ROD Ministries was proud to host Senator John Cornyn and his team on Monday, April 6, 2015 along with other key individuals interested in corrections reform in Texas. The panel included Senator Cornyn, Dr. Jeffery Parker, 4 ROD graduates, Professor Byron Johnson from Baylor Univeristy, a representative from Texas Department of Criminal Justice, and a representative from Right on Crime. The purpose of the event designed and organized by Cornyn’s team was to draw attention to the great work ROD Ministries is doing in the area of recidivism reduction through its prison ministry and reentry programs. Their goal was to promote the benefits of the approach that ROD takes, which yields fruit for both society and the incarcerated. ROD is please to promote Sen. Cornyn’s Corrections Reform legislation, which encourages on the federal level, the kind of recidivism reduction activities that ROD is doing.
The following information was provided from Senator Cornyn as it povides a few more details on what he is trying to accomplish in terms of corrections reform.
With the federal prison population expanding rapidly and recidivism rates continuing to be a significant problem, U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX), along with Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), introduced in the Corrections Oversight, Recidivism Reduction, and Eliminating Costs for Taxpayers in Our National System (CORRECTIONS) Act last month. This bipartisan bill does several things but a few key points are:
- Expand Recidivism-Reduction Programming: The bill requires the Bureau of Prisons to provide evidence-based recidivism reduction programming to virtually all federal inmates, which can include substance abuse treatment, vocational training, educational programs, cognitive behavioral treatment, and prison employment.
- Partnerships with Faith-Based and Community-Based Organizations: In order to promote efficient and effective recidivism reduction programming, the Bureau of Prisons must enter into partnerships with non-profit and private organizations to enhance existing efforts and deliver a broad spectrum of programming to prisoners.
- Improving Prisoner Reentry: The bill requires the federal probation office to begin planning for an inmate’s reentry at the beginning of the inmate’s sentence, and it requires the Justice Department to implement reentry pilot projects across the country. The bill also requires DOJ to study the impact of prisoner reentry on communities that support large numbers of ex-offenders and creates a new pilot program for ex-offenders in supervised release, based on Hawaii’s successful HOPE program.