Housing problems, including homelessness, are common among individuals leaving the corrections system. They tend to have limited or low incomes, and, often due to their criminal history, lack the ability to obtain housing. As a result, one in five people who leave prison becomes homeless soon thereafter.

One effective model for addressing this problem is “re-entry housing,” which is subsidized housing with associated intensive support services directed especially toward people with disabilities. According to a cost analysis by the Corporation for Supportive Housing, a single re-entry housing unit in New York used by two people over one year can save $20,000 to $24,000 relative to the cost of release to shelter and re-incarceration.

The Connecticut Reenty Roundtable Collaborative is collection of local roundtables which recognize the need for more intensive efforts to increase successful reintegration of formerly incarcerated individuals into their communities upon release. Roundtables are located in Bridgeport, New Haven, Hartford, Windham, Waterbury and New London — towns which represent more than 46% of the current prison population. In each, membership includes employers, academics, policy leaders, community leaders, impacted individuals, service providers, law enforcement representatives, parole, probation, and others

Since their inception, CT’s Reentry Roundtables have identified common needs and gaps in services. All have taken steps to enhance individual and community outcomes by improving the “pipeline” between prison and community. For more information, contact Andrew Clark, at the Institute for Municipal and Regional Policy at Central Connecticut State University.

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