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Article
Publication date: 13 September 2021

Uwafiokun Idemudia, Nnenna Okoli, Mary Goitom and Sylvia Bawa

Reintegration programs have emerged as part of the regimes of care for survivors of human trafficking. However, empirical analysis of the reintegration outcomes for…

Abstract

Purpose

Reintegration programs have emerged as part of the regimes of care for survivors of human trafficking. However, empirical analysis of the reintegration outcomes for survivors remains limited in the African context. Hence, this paper aims to examine the challenges and opportunities of reintegration assistance programs for survivors of human trafficking in Nigeria.

Design/methodology/approach

Drawing on qualitative methods of data collection and analysis, this study conducted semi-structured interviews with repatriated women who have accessed reintegration assistance in Nigeria, and data was analyzed using thematic analysis.

Findings

The findings suggest that while the reintegration programs might address the procedural aspect of reintegration, the achievement of substantive reintegration remains incomplete. This is because of the structural conditions of the context within which reintegration is supposed to occur.

Practical implications

There is a need to take seriously the distinction between the reintegration of survivors into a new community or a former community in the design of a regime of care for survivors of human trafficking in Africa. Crucially, the focus on procedural reintegration should not also divert attention away from the structural conditions and reforms needed to ensure survivors achieve substantive reintegration.

Originality/value

This paper contributes to the limited literature on life after trafficking and demonstrates the strengths and limitations of reintegration programs as a regime of care for survivors of human trafficking. In addition, this study empirically grounded the theoretical distinction between different aspects of the process of reintegration.

Details

International Journal of Migration, Health and Social Care, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-9894

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Article
Publication date: 11 July 2016

Joyce P.S. Chan and Douglas P. Boer

This paper is an extension of the previous study published by Chan and Boer (2016). It seeks to explore deeper into the subject matter, to better aid ex-offenders 

Abstract

Purpose

This paper is an extension of the previous study published by Chan and Boer (2016). It seeks to explore deeper into the subject matter, to better aid ex-offenders’ reintegration effort back into society. The purpose of this paper is to expand the sample size of participants from 12 to 25, and to further ascertain any emerging factors (also known as predictors) that influence the reintegration process of ex-offenders in the hope of further reducing recidivism rate.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted a qualitative research framework where attention was devoted to understanding the experiences of 25 formerly incarcerated males − 12 participants were from the initial study, and now extended with another 13 participants to deepen the scope of the study. All participants who took part in the study had been out of prison for at least five years and had been incarcerated in the prison of Singapore more than once but are no longer on parole.

Findings

This study indicated three other new factors that emerged with the additional 13 participants, along with those seven different factors from the previous study that influenced the success of reintegration. These Ten Reintegration Assessment Predictors are critical as they further increase the probability of success of ex offender reintegration to society upon release. The combination of these ten predictors reported are essential for the reintegration process, and when put together, they formed the reintegration model.

Research limitations/implications

A limitation to this research was that only two halfway houses took part in the process. Both of which are faith-based halfway houses. The previous study had 12 participants who took part in the research. Despite of attempts to enlarge the number of participants in the study, only an additional 13 new participants volunteered to take part.

Practical implications

From the themes that emerged from the previous study, critical factors for reintegration of offenders were ascertained. With the addition of three factors identified, it would further strengthen the factors needed to increase the success of reintegration of offenders. Resources could be channelled appropriately to strengthen the factors identified that are critical for the work of reintegrating offenders through their transition from incare to aftercare. Eventually, this is done to decrease the rate of recidivism and reoffending.

Social implications

Decreasing the rate of recidivism and reoffending is always in the interest of every government. However, it is often not an easy task since most incarcerated persons will encounter numerous challenges after their release as they seek to reintegrate into the community. Under tremendous stress and pressure when facing the challenges, the cycle of reoffending perpetuates which eventually affects the rate of recidivism. This would adversely impact both individuals and the community they are in.

Originality/value

In Singapore, various initiatives to introduce new programmes and alternative sentencing options were initiated by the government to lower the rate of recidivism. Following from the previous study of 12 individuals who had successfully reintegrated back into the community, seven factors were identified to influence reintegration. With the addition of 13 participants to the research, three other factors further emerged and the study now concluded with ten factors deemed critical to strengthen the reintegration of offenders. From the study, a reintegration model for offenders was formulated.

Details

Safer Communities, vol. 15 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-8043

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Article
Publication date: 14 November 2016

Emma Tarpey and Hannah Friend

The purpose of this paper is to explore offenders’ experiences of community reintegration facilitated by a supported housing scheme.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore offenders’ experiences of community reintegration facilitated by a supported housing scheme.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were derived from five semi-structured interviews with prolific offenders who were participating in a UK “north west housing association” scheme; a community reintegration programme for offenders released from prison.

Findings

Thematic analysis demonstrated four predominant themes, these were: “the decision to change”, “self-fulfilment”, “a place to call home” and “a suitable support system”. The themes are discussed in relation to the Good Lives Model.

Practical implications

Participation in the housing scheme was a key component of the reintegration process, which positively facilitated lifestyle change.

Originality/value

This research considers the often “unheard” perspectives of prolific offenders and highlights the significant role of community housing schemes in supporting successful community reintegration.

Details

Journal of Forensic Practice, vol. 18 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-8794

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Article
Publication date: 11 January 2016

Joyce P.S. Chan and Douglas P. Boer

This paper seeks to explore deeper into this subject in search of a new manner that can better aid ex-offenders to reintegrate back into society. The purpose of this paper…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper seeks to explore deeper into this subject in search of a new manner that can better aid ex-offenders to reintegrate back into society. The purpose of this paper is to ascertain the factors that influence the reintegration process of ex-offenders in the hope of further reducing reoffending and re-incarceration of offenders. This would eventually translate into a possible reduction in the resultant cost impact to the economy.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is primarily descriptive, it was hoped to find out the philosophical bases of what were was “effective” (e.g. in terms of helping ex-offenders find jobs, the support they received, etc.) in reducing recidivism. The study adopted a qualitative research framework where attention was devoted to understanding the experiences of 12 formerly incarcerated males, all whom have been out of prison for at least five years or longer. Those individuals participating in the study have been incarcerated in the prison of Singapore more than once and are no longer on parole.

Findings

The study indicated seven different factors that influence the success of reintegration. When these seven factors are put together, they increase the probability of success in their reintegration process. Hence, the success of re-entry of offenders after their release from prison is not merely dependent on one or two factors. Therefore, to maximise the rate of success for reintegration of offenders upon their release, a combination of the seven factors reported are essential for the reintegration process.

Research limitations/implications

A limitation to this research was that both the halfway houses involved in the research process are faith based. Thus, the faith element was emphasised in the interviewing process. Currently in Singapore, there are no halfway houses that operate on a non-faith-based basis. It would be interesting to be able to interview and understand the perspective of individuals who have benefited from a non-faith-based programme and are successful in their reintegration back into the community.

Practical implications

From the themes emerged from the study, critical factors for reintegration of offenders were identified. When resources are invested to strengthen the factors from the study while working with offenders through their transition from incare to aftercare, it would ultimately decrease the rate of recidivism and reoffending.

Social implications

Desiring to live a life without crime is often not an easy option for most incarcerated persons after their release as there are several challenges they often face when they are in the community. Some also found themselves unable to adapt to the mainstream culture when released. Problems they faced include difficulty in finding employment, the intricacy of reconnecting back with their families, finding accommodation, etc. Besides these challenges, they have to live with experiences when they were in prison, and for some, the time in prison resulted in them experiencing symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (Goff et al., 2007). These issues coupled with guilt and shame often resulted in them going back into crime and sometimes falling into abusing substance. When this happens, the cycle of crime and imprisonment perpetuates and the desire to reduce recidivism will not be achieved and both the individuals and the community they are in will be adversely impacted.

Originality/value

In Singapore, the Government has always been proactive in reducing recidivism. Various initiatives to introduce new programmes and alternative sentencing options started to assist in rehabilitation and reintegration of offenders. From the interviews of the 12 individuals who had successfully reintegrated back into the community, several themes emerged and factors that influenced reintegration are identified.

Details

Safer Communities, vol. 15 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-8043

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Article
Publication date: 19 September 2016

Anita Schrader-McMillan and Elsa Herrera

The purpose of this paper is to identify elements of success in the family reintegration of children with street connections who have experienced chronic violence and loss…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify elements of success in the family reintegration of children with street connections who have experienced chronic violence and loss in the context of poverty. This paper outlines the application of complex trauma theory into a practice model developed by the JUCONI Foundation in Puebla, Mexico to help children and families prepare and manage reintegration.

Design/methodology/approach

This is a 15-month qualitative study involving semi-structured interviews with families and boys at three stages: preparing for return, in the first three months of reintegration and successfully reintegrated. The study comprises interviews with frontline workers and focus group discussions with the project team. In addition, six youths who did not return to their families were interviewed.

Findings

The study focuses on an attachment and trauma-based approach to family reintegration of street-connected children outside parental care. The findings highlight the need for careful preparation of both child and families (including siblings/extended family) prior to reunification. Preparation needs to focus on resolving the underlying problems that have led to the child being on the street and “phased” reintegration (beginning with visits to the family) is recommended. Follow-up visits/family work by staff are usually essential to ensure that child/youth and family adjust to each other. The theoretical framework and rationale behind the use of the tools and strategies described needs to be understood, so that they are used intentionally and consistently.

Research limitations/implications

The study cohort involved only boys and other factors are likely to affect the reintegration of girls. The study took place in Mexico only and methods used by JUCONI need to be tested in other contexts.

Practical implications

The integration of children without parental care into families is an issue of critical interest, but there is currently very limited research or guidance on reintegration of children who have lived on the street, especially in low and middle income countries. The study should be of interest to practitioners interested in assessing whether safe and sustainable reintegration is possible and facilitating this. The paper may be of interest to practitioners working with children growing up without parental care who do not have “street connections”, but who have experienced chronic violence and loss.

Originality/value

This is the first study to describe the application of an attachment and trauma perspective to work with children who have lived on the street.

Details

Journal of Children's Services, vol. 11 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-6660

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Article
Publication date: 1 December 2020

Rachel Worthington and Sarah Rossetti

Public attitudes are considered influential in the successful reintegration of offenders into society after release, however research into attitudes towards offenders with…

Abstract

Purpose

Public attitudes are considered influential in the successful reintegration of offenders into society after release, however research into attitudes towards offenders with intellectual disability (ID) has received little attention. The purpose of this study is firstly to see if people hold differing attitudes towards the reintegration of offenders with ID compared to those without ID and secondly, to investigate whether this difference in attitude is because of differing implicit theories of intelligence (TOI). The effects of familiarity with ID were also measured.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 200 participants read crime vignettes depicting crimes committed by offenders with and without ID and completed Dweck’s “TOI” scale.

Findings

Participants were found to have greater entity views of intelligence towards ID yet displayed more positive attitudes towards their reintegration than offenders without ID. The influence of demographics was mixed. It would appear attitudes towards offenders with ID are not as negative as initially thought.

Research limitations/implications

Implications of these findings are discussed in terms of desistance and community integration.

Practical implications

While some care must be taken when interpreting the results, this study demonstrates positive results regarding the reintegration of offenders with ID. Attitudes may be changing for the better towards those with disabilities, which is positive in terms of the government and National Health Service (NHS) objectives to reintegrate people with ID successfully back into the community. Although limited in number, it is noted that community forensic mental health teams have been effective in managing offender risk and providing good quality care (Dinani,et al.,2010; Benton and Roy, 2008). They can provide more person-centred and specialist treatments options and have links with other community services, probation and the police (Royal College of Psychiatrists, 2014).

Social implications

Community care is thought to lead to more timely treatments with more accessible support teams and services that those with ID would struggle to access in prison (Bradley, 2009). It can also lead to greater well-being and support as individuals are in a less restrictive environment and are closer to their social networks, acting as a protective factor against further reoffending (Benton & Roy, 2008; Bradley, 2009). Furthermore, it has been indicated significant financial savings would be achieved for the criminal justice system by reducing inpatient care and increasing community services and sentences, in addition to reducing the demand on prison spaces (Bradley, 2009; Benton & Roy, 2008).

Originality/value

To date, very few studies have used TOI to examine attitudes towards offenders, with none examining attitudes towards offenders with ID.

Details

Journal of Criminological Research, Policy and Practice, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-3841

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2009

Laura R. Shantz and Sylvie Frigon

In this article, we examine the ways in which older women’s experiences of imprisonment, aging, and health impact their lives. Specifically, we focus on the community…

Abstract

In this article, we examine the ways in which older women’s experiences of imprisonment, aging, and health impact their lives. Specifically, we focus on the community reintegration experiences of older women who have served long prison sentences, exploring the lasting effects of imprisonment and aging on their physical and mental health. Two separate Canadian studies of reintegration, consisting of interviews with older reintegrating women, as well as the professionals who assist them in the community, are used to highlight older women’s reintegrations. While researchers have argued that older women should face fewer challenges during reintegration and are more likely to succeed in the community than other reintegrating populations, we find that they experience many difficulties and barriers linked to their age, health and gender.

Details

International Journal of Prisoner Health, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-9200

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Article
Publication date: 31 May 2019

Bjørn Kjetil Larsen, Sarah Hean and Atle Ødegård

Many offenders struggle when attempting to reintegrate into society after release from prison, and the conditions they face after release often lead to reoffending. The…

Abstract

Purpose

Many offenders struggle when attempting to reintegrate into society after release from prison, and the conditions they face after release often lead to reoffending. The purpose of this paper is to present a conceptual model on reintegration after prison. The model has the potential to guide practitioners in their understanding of the relationships between welfare services and the agency of the offender.

Design/methodology/approach

The model was developed from a small-scale study in the Norwegian Criminal Justice system, which is well known for its emphasis on rehabilitation and crime prevention. Data collection aimed to explore the reintegration process from the perspective of the hard-to-reach and vulnerable population of serial offenders. Nine prisoners in two different prisons were interviewed. A thematic analysis identified two main themes that related, first, to the personal challenges the offenders faced in the rehabilitation and reintegration process and, second, to the factors in the welfare services that interacted with the prisoners’ psychosocial issues in the reintegration process.

Findings

Findings suggest that the interaction between the psychosocial needs of the prisoners and the organization of the welfare services is complex and does not harmonize. The findings underpin the argument that the current reintegration strategies for certain groups of inmates need to be questioned and challenged.

Research limitations/implications

The model is a conceptual model intended to provide a lens from which to reinterpret offenders’ experiences of reintegration and applied to only the small and exploratory study described in this paper. As such, it requires further testing and substantiation, and the model and the study’s findings should be regarded as tentative and cannot be generalized to a larger population. The prisoners were selected by the first author for convenience, and it is possible that this also influenced the findings. Other inmates may have presented other experiences.

Originality/value

There are few studies looking into reintegration from the reoffenders’ perspective, and this study also presents a model that serves as a reflective and analytical tool to developing new approaches to supporting offenders in their reintegration into society from prison in the future.

Details

International Journal of Prisoner Health, vol. 15 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1744-9200

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Article
Publication date: 11 August 2021

Joyce P.S. Chan

This paper aims to focus on the perspectives of correctional officers supervising young offenders on community supervision in Singapore.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to focus on the perspectives of correctional officers supervising young offenders on community supervision in Singapore.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted a qualitative research framework, where attention was devoted to understanding the perspectives of eight reintegration officers, and what they perceived to have helped young offenders successfully discharged from community supervision.

Findings

The five essential factors that emerged are compliance to supervision conditions, education and/or employment, ability to cope and efforts to change, support and environment. Each factor is defensible and had been substantiated by past research that incorporates evidence-based practice in correctional rehabilitation for offenders.

Research limitations/implications

Due to constraints imposed on the research timeline, the five factors identified do not take into account societal-level barriers such as stigma, discrimination and inequalities, which are important factors that can be further explored in subsequent studies.

Originality/value

In Singapore, there is no research study on the Reintegration Officers' perspectives on what they deemed as critical for offenders to be discharged from community supervision. Understanding these key factors may help to shape future research in determining supervisees’ readiness for discharge from community supervision in Singapore. This knowledge gained could further inform and bolster the correctional rehabilitation services provided by SPS and be further developed into a tool that can be used to systematically assess the readiness of offenders to be discharged from community supervision.

Details

Safer Communities, vol. 20 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1757-8043

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Book part
Publication date: 12 September 2017

Merethe Skårås

This chapter explores how marginalized youth, specifically former child soldiers in South Sudan, struggle to access education that is crucial in their reintegration

Abstract

This chapter explores how marginalized youth, specifically former child soldiers in South Sudan, struggle to access education that is crucial in their reintegration process. The chapter draws upon data from a study focusing on the reintegration process of school boys formerly associated with armed forces and groups in South Sudan, and is based on ethnographic fieldwork including interviews and observations of 20 former child soldiers in Malakal, Upper Nile State. The study identifies a number of external factors that inhibit educational opportunities for the boys in their reintegration process. These are their life experiences, the impacts of war, their socioeconomic background and the lack of educational structures due to ongoing conflict. This study describes how the living conditions that motivated the boys to join the armed group are still present after their demobilization. Thus, they not only still find themselves in poverty but the time spent in the armed group and the impacts of war have put them in an even more marginalized position today than prior to their recruitment. The study argues that access to education is crucial in order to prevent recruitment and also re-recruitment to armed groups.

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