LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) — The Michigan Department of Corrections is now working with a California-based technology nonprofit.
Corrections staff are hoping this partnership will help lower recidivism rates and helps Michiganders incarcerated and under supervision successfully transition back into society.
“We are the Department of Corrections for a reason. We’re not the department of lock them up and throw away the key,” says Chris Gautz, a spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Corrections.
And they are not hoping for repeat offenders so the department is now working with a non-profit called Rediviz.
It’s a 3-year contract and they will take data provided by Michigan Department of Corrections with the goal of *enhancing outcome-based criminal justice reform.”
Chris Gautz says there’s a lot of data to go through.
“We have 33,000 prisoners, ya know tens of thousands of parolees and probationers and a lot of other data from a lot of other data sets,” says Gautz.
But their findings will show them what they are doing right or can improve on. Ultimately they want to create good citizens and taxpayers.
“Rather than tax burdens by being in the system.”
And additionally better the lives of incarcerated people and their families.
This is sometimes a generational shift that needs to happen, so they do not return to a life of crime.
“We want them to have their behavior corrected, their attitudes shifted so that when they leave prison they leave a better person than which they came to us,” continues Gautz.
Right now, the recidivism rate in Michigan is at the lowest it’s even been in state history at 26.6%.
That ismeans 6th best in the nation.
“While those are great numbers for us and we’re really proud of that, we want to do even better,” continues Gautz.
The data outcomes can provide multiple insights they didn’t have access to before.
“We can take all of the prisoners that were in for those type of crimes and then look at all of the programs they took to help them address those criminogenic behaviors.”
And the Department of Corrections has the support of the Governor’s office.
Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist says, “When we are able to positively impact the lives of incarcerated michiganders, without endangering public safety, it is setting up everyone within our justice system for productive, future successes.”
“We want to continue to do that, we want to continue to be on the cutting edge of a lot of these issues and provide better outcomes for all Michiganders.”