The Nevada Department of Public Safety recently launched a new program that it hopes will prevent recidivism among inmates who receive parole.
The Parole and Probation division partnered with Sentinel Offender Monitoring Services to open the new Day Reporting Center in Las Vegas. The facility opened on October 31.
The center is for parolees who have violated their parole in a minor way like not getting a job or testing positive for drug use. While that person doesn't necessarily need to go back behind bars, they do need help staying out of prison.
“We wanted to come up with something so that we could help these people in lieu of incarceration,” Major Ann Carpenter with the parole and probation division told KNPR's State of Nevada.
At the center, parolees will get help with some of the obstacles to staying on track with requirements of their parole. Services include counseling, education, and job training.
“Simply put the objective is to take individuals that normally are released onto probation and parole with very little guidance, very little skill sets, possibly without a high school diploma, possibly with nowhere to go or nowhere to live, possibly with no family or home to welcome and to try to give them a skill set," said Leo Carson with Sentinel Offender Monitor Services.
The center offers help getting a high school diploma, improving social skills, and tackling substance abuse issues.
“What we’re finding is when they can be armed with those coming out of parole or probation it dramatically reduces the potential for them to re-offend, which in turn reduces the recidivism," Carson said.
Carpenter said that studies show when someone on parole or probation has a stable home life and a good job they are much less likely to end up back behind bars.
However, if they're missing either one of those or both "there are only problems," she said.
“These people are receptive to change if we change the way we look at them and the way we do business,” she said.
Major Anne Carpenter, Nevada Department of Public Safety - Parole and Probation Division; Leo Carson, Vice President of Strategic Sales, Sentinel Offender Monitoring Services