Former Inmate Graduates Re-Entry Program
You see people getting arrested and prison-bound on a regular basis on the news, but what happens to inmates after they are released?
And, more importantly, what’s being done to make sure former inmates don’t return to a life of crime?
Sixty-five percent of Alaska's former inmates will return back to jail, and Jayson Buzby doesn’t want to be one of them.
He's made a lot of bad choices, including a crime he committed that put him behind bars for four years. “I used a credit card that didn't belong to me,” said Buzby.
“I was like, okay. I’m here, I’m not dead—there must be something more planned for me.”
While in jail, Buzby changed with the help of the Alaska Native Justice Center's Re-Entry Program.
Joined by 15 other men and women, program participants learned how to transition back into their communities.
“It’s very important that we talk with them and they understand their own accountability for what their situation is,” said program manager Marti Greeson.
Buzby said the program and the people in it helped him with his “inability to cope and deal with life” and won’t make excuses for the person he was or things he did.
“I just take responsibility for it and most of the people have been willing to give me a chance,” he said.
Buzby and others graduated from the re-entry program earlier this week.
In order to prevent recidivism, workers with the re-entry program said the key is helping former inmates find jobs and housing.