Holder Creates Re-Entry Unit, Says Prisons, Jails Are Failing


Attorney General Eric Holder is calling for a “new approach” to dealing with criminals, telling the Project Safe Neighborhoods annual conference in New Orleans that “at a cost of $60 billion a year, our prisons and jails do little to prepare prisoners to get jobs and ‘go straight’ after they're released.” Holder said, “People who have been incarcerated are often barred from housing, shunned by potential employers and surrounded by others in similar circumstances. This is a recipe for high recidivism. And it's the reason that two-thirds of those released are rearrested within three years.”

Holder said he is “convening an interagency working group to focus exclusively on reentry issues – everything from housing and job training needs to policy recommendations – and to enhance coordination at the federal level.” The group parallels a Justice Department “Sentencing and Corrections Working Group” that is examining federal sentencing practices.

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