Did you know that 43.7% of Victorian prisoners released during 2015–16 returned to prison within two years? With such a high rate of recidivism, our team at Gallant Law strongly believes that effective rehabilitative services for prison dischargees are just as important as what goes on inside the courtroom.
We understand that adjusting back to society after serving jail time can be challenging at the best of times. So how will it be amidst a global pandemic, where people’s freedom is being significantly curtailed all across the world?
For prison dischargees, their new-found, long-anticipated freedom is going to look very different to what they’ve hoped for. Thankfully, there are a number of support services available to assist prison discharges to get back on their feet in the midst of this ‘new normal.’ In this blog post, we’re outlining a number that can help.
The Victorian Association for the Care and Resettlement of Offenders (VACRO) aims to support offenders and their families upon arrest, during imprisonment and upon release. VACRO believes the community has a responsibility to help offenders re-transition safely back into the community.
For those leaving prison, VACRO offers a ReLink and ReConnect program. The ReLink program prepares men and women who are soon to exit prison for reintegration to the community, while the ReConnect program assigns a post-release worker to prison discharges as they settle back into the community.
Each of these programs remains up and running during COVID-19. Support is offered through phone or video link. Visit http://www.vacro.org.au/NEWS.aspx for more.
With the operational goals of ‘recover, rehabilitate and reintegrate’, ASCO aims to give people another chance. The organisation’s vision is of a safe and inclusive Australia free of crime and prisoners. They offer services for substance abuse, mental health, disability support, leaving prison, housing support and employment support.
While ASCO’s officers are closed, they continue to offer phone support and essential face to face services (with physical distancing measures in place). Learn more at https://www.acso.org.au/covid-19-information
Our founder, Lauren Cassimatis, is proud to be an ambassador for Kaged Lions.
A men’s support network, the team at Kaged Lions is dedicated to breaking the social stigma of what it ‘means to be a man’ and aims to give men permission to speak freely about their emotions and mental health. At Kaged Lions, they get it: COVID-19 means that more and more stress factors arise every day. In their own words, ‘if you or a mate are struggling mentally and financially through the COVID-19 crisis, let us know, we can help.’
Here at Gallant Law, we understand that being involved in the criminal justice system is always overwhelming. Throw in a global pandemic, and everything is suddenly subject to change. But we’ve always been big supporters of reaching out for help when you need it. So if you or a loved one is released from jail into this ‘new normal’ and is struggling to adapt, we urge you to check out the incredible work of GROW, ASCRO and Kaged Lions.
As always, if you’re seeking solicitors with uncompromising service for a criminal matter, contact Gallant Law today to arrange a free initial phone consultation on +61 3 9070 9885 or on our after-hours line (0412 513 915).