easy access to effective research on of a variety of reentry programs and practices,” said Denise O’Donnell, Director of the Bureau of Justice Assistance. “It provides a user-friendly, one-stop shop for practitioners seeking guidance on evidence-based reentry interventions, as well as a useful resource for researchers and others interested in the evidence supporting specific reentry interventions.” The What Works in Reentry Clearinghouse was developed for the National Reentry Resource Center (NRRC) by the Council of State Governments (CSG) Justice Center and the Urban Institute, in partnership with the John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s Prisoner Reentry Institute.

A panel on the Federal Interagency Reentry Council presents in the afternoon. The council represents 20 federal agencies working to make communities safer by reducing recidivism and victimization; assisting those who return from prison and jail in becoming productive citizens; and saving taxpayer dollars by lowering the direct and collateral costs of incarceration. Attorney General Holder chairs the council which he established in January 2011.

Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis will open the second day of the conference to provide updates on the Department of Labor’s reentry efforts related to employment. Following her remarks, concurrent sessions will examine issues such as improving employment outcomes and principles for effective juvenile reentry. Sessions examining technology career training and the reentry needs for special populations, such as Tribal, rural, and juveniles complete the afternoon. The final day will hold concurrent workshops on reentry courts, adult mentoring and current reentry research.

For more information about reentry and the Second Chance Act, visit http://www.nationalreentryresourcecenter.org/

For more information about the federal Reentry Council, visit http://www.nationalreentryresourcecenter.org/reentry-council

For more information about CrimeSolutions.gov, visit

The Office of Justice Programs (OJP), headed by Acting Assistant Attorney General Mary Lou Leary provides federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP has six bureaus and offices: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; the Office for Victims of Crime; and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART). More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.

SOURCE Department of Justice

Source: PR Newswire