In the News
Safe Streets & Second Chances is a program implemented by the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections last year. It’s a reentry initiative aimed at improving community stability by focusing on the formerly incarcerated person’s strengths and mental well-being, rather than the usual deficit-focused models. Advocates with the program say research shows this focus is the best way to make sure everyone is safe.
“We must particularly focus on second chances. Rehabilitation, redemption, and restoration, and that’s really important. It’s what makes communities and families better, safer, and stronger,” says Mark Holden, Advisory Council Chair for Safe Streets & Second Chances.
Fluent in Floridian: Dr. Carrie Pettus-Davis devoted most of her career to improving the lives of formerly incarcerated people. Her five key approach prepares them to be job-ready and job steady for when they complete their sentences. Tune in to hear her meaningful conversation with SalterMitchell PR President Heidi Otway as they discuss the impact of her research and how she preaches what she teaches.
Governor Reynolds assembled a diverse group of experts, including NAACP leadership and National Director of Safe Streets and Second Chances, John Koufos, in Des Moines, Iowa to make criminal justice reform recommendations for the first time this month. The group heard presentations about trends in Iowa’s prison population and barriers people face when they leave prison.
According to a new report from a team of independent researchers at Florida State University's Institute for Justice Research and Development, the best ways to help people leaving prison are to listen, offer a path to success, and recognize that many want to contribute to their communities. Those findings, along with many others, inform the work of Safe Streets & Second Chances, a first-of-its-kind reentry initiative launched in 2018 in Florida, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and Texas.
Research from the 5-Key Model was featured in a press conference Monday where Carrie Pettus-Davis and other members of the Safe Streets and Second Chances leadership team joined Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf to highlight data-driven solutions for criminal justice reform. The research supports common-sense policy reforms to increase supports and improve well-being for individuals leaving incarceration so that they can succeed in the community.
Carrie Pettus-Davis and leaders from Safe Streets and Second Chances joined Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, senators, and advocated to call for an end to punishing people for “minor probation violations,” such as missing appointments, and argue for “hard caps” on how long a probation sentence can last and efforts to find treatment for those who fail drug tests.
Wol noted that the PA DOC joined the safe Streets and Second Chances reentry initiative to reduce recidivism last year. The DOC has been working with Pettus-Davis and her research team to test an innovative reentry program called the 5-Key Model for Reentry.
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf was joined by Deputy Secretary of Corrections Christian Stephens and national criminal justice reform advocates today in the Capitol Rotunda to push for commonsense probation reforms that address probation sentences and probation lengths.
Last year, the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections announced its participation in a Safe Streets & Second Chances reentry initiative aimed at reducing recidivism, which aligns with the governor's criminal justice reform ideals. The DOC has been working with researcher Dr. Carrie Pettus-Davis from Florida State University to provide access to inmates from four state correctional institutions in Western Pennsylvania who were interested in participating in the pilot program.
Carrie Pettus-Davis, the executive director and founder of Florida State University’s Institute for Justice Research and Development, has received the 2019 Marguerite Q. Warren and Ted B. Palmer Differential Intervention Award, presented by the American Society of Criminology.
Pettus-Davis, who joined FSU as an associate professor in 2018, received the award during the society’s annual conference Nov. 14 in San Francisco. The award honors a scholar who has significantly advanced differential intervention science to promote improved social and personal adjustment and long-term change among incarcerated individuals.
Pettus-Davis is one of social work’s leading experts in criminal justice and the decarceration of American prisons and jails through policy reform and service innovations. She directs the Institute for Justice Research and Development — a premier multi-disciplinary research center located in the College of Social Work.
Carrie Pettus-Davis, Mark Holden, and other leaders from Safe Streets and Second Chances joined Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf at a press conference in Harrisburg to detail his plans to enact deep reforms to the Pennsylvania probation system. The Governor's goal is to change probation laws to allow those who have served time better opportunities to get back on their feet and get out of the legal system.
"We need to eliminate excessively lengthy probation sentences and create a system that allows all Pennsylvanians to succeed," Wolf said Monday.
Research from the 5-Key Model for Reentry trial currently being conducted in seven states including Pennsylvania was used to support the Governor's efforts.
Governor Tom Wolf is urging lawmakers to revamp Pennsylvania’s probation system so that people can get a fair chance at improving their lives. Wolf has been a staunch advocate for criminal justice reform and Monday’s news conference marked his most public push to change the probation system, helping people shorten their probation by succeeding in the community after release.
Carrie Pettus-Davis, Mark Holden, and other leaders from Safe Streets and Second Chances joined Governor Wolf at a news conference in the state Capitol Monday. “Punishment should fit the crime,” Wolf said Monday. “Punishment should not be endless." Research from the 5-Key Model for Reentry trial currently being implemented in seven states across the country including Pennsylvania has helped guide these reforms.