The Department of Corrections is providing re-entry transition services to offenders through partnerships with local jails. Selected offenders are relocated from prison to a local jail in their community to receive transitioning services such as life skills workshops and assistance with housing and employment. These services will strengthen public safety by better preparing the offenders for their return to the community.
Phase 1: Programming
Offenders participate in daily workshops for a period of six – eight weeks. These sessions include classes such as Life Skills, Cognitive Thinking, Employability, Conflict Resolution, Substance Abuse, and Anger Management. The majority of the programming for these workshops will be conducted by the Department of Corrections staff. Additionally, outside resources such as the local Virginia Employment Commission, Social Services, Community Service Boards, Pre-Release and Post Incarceration Services providers, Mental Health and other community agencies will come into the jail to provide resource information and assistance. Assistance with housing and employment is also offered during this time.
Phase 2: Work Release
Offenders identified by the DOC Classification Unit, as being suitable for work release, will be eligible to participate in a work release program following the successful completion of the phase one programming.
Phase 3: Community Release
Offenders will be released from the local jail after having served their sentence and will began their transition back into the community. These offenders will have had the benefit of connecting with the necessary resources within the community as well as having completed intensive workshops, thus, making their reintegration into society smoother. Offenders will be provided support and assistance during this phase.
Offenders completing the re-entry program will leave the correctional system with career/life goals and job search training skills, which will assist them in making a successful return to their communities. Additionally, the program will help motivate offenders to make appropriate choices and to develop a sense of responsibility for their behavior.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is this a voluntary program?
No. The Department will select persons that will participate in the program. Gradually, the program will be expanded to accommodate as many offenders as possible.
Is smoking allowed?
The smoking policy of the jail will prevail.
What happens if offenders violate the program?
They will be brought back into DOC and face possible loss of good time.
Will furloughs be granted?
Requests for furloughs will be governed by the participating jail's furlough policy if one exists.
Is this an early release program?
No, offenders participating in this program will be released on their scheduled release date.
How will I know if I am eligible for the program?
Offenders with a release home plan to an area where the program is implemented will be screened for possible placement into the program.
How will I know if I am eligible for the work release phase?
Prior and/or current offenses must be non-violent. Inmates serving time for or who have an offense history involving any of the following felony offenses will not be considered for work release:
- Sex Related Crimes
- Felonious Assault
- Unlawful wounding
- Malicious wounding