Reintegration & Recovery
Since the 1990’s, the Criminal Justice System has faced many difficult situations: Citizens are demanding longer sentences and a harder stance on crime, while challenging the costs of incarceration, public safety and quality of life in our communities. This leaves us in a precarious situation; the courts, both locally and nationally, are forced to try to balance the excessive costs of incarceration with the safety of the community. Longer sentences, recidivism and higher demands placed on our judicial system have kept facilities overcrowded and pondering the question, “How do we fix this?” It is with this dilemma, that the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office has fuelled two pioneering, prolific programs to reduce our jail population, criminal recidivism and prepare offenders to reintegrate into the community as a productive member of our society.
The El Paso County Sheriff’s Office has an obligation to the community to maintain its standards regarding eligibility of inmates participating in our programs. Our participants are carefully screened with a strict admissions criterion, which assures the community at large and work site partnerships that violent and/or dangerous inmates will not be allowed to work in the community. This stringent scrutiny insures the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office commitment to community safety. With that said, the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office has two unique programs that offer education and therapy (Reintegration & Recovery), life skills and sober work experiences (Gateways Through the Rockies) for rehabilitating and returning the El Paso County sentenced inmates into our community.
Programs like Reintegration & Recovery and Gateways Through the Rockies are parts of a new wave of jail initiatives founded on well-substantiated principles of effectiveness in reducing offender re-offense rates.
PROGRAM MINIMUM ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS
- May meet the same criteria as inmates admitted to “Trusty” status or if the inmate is a work release violator that is ineligible only due to the arrears in work release fees. (Total arrears must be paid from any payment received).
- Have never been found guilty of a Class I Disciplinary Offense in the last three years (approval from the Detention Operations Division Commander also required).
- Not eligible for 60 days from the date of a Class II Disciplinary Conviction.
- Not eligible for 30 days from date of Class III or IV Disciplinary Conviction.
- No conviction(s) or pending felony or misdemeanor escape from confinement.
- No active pre-trial felony case(s).
- No active misdemeanor case (have not posted bond).
- No history of arrest or conviction on a sex offense.
- No conviction history of offenses against persons more violent than third degree assault, within past 10 years.
- No conviction history on a felony 1, 2, or 3, within past 10 years.
- No weapons conviction, within past 10 years.
- No Immigration holds.
- At least 30 days remaining on an El Paso County jail sentence.
- In accordance with Colorado Revised Statute 42-4-1307: “If the inmate is sentenced to a DUI, DUI Per Se and/or Habitual User charge with an offense date after 07/01/2012, the sentence will be reviewed for notes from the court stating which numbered alcohol offense the inmate is sentenced. These notes will help determine if there is a ‘no wait’ for trusty status, 10-day, or 60-day mandatory incarceration period. Credit time served does count towards the mandatory incarceration period.”
Reintegration and Recovery:
In August of 2007, the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office Detention Bureau established the Reintegration and Recovery Program for sentenced inmates serving from three to 24 months at the El Paso County Criminal Justice Center (CJC). The goal is to reduce post-release recidivism for new and Contempt of Court charges. This multi-disciplinary approach encompasses five components. First, education and therapy conducted by Certified Addiction Counselors to include intensive education and counseling that focuses on reintegration and recovery. Second, we obtained state licensure as a Weekly Outpatient Treatment Provider in Colorado (License #1701-03). Third, the education and therapy services received by the clients are accepted credited hours by any State or legal mandating agency. These agencies include the State of Colorado Department of Motor Vehicles, the State of Colorado Domestic Violence Offender Management Board, the Department of Human Services, the Colorado Division of Adult Parole, and the 4th Judicial District Probation Department. Fourth, have sworn deputies assigned to the R&R housing unit become instructors and mentors in the Thinking for a Change curricula. Fifth, provide case management specific to the offender’s identified issue(s) resulting in criminality behaviors to include:
Identifying and attempting to resolve any resistance to change the illegal and/or problematic attitudes and behaviors that ultimately result in a return to custody.
Provide the inmate participants with a network of social services agencies and community-based organizations that can provide these and any other needed services post-release for example medical/dental health treatment.
Assist the inmate participants in acquiring the life skills needed to succeed in the community as law-abiding citizens such as family reunification, housing, employment and vocational training, as well as “work” which will require the offender to maintain a schedule and commitment to a work ethic.
Case Management will be specific to the offender’s identified issues resulting in criminality to include: (1) identifying and attempting to resolve any resistance to change the illegal and/or problematic attitudes and behaviors that ultimately resulted in a return to custody. (2) Provide the participant with a network of social services agencies and community-based organizations that can provide these and any other needed services post-release. (3) Assist the participant in acquiring the life skills needed to succeed in the community as a law-abiding citizen. (4) Work experience and perform Useful Public Service for the community in order to facilitate the transition from incarceration to productive citizenship.
During the R&R Program, the adult participants attend didactic psycho-educational classroom offerings. The classroom curriculum includes a cognitive-behavioral approach to domestic abuse, anger management, substance abuse recovery and relapse prevention, parenting and relationship skills, job-seeking and employment skills, as well as post-release short-term and long-term life goals.
The R&R treatment utilizes the five critical components of effective treatment, as indicated by the National Institute of Drug Abuse and Domestic violence: (1) assessment, (2) patient-treatment matching, (3) comprehensive services, (4) relapse prevention, and (5) accountability.
Levels Of Treatment Offered:
- Psycho-educational/media instruction: covers a vast area of identified problematic inmate behavior. The instructional curriculum includes the following: anger management; drugs, alcohol and addictive behaviors; substance (alcohol and/or elicit drug) use and/or abuse awareness.
Weekly Outpatient Treatment
- Alcohol or Drug (AOD) Education and Therapy (Driving with Care Education and/or Therapy).
- Criminal Conduct and Substance Abuse Treatment: Strategies for Self-Improvement and Change.
- Domestic Violence Offender Treatment: curriculum provided by the designated Colorado State approved DV Provider.
- Individual Client Sessions: one-on one therapy specific to clients.
- Thinking for a Change: instructional segment, which integrates cognitive restructuring of social skills, practices conflict management, identifies alternative decision-making options; and encourages the development of problem solving techniques.
General Elective Classes (must complete 8 credit hours during incarceration)
- Basic Math
- Independent Reading
- Covey’s Seven Habits of Effective People
- Resume Writing
- Dave Ramsey –Wealth Building
- Business Plans
- Learning Spanish (tutorial)
- Personal/Professional Development
- Basic Computer classes
- Love and Logic
- GED study classes