Inmate Education is the Key to Reducing Recidivism Rates Nationwide and Worth the Investment

Inmate Education is the Key to Reducing Recidivism Rates Nationwide and Worth the Investment
By: Dr. Turner Nashe, Jr., Senior Vice President of Education Services at GTL

April 16, 2018

RESTON, Va., – (PR Newswire) Prison reform discussions include many topics, but one of the key components centers around lowering recidivism rates and the question of whether education and rehabilitation programs really have a positive impact on inmates. Studies have repeatedly shown that increasing education initiatives within prisons leads to lower recidivism rates, saving taxpayers millions of dollars. The RAND Corporation found that for every dollar spent on education, between four and five dollars are saved because of lower re-incarceration costs.

A National Institute of Justice study reported that more than 67% of released prisoners are rearrested within three years of their release. The cycle of arrest, incarceration, and release is very costly for the taxpayer. Fortunately, there are solutions for providing inmate education and reducing re-incarceration costs.

GTL is changing the face of corrections through education. Learn how innovative new technology can be utilized to save the taxpayers while simultaneously helping those who were incarcerated to gain life skills necessary to gain meaningful employment to reduce their chances of returning to jail.

GTL’s inmate tablet technology has stood out as a leading solution for increasing rehabilitation and security and reducing recidivism rates nationwide. Tablets provide educational tools to inmates in a more efficient, effective, and secure manner. GTL’s Inspire inmate tablets provide a learning management system, over 165 thousand pieces of educational content, educational videos, access to a law library, eBooks, and much more. When used in tandem with programs at the state and local level, tablets can make a real difference in inmates’ lives.

For example, Idaho state lawmakers passed the Justice Reinvestment Act in 2014, which invested money into rehabilitation programs for inmates instead of building new prisons. The Free2Succeed program was also implemented, pairing newly released parolees with community mentors who offered support and guidance. When the program began, the recidivism rate for prisoners was 35%. In 2017, the state found that the recidivism rate for inmates matched with a mentor was about 4%. This proves that education and rehabilitation programs work—and they work well.

Simply put, the cost of education and rehabilitation programs is far less than the cost of imprisoning inmates. While these initiatives mean investing in inmates, giving inmate the knowledge and tools to become motivated members of society in their lives outside of a correctional facility’s walls pays back several times over. It’s a situation that benefits everyone and an investment worth making.

Dr. Turner Nashe, Jr. is an entrepreneur, inventor, innovator, and recognized leader in building technology that facilitates delivery of educational and entertainment content to security sensitive industries such as correctional facilities, hospitals, and schools. His inventions have created innovative solutions for emerging eco-systems that are revolutionizing traditional approaches to the delivery of educational content within secure facilities. Dr. Nashe holds an Ed.D. in Administration and Supervision from Tennessee State University and a B.S. in Psychology from John Carroll University.

Press Contact:
Vinnie Mascarenhas
703-955-3894
[email protected]

April 16, 2018 / Blog

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Inmate Education is the Key to Reducing Recidivism Rates Nationwide and Worth the Investment

In the push to reduce the recidivism rate, correctional facilities are moving away from a traditional layout to one that is designed for inclusiveness and keeping inmates engaged with outside society. Studies have shown that maintaining a support structure is a key component to keeping inmates on the right path to successful reintegration into society after release. In Australia, a new maximum security prison opened this year that includes no cells. Instead, inmates are housed in dormitory-style accommodations with 25 inmates in 16 ‘pods’ that offer more access to education, entertainment, and communication with friends and families. This novel move seeks to enhance inmates’ daily lives by making these services more accessible and improve re-integration into society. Inmates have access to technology that connects them with friends and family members, news, books, movies, education, games, and more. They are required to work for up to five hours during the day and pursue education and other programs in the remaining time. This progressive approach aligns with GTL’s vision of technology and education being available to every inmate. “GTL has the technology portfolio to enable correctional facilities to execute their strategies,” said Gad Tobaly, President, GTL International. “Whether those strategies are similar to the open-plan jail approach or focus on a more traditional environment, we offer the innovations to help facilities become safer and more secure while providing inmates with access to programs that improve their lives during and after incarceration.” GTL creates new technologies and advocates for tablets, education, and other programs to help reduce recidivism rates. “These new facilities highlight the need for technology in corrections,” said Eric Gonzalez, Executive Director, Technology and Implementation Services. “Today’s inmates are digital natives, having grown up in the age of computers, cell phones, tablets, and more. It is only logical that providing them with technology and programs to learn and better themselves through those access points is the direction that corrections is taking.” As part of GTL’s ongoing mission to keep our offerings in line with global corrections trends, the company will once again be a sponsor at the International Corrections & Prisons Association (ICPA) Annual Conference. This year’s conference is being held at the Montreal Marriott Chateau Champlain in Montreal, Canada. The conference theme of “Beyond Prisons: The Way Forward” will draw discussion on the underpinning philosophies, strategic direction, policies, and practices being instituted across the globe. More than 500 delegates from over 70 countries attend this prestigious conference. GTL and two collaborating organizations will present on two topics that relate to the use of technology in aiding the corrections and criminal justice systems. “Transforming the Inmate Environment: How and Why Facilities are Implementing Tablet Programs” will discuss how technology is used to humanize correctional efforts and will take place on Tuesday, October 23rd at 11:00 a.m. in Maisonneuve A Room. “Virtual-Enabled Justice: Delivering Swifter Outcomes and Improved Victim and Witness Experience” will discuss the use of technology to create ‘virtual courts’ that fuel efficiency, safety, and security, and will take place on Tuesday, October 23rd at 3:30 p.m. in Maisonneuve A Room. To learn more about our technology solutions, contact GTL today.