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Broken Chains: Beyond Prison

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Beyond Prison 

Being incarcerated is challenging enough, but sometimes the real battle begins when you leave prison, only to find a world that now seems much smaller. How do you deal with the stigma of having been to prison? How easy is it to find employment with a criminal record? And how do you pick up the pieces of your life and try and fit back into society? Join former incarcerated persons Damien Linnane and Richard Brooking as they discuss life after prison. 


See Damien's exhibition with Newcastle libraries.  Broken Chains Newcastle Libraries. 

In the US, every dollar spent on prison education saves taxpayers $4 to $5. (22 August 2013). "Education and Vocational Training in Prisons Reduces Recidivism, Improves Job Outlook"Rand Corporation.  

To break even on the cost of prison education, recidivism must be reduced by between 1.9% and 2.6%. Davis, Lois M. et al (2013). "Evaluating the Effectiveness of Correctional Education: A Meta-Analysis of Programs That Provide Education to Incarcerated Adults" (PDF). Rand Corporation. 

A study of over 14,000 prisoners in Western Australia between 2005 and 2010 found prison education reduced recidivism by 11.25%. Giles, Margaret (2 March 2016). "Study in prison reduces recidivism and welfare dependence: A case study from Western Australia 2005–201"Trends & Issues in Crime and Criminal Justice. 

Read more about the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative for prison reform. "Criminal Justice Reform"Chan Zuckerberg InitiativeRetrieved 15 August 2021. 

Between 2009 and 2019, the QLD prison population increased by 55%, and the female prison population increased by 106%. "Corrections 2030" (PDF)Queensland Government. Retrieved 15 August 2021. 

Read more about Timpson, a company in the UK who comprises 10% of their workforce with former prisoners. Lodge, Jan (9 December 2020). "Good for business and good for society: how organisations can hire more ex-offenders"The Conversation. 

How underwater welding courses for prisoners in California help stop re-offending. Perry, Celia (2008). "Which Works Better Behind Bars, Scuba or Buddha?"Mother Jones. 

People are 6 times more likely to go to prison if one of their parents has been in prison. Opie, Rebecca (18 February 2017). "Children of prisoners six times more likely to end up in jail; SA judge calls for better support"ABC News. 

According to the United Nations General Assembly, the "willingness of politicians to reflect [media-induced] fears in penal policy have led to a reluctance to embed prisoners’ rights to education and to develop models of education". Czerniawski, Gerry (2016). "A Race to the bottom – Prison Education and the English and Welsh Policy Context" (PDF)Journal of Education Policy. 

It costs over $109,000 a year to keep someone in prison in Australia. Knowles, Lorna (8 August 2017). "Australia spending more on prisons, policing than other comparable countries: report"ABC News. 

Treasurers in NSW are aware intervention strategies and rehabilitation programs are more effective at dealing with crime than incarcerating people but will not change anything as "it will just not fly with the public. It just will not fly with the cabinet." Knaus, Christopher (29 December 2017). "Prisons at breaking point but Australia is still addicted to incarceration"The Guardian. 

Read more on links between marital status and reduced recidivism. Andersen, Signe Hald; Andersen, Lars Højsgaard; Skov, Peer Ebbesen (2015). "Effect of Marriage and Spousal Criminality on Recidivism"Journal of Marriage and Family. 

Read more about how community work is considered a better alternative to minimum security prisons. Bartle, Jarryd (16 August 2019). "We know that prison doesn't work. So what are the alternatives?"The Guardian. 

Check out more music by Louisa Magrics. "LXM music" 

Views expressed disclaimer:  

The views, thoughts, opinions expressed throughout this series are solely attributed to the host and guests of the program and do not reflect those of the City of Newcastle

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