ACEs in the Criminal Justice System

Discussion and sharing of resources in working with clients involved in the criminal justice system and how screening for and treating ACEs will lead to successful re-entry of prisoners into the community and reduced recidivism for former offenders.

Activity

CRI is hiring an Associate Director!

Community Resilience Initiative is seeking an innovative and passionate individual to join our organization as an Associate Director (AD). The AD reports to the Executive Director and to the Board of Directors. Job Overview The role of the Associate Director is to sustain the resilience-based, trauma-responsive capacity building work at the local, regional, state and national stage for which CRI is recognized. Success in this position will be evidenced by recognition of its exceptional...

Momentum Grows In Congress To Expand Access To Quality Postsecondary Education For People In Prison [witnessla.com]

By Witness LA, July 8, 2019. Twenty-five years ago, the massive Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which, among other things, prevented incarcerated students hoping for a college degree from accessing Pell Grants, was signed into law by then-President Bill Clinton, and essentially resulted in the slashing of opportunities for higher education in federal and state prisons across the U.S., a move that, as Mikaol T. Nietzel, president emeritus of Missouri State University,...

Announcing CRI's Newest Trainings- July and September!

CRI is excited to announce new trainings! We will have online trainings in July, and an in-person training in September. July Online Trainings CRI Course 1 LIVE WEBCAST: Trauma-Informed Training A dynamic 2 part six-hour LIVE WEBCAST course, Course 1 introduces CRI’s capacity-building framework for building resilience, KISS. Knowledge, Insight, Strategies and Structure describes our community’s learning and movement from theory to practice and how to implement evidence-based strategies into...

Developing Super Powers: Using Resilience Strategies to Cope with Negative Experiences. Introducing CRI's Newest Book!

“I believe that everyone, especially a child, deserves to know how their brains are shaped by environment, to then understand their capacity for building proactive protective factors. We all deserve to be super heroes as we do the best we can to consciously live life well. ” - Teri Barila The superheroes we learn about in comics, movies, and TV shows swoop in to save the world with their incredible powers, to shield people from harm. But in our world, no matter how much we wish to protect...

Clark instructors help Larch inmates earn GEDs (columbian.com)

YACOLT — Posted on the walls in the Larch Corrections Center’s education building are photos of inmates, beaming in blue caps and gowns. These are men who have earned their General Educational Development certificates, or GEDs. These are the men who came first. In a nearby classroom, other men in beige and burgundy uniforms huddle over textbooks and worksheets. These are the men who hope to come next. Clark College’s GED program at Larch Corrections Center is a cornerstone of the educational...

Graduations, non-linear paths, & the importance of getting started

With graduation season upon us, I have been thinking a lot about one of my favorite graduation speeches. It’s the speech that Shonda Rhimes, creator of Grey’s Anatomy, gave in 2014 at Dartmouth College. She references the typical expected advice from a graduation speech: “Follow your dreams. Listen to your spirit. Change the world. Make your mark. Find your inner voice and make it sing. Embrace failure. Dream. Dream and dream big...." And then she says, “I think that’s crap.”

Why Focus on Resilience? 2019 BPT Conference Big Idea Session with Teri Barila

“There comes a point where we need to stop just pulling people out of the river. We need to go upstream and find out why they’re falling in” -Desmond Tutu. This quote captures the essence of why resilience matters. To Community Resilience Initiative, Resilience is not about “lifting yourself up by your bootstraps” or “bouncing back” from serious harm or injury. To us, Resilience is about self-discovery and self-awareness based on what the ACE Study, neurobiology, and epigenetics tell us...

Reducing Harm for People in the Corrections System [Trauma Informed Oregon]

When I entered Framingham State Prison for the first time at age 19, I was placed in a cold, dark holding cell with 9 other women. Most of us were in bad shape, experiencing withdrawal symptoms, bruised from domestic violence, and simply scared to death of what we would experience after entering our designated cellblocks. After almost an entire day of being crammed in that cell, I was finally moved and asked to remove my clothes in front of an intimidating, angry-looking woman and then to...

Integration of TIC in the Justice System [Trauma Informed Oregon]

I have avoided writing this blog because there is so much that needs to be addressed regarding the judicial system and trauma – the theme of this newsletter. But of course, it is this avoidance that I, we must resist because avoidance often perpetuates harm. To talk about the judicial system means we have to talk about racism, systemic oppression, power, economics, and trauma and that can feel overwhelming. Even what we call the system can lead to inaccurate assumptions and connections. For...

Consider alternative before building a bigger jail [Bangor Daily News]

Penobscot County is planning a new, bigger jail. The argument is that the currently overcrowded facility is a risky environment. While roughly 75 new beds are needed to reduce overcrowding, the group is planning to add twice that , just in case. Now seems like a good time to re-imagine prison. Since 2005, the Corrections Alternatives Advisory Committee of Maine has been discussing the need for reform in the state justice system, citing bail reform, providing resources toward reducing...

Healing and Justice Toolkit (Dignity and Power Now)

We have learned so much from our anchor organization Dignity And Power Now , a “Los Angeles based grassroots organization founded in 2012 that fights for the dignity and power of all incarcerated people, their families, and communities” and are so thrilled to have been able to collaborate on a Healing Justice Toolkit with DPN. The guide was written by DPN, edited by Thandisizwe Chimurenga, translated into Spanish by delia ayala, and designed by Design Action Collective . Here is an excerpt...

Teaching in America’s Prisons Has Taught Me to Believe in Second Chances [jjie.org]

In 2007, I gave someone a second chance. I was in Danbury (Conn.) Federal Correctional Institution recruiting women for a new program for people returning from prison that I was running in New York City. A woman approached me and handed me her portfolio. It was basically a detailed resume of her accomplishments, skills and goals for the future. Over a two-year period before this, I had visited at least six female facilities in New York and Connecticut and met hundreds of women looking to...

Virginia Suburb Shows That Diversion, Victim-centered Agreements Work [jjie.org]

Over the last several years, the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court (JDRDC) of Fairfax County, Va., has been working on transformative efforts around juvenile justice in an effort to keep low-risk youth from entering the system and address disparities for youth of color. One large area targeted by these efforts was the diversion programming and Juvenile Intake Office. In Virginia, intake officers are decision-makers. It is their responsibility to review charges from petitioners...

More than eight in 10 men in prison suffered childhood adversity – new report [phys.org]

Male prisoners are much more likely than men in the wider population to have suffered childhood adversities such as child maltreatment or living in a home with domestic violence, according to a new report by Public Health Wales and Bangor University. The findings suggests that preventative action and early intervention to tackle Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) could prevent crime and reduce costs for the criminal justice system . In this new survey of men in Her Majesty's (HM) Prison...

Criminal Diversion offers treatment instead of jail time in San Diego (sdnews.com)

As part of their ongoing effort to get low-level drug offenders off the streets and into treatment, City Attorney Mara W. Elliott and San Diego Police Chief Nisleit have teamed to launch Prosecution and Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion Services (PLEADS). PLEADS is a voluntary, pre-booking diversion pathway that allows individuals suspected of being under the influence of a controlled substance to avoid prosecution and jailtime by agreeing to seek support services. The Neighborhood Policing...

Overdoses in California prisons up 113% in three years — nearly 1,000 incidents in 2018 (sfchronicle.com)

Nearly 1,000 men and women in California prisons overdosed last year and required emergency medical attention in what officials acknowledge is part of an alarming spike in opioid use by those behind bars, according to records obtained by The Chronicle. The number of inmates treated for drug or alcohol overdoses jumped from 469 to 997 from 2015 to 2018 — a 113% increase. While many of the prisoners survived, the most recent data available show drug-related inmate deaths are on the rise, too —...

Is Prison Necessary? Ruth Wilson Gilmore Might Change Your Mind [nytimes.com]

There’s an anecdote that Ruth Wilson Gilmore likes to share about being at an environmental-justice conference in Fresno in 2003. People from all over California’s Central Valley had gathered to talk about the serious environmental hazards their communities faced, mostly as a result of decades of industrial farming, conditions that still have not changed. (The air quality in the Central Valley is the worst in the nation, and one million of its residents drink tap water more poisoned than the...

Rise Up Helps Former Inmates Make Transition to New Life (eastcountymagazine.org)

A small nonprofit in Santee is making its mark as a proven transition agent, giving newly-released longtime prisoners a chance for a new life while providing skilled workers for local businesses. At Rise Up Industries ( www.riseupindustries.org ) change doesn’t come quickly and the numbers of those enrolled or completing the program may not initially impress. But for the four graduates of the 18- month program, it’s been a godsend. In addition to extensive classroom and on-the-job training...

Growth through Trauma-Informed Strategies: Coaching and Consultation with Rick Griffin

There is a Chinese proverb that states, “If you want 1 year of prosperity, grow grain. If you want 10 years of prosperity, grow trees. If you want 100 years of prosperity, grow people." The benefits are evident, yet the real question becomes, “how do you grow people?” This Big Idea Session, CRI’s Trauma Coaching and Trauma Consultation Training, answers this question. Schools, organizations, and parents are discovering that the traditional “command and control” style of working with...

James Fox and the Prison Yoga Project (dailygood.org)

James Fox M.A. is the founder and director of the Prison Yoga Project , (PYP), an organization dedicated to establishing yoga and mindfulness programs in prisons and rehabilitation centers worldwide. Since 2002, Fox has been teaching yoga and meditation to prisoners at San Quentin Prison as well as other California State prisons. The Prison Yoga Project helps incarcerated men and women build a better life through trauma-informed yoga with a focus on mindfulness . It helps prisoners make...

Reply by Treston Kingsbury

Hi Ed, First of all, you are amazing for sharing your story. I currently work in the prison system with adults about to be released, and...
Treston Kingsbury

All too often, California’s default mental institutions are now jails and prisons (calmatters.org)

Perhaps nowhere is California’s mental health crisis more evident than in its criminal justice system. After decades of failure to create and fund policies that effectively help people with serious mental illnesses, many now say the jails and prisons have become the state’s default mental institutions. Close to a third of California’s inmates have a documented serious mental illness, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. A few decades ago, fewer than half...

Restoring Prisoners' Access to Education Reduces Recidivism [psmag.com]

As of early April, imprisoned Americans stand to gain easier access to a higher education. Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Mike Lee (R-Utah), and Representatives Danny Davis (D-Illinois), Jim Banks (R-Indiana), and French Hill (R-Arkansas) introduced a bipartisan piece of legislation to restore Pell Grant access to the incarcerated. If the bill passes, 463,000 prisoners will become eligible for federal financial support toward earning a college degree, which experts argue could go a...

Trauma Informed Services to End Mass Incarceration [ACLU N CA]

Sammy A. Nuñez was born into deep poverty in an abusive household. One of his earliest memories includes waking up to his mother’s blood dripping on his face as his step father beat her. This life of fear, anxiety, and trauma would form a child full of anger who would go on to replicate the violence that he had witnessed at home. The education system failed to step in and counsel a child in pain , and instead Sammy was pushed out from school and further down the road toward incarceration.

‘Survivor strong’: Resilience follows trauma [Recordnet.com]

STOCKTON — Life goes on and you can have a positive impact on the world after a traumatic loss. That’s the message many survivors and family members of violent crime victims shared Monday at the Stockton waterfront as they walked or ran a 5-kilometer course to remember a loved one lost to homicide. Roshan Campos never misses the opportunity to support victims and family members. The mother of Carlitha Villalobos, who was 19 when she was shot to death with two other young people in north...

Healing A Mother’s Pain By Forgiving A Killer (kpbs.org)

At 1:30 in the morning in May of 2012, Bevelynn Bravo was woken by a knock on the door. Two detectives had come to tell her that her son was dead. Her 21-year-old son, Jaime Bravo Jr., was stabbed and left to die as he walked out of friend’s house in City Heights. As a volunteer first responder for the San Diego Compassion Project since 2010, Bravo had become accustomed to dealing with tragedy at a crime scene. She offered emotional and administrative support to the families of homicide...

Birthdays behind bars: An essay by an inmate [Street Roots News]

Everybody celebrates in a different way Enrique Bautista is an incarcerated person at Snake River Correctional Institution in Eastern Oregon. He is a periodic contributor to Street Roots. Dec. 22. It is the day after my birthday. I am now 35 years old. I am a 35-year-old man. Wow! It feels like only yesterday I was just another 18-year-old kid with a chip on his shoulder coming into the system. With 20-something years to serve, mad at the world, full of hate and frustration. Everything was...

The prison that gives inmates the KEYS to their cells: 'Knock-first' policy is aimed at creating a 'respectful' environment for offenders [Daily Mail]

Inmates at Britain’s first ‘respectful’ jail have been given the keys to their cells – with prison officers having to knock before entering. Wrexham’s HMP Berwyn, the largest prison in England and Wales, says the move is a ‘rehabilitative’ approach to offenders. Prisoners have been given more privacy, with the ability to come and go from their cells as they please – as well as being able to lock themselves in at any time. The ‘knock first’ policy is aimed at creating a respectful environment...

Pregnant Behind Bars: What We Do And Don't Know About Pregnancy And Incarceration [NPR]

There are 111,616 incarcerated women in the United States, a 7-fold increase since 1980. Some of these women are pregnant, but amid reports of women giving birth in their cells or shackled to hospital beds , prison and public health officials have no hard data on how many incarcerated women are pregnant, or on the outcomes of those pregnancies. A study published in The American Journal of Public Health Thursday changes that. The study included 57 percent of the US prison population (New...

Study: About 4 Percent of Women Are Pregnant When Jailed (nytimes.com)

About 4 percent of women incarcerated in state prisons across the U.S. were pregnant when they were jailed, according to a new study released Thursday that researchers hope will help lawmakers and prisons better consider the health of women behind bars. The number of imprisoned women has risen dramatically over the past decades, growing even as the overall prison rates decline. But there had been a lack of data on women's health and no system for tracking how frequently incarcerated women...

This Nun Found a Way to Save Prisoners' Lives - All by Spelling 'God" Backwards (nationswell.com)

Sister Pauline Quinn says it was a German shepherd who saved her life. After running away from an abusive home and being shuffled between different institutions throughout her adolescence, Quinn was released onto the streets at age 18. Quinn would visit dogs in kennels as a way to cope with her mistreatment. When she eventually adopted a German shepherd named Joni, everything began to turn around. With the confidence Joni gave her, Quinn started thinking about how she could use dogs to help...

Credible Messengers Help Turn Former Convicts into Leaders (nationswell.com)

The key to this program is an initiative called the credible messenger approach to restorative justice. It pairs at-risk and justice-involved youth, who are individuals who’ve been involved with the criminal system, with people who have had comparable life experiences, such as ex-convicts or ex-gang members. “When you think of a credible messenger, you think of those closest to the problem are closest to the solution,” says Jason Clark, the program manager at King County Credible Messengers...

Rebuilding Lives while Building Homes: Tony McGuire's Resilience-Building Carpentry Class

Tony McGuire is a great carpenter. He ran his own construction business for years. Then he wanted to get into teaching. He became a Tenured Faculty member at a local community college, and landed in the state penitentiary as a Basic Skills Carpentry instructor. So how could that be connected to saving lives with a 20 buck investment? Tony got touched by CRI’s trauma-informed training. He saw himself past and present and knew somehow that, “with this information comes the responsibility to...

Programs Help Incarcerated Moms Bond With Their Babies In Prison

In Daidre Kimp's room, the walls are pink and white and there are family photos on a bulletin board. A stroller sits in a corner. It's early morning. Kimp grabs a diaper, a tiny shirt and pants and lifts her smiley, 8-month-old daughter, Stella, from her crib. They are getting ready for the day at the Washington Corrections Center for Women (WCCW) in Gig Harbor, about a one hour drive from Seattle. It's their home, at least until Kimp enters a work-release program next spring. She picks up...

Without access to credit, ex-cons may return to lives of crime [thehill.com]

Every week, more than 10,000 prisoners are released from U.S. prisons and begin the long process of reintegrating into society. For many, a successful reintegration will occur only if they can access the types of credit commonly used by all American citizens, such as credit cards and auto loans. For those unable to borrow, prospects for successful re-entry fall and recidivism risks rise. That’s bad for all of us. Lack of access to credit can push former inmates into poverty traps and cycles...

Conference Updates for Beyond Paper Tigers 2019!

CRI is Proud to Present the 2019 Beyond Paper Tigers Conference Session Descriptions and Presenter Biographies! Join us for the latest information, and strategies to build RESILIENCE! CRI is honored to have expert presenters in their fields to showcase a diverse selection of sessions revolving around the BPT Conference theme, "Building Resilience Across the Life Span." Conference Session Descriptions and Presenter Biographies are now available for review! If you have not purchased conference...

Sponsorship Opportunity to Help Community Resilience Initiative

CRI is seeking various levels of sponsors for our Fourth Annual Beyond Paper Tigers conference. We would love if you would consider partnering with us to assist our community's education, best practices, and treatment strategies. Sponsorships will help pay for speakers, meals, supplies, and conference activities. To partner with us at our highest gift level- as a lead sponsor- would bring profound impact to our conference. We would be grateful for the honor of calling you our lead sponsor,...

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