Partly in response to the overpopulation problem, broad bipartisan support in both chambers of Congress passed the Bill H.R.1593, the Second Chance Act of 2007: Community Safety Through Recidivism Prevention, more commonly known as The Second Chance Act. This legislation was designed to help reduce recidivism and to facilitate offenders’ reentry into the community.
The features of the legislation included programs aimed at reducing the prison population toward making communities safer. The programs also targeted at improving drug treatment programs, increasing and extending community corrections placement, and enhancing and improving supervision options.
In 2011, President Barack Obama requested $100 million dollars for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012 in order to continue the programs and services afforded by the Second Chance Act, but the House Appropriations Bill only allotted $70 million toward this effort. The Senate allotted nothing toward the effort. The fate and outcome of the Second Chance legislation remains to be seen.
In a minimum of 300 words, research the Second Chance Act using the resources provided and your own research, and post the responses to the following questions to the Discussion Area:
- What do you think is the most pressing problem facing the American Prison System today? Why? Support your position with examples.
- What role can probation and parole play in addressing this problem? How?
- Do you support the funding and continuation of the Second Chance Act? Support your position with examples for why you support or do not support the Act.
- If so, what arguments would you present to the Senate Appropriations Committee to extend the program?
- If not, what arguments would you propose in opposition? Explain your answers.
You may use the links below to help you get started.