July 8, 2015
WASHINGTON—Congress should address challenges faced by the more than 650,000 men, women and juveniles who reenter society each year from prisons, jails and detention centers. This was the message of the chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development and the president of Catholic Charities USA in a July 8 letter supporting the Second Chance Act (S. 1513).
“Those who return to our communities from incarceration face significant challenges. These include finding housing and stable employment, high rates of substance abuse, physical and mental health challenges and social isolation,” wrote Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami and Dominican Sister Donna Markham in a July 8 letter to the chair and ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Archbishop Wenski and Sister Markham wrote that, without necessary support services, these individuals have an increased chance of re-offending.
“The Second Chance Act supports much needed programs in government agencies and nonprofit organizations that provide employment assistance, substance abuse treatment, housing, family programming, mentoring, victim support and other services to individuals returning to the community from prison or jail,” they wrote.
The full text of the letter is available online: http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/criminal-justice-restorative-justice/letter-to-senate-judiciary-committee-on-second-chance-act-2015-07-08.cfm
Keywords: Second Chance Act (S. 1690/H.R. 3465), Archbishop Thomas Wenski, Miami, Sister Donna Markham, Catholic Charities USA, USCCB, U.S. bishops, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, recidivism, reentry, prison, mentor, Senate, Judiciary Committee, Patrick Leahy, Charles Grassley
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MEDIA CONTACTDon Clemmer