Hartford opens reentry center for formerly incarcerated people

September 21, 2018 by  

One of the many difficulties people face when they return from prison is that they do not know where to turn to restart their lives. Hartford recently opened a center to help them.

The reentry center is located in City Hall, in a suite of rooms that has been unused for several years. It will be staffed by a program coordinator and three case workers, who will help ex-offenders access the resources they need. These include immediate needs such as shelter and food, as well as long-term concerns such as permanent housing, and job training. Operators of centers like this could work with a poster printing company on directional signs, so people can easily find the location.

The staff will assess each person who comes to the center, and then refer them to the services that will benefit them. In addition, there are snacks and coffee available, and backpacks filled with items such as towels, shampoo, soap, and toothpaste.

The program’s organizers say they want to specifically work with people who are about to be released, but do not have either a probation or parole officer to help them once they return to society. Without these resources, and without friends and family, those trying to reenter society often struggle. To make sure the people who need help have immediate, direct access to the center, Connecticut’s Department of Corrections has established a drop-off spot close to the city hall.