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Reentry Tools NY 

Tools for Jail Reentry Programs in Upstate New York

This website is a hub for jail-centered reentry programs in Upstate New York and provides tools for anyone interested in the field of reentry.

  
ReentryToolsNY presents:

  • Original research on several reentry programs in Upstate New York working with county jail populations ('Programs')

  • A step-by-step guide to building a new reentry program, based on that research ('Guidebook')

  • Explanations and analyses of  important research relating to criminal justice in the U.S ('Resources') 

  • Information about the author ('About Darby') and methodological information ('About ReentryToolsNY')

  

I see community-based reentry programs for jail populations as a foundation for future directions in criminal justice - in New York State and nationwide.
 

The programs I've researched are challenging long-standing views of the purpose of incarceration, punishment, the effect of our criminal justice system, and the ways communities respond to crime. County jails in New York State have an incredible potential to connect incarcerated people and the surrounding community in a way prisons cannot. Reentry programs that bring community resources into jails and support people leaving jails can transform community relations, stop harmful generational patterns, and change the institutional culture of criminal justice agencies. 

To support the development of reentry programs, I've developed this website to share information in a central, easy-to-read way. This is a totally free website designed to be accessible and helpful to all, regardless of your understanding of the criminal justice system. Please enjoy these articles, read the linked sources, take inspiration,
 or just appreciate the incredible work in Upstate!
 
Enjoy :)

PROGRAMS

descriptions of some reentry programs in Upstate, the paths they took to build them, and tips on building a similar program - based on my research

GUIDEBOOK

A step-by-step blueprint for creating a reentry coordination program based on my research of several programs in Upstate

RESOURCES

Tools to help anyone get into the field of reentry or expand your existing knowledge. Includes basic explanations of NYS criminal justice, important and timely research, and example forms.

COMMUNITY +FORUM

Under the Community tab, ReentryToolsNY hosts a page for the budding coalition of reentry and other service providers from the Capital Region!

(forum coming soon)

Here's What 
This
You'll Find In
Website...
Image by Kurt Wiegand

ABOUT ME - the creator of Reentry Tools NY

Hi! I'm Darby. I created this website as an Honors Thesis portfolio my senior year at UMass Amherst, inspired by my internship in the reentry program ABLE in Warren County Jail, NY. Through ABLE I connected with other reentry providers and worked to form coalitions for local justice-involved people. For my thesis, I wanted to create something that could really be helpful to frontline workers, something people wanted to use. I also wanted to connect reentry providers with important tools, and with each other. Thus, Reentry Tools NY was born. Now I'm taking it past a thesis project, and launching my career in the criminal justice system.

Image by Ivana Cajina

Programs - By County

Each article below gives a description of an existing program and details on the journey to build it. Read for ideas to build a similar program, for inspiration on expanding an existing program, or just to hear the amazing things happening!

Albany

New Beginnings Program

Albany County jail's Assistant Director of Programs Elena Kilcullen is the hub for reentry services in Albany, and built an integrated reentry system for the jail. Oh, she also helps with the Housing First homeless shelter attached to the jail.

Warren

ABLE Program

Local social worker Amanda Zeno runs a community-based reentry case management program in Warren County Jail, and also offers ABLE to anyone in the community with a history of incarceration or at-risk of incarceration.

Saratoga

Saratoga County Jail

Local CRPA Ben Deeb built and runs an interconnected system of programs at Saratoga County Jail from the perspective of a former inmate. Ben built his CRPA Initiative as part of the jail's infrastructure and brings the community in to run programs!

GUIDEBOOK - step-by-step guide to building a new reentry program

I've identified several patterns from my research in the process of creating a brand new reentry program for county jail populations. Here I've organized the patterns like a step-by-step guide, with definitions, instructions, and examples from my research for each one. These are steps that came up in several counties in my research on reentry programs, and are common questions to answer, problems to solve, and ideas to inspire you. Feel free to skip around, take what's relevant to you, and be inspired!

Resources

Here find everything from introductory explanations of criminal justice topics, summaries of research articles, to example assessments and consent forms from existing programs.

NYS Explained:

'NYS Explained' is a series of articles where I explain New York State criminal justice, with sources cited and further reading linked! Find a variety of topics, such as jail vs prison, under the 'NYS Explained' tag.

Research:

In the 'Research' category, find summaries I've written of both new and old research relevant to the field of reentry! This covers a wide range of topics for a wide range of programs!

Example Forms:

Under 'Example Forms' I've collected some helpful forms other counties/programs are using (with their permission). Feel free to draw inspiration, or adopt them yourself (with proper credit)! 

Multimedia:

Here I've labeled the "Multimedia" sources that could be helpful or relevant to reentry programs. This includes articles, books, podcasts, and documentaries (like 13th).

Image by Alex Shutin

ABOUT ReentryToolsNY

This page explains my purpose in building this website and provides the empirically validated methodology behind my research.

This includes:

  • Purpose of ReentryToolsNY: My goals in creating ReentryToolsNY

  • History of ReentryToolsNY: Brief overview of ReentryToolsNY as my Honors Thesis

  • Significance: A short literature review on the context of reentry in Upstate NY

  • Methodology: A detailed look at the methods of my interview research

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