Pathway Home Evaluation Brief: Establishing Reentry Services to Support People After Release

Pathway Home Evaluation Brief: Establishing Reentry Services to Support People After Release

Published: Aug 01, 2023
Publisher: Mathematica
Associated Project

Evaluation of the Pathway Home Grant Program

Time frame: 2020-2025

Prepared for:

U.S. Department of Labor

Key Findings
  • Grantees focused their services on addressing participant needs and barriers to employment and partnered with employers and community-based organizations to offer a greater variety of specialized services.
  • To build partnerships with employers, grantees attended job fairs, reimbursed employers for training opportunities, attended chamber of commerce and workforce development board meetings, employed dedicated employer outreach staff, and established industry advisory boards. To build relationships with community-based organizations, grantees suggested connecting early, networking often, and maintaining ongoing communication.
  • Grantees faced several barriers in connecting participants to jobs, including limited housing, transportation, and health services; the stigma of criminal records; and difficulty maintaining employment while complying with the requirements of community supervision and mandated treatment or services.
  • To encourage participants to engage with services after release, grantees began building relationships with participants inside correctional facilities, collected multiple points of contact at intake, and offered incentives for reaching program milestones.

In 2020, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) funded Mathematica and partner Social Policy Research Associates to conduct an evaluation of the Pathway Home grants. This brief focuses on the 22 Pathway Home grants awarded in 2021 and describes the grantees’ experiences during their first year of implementation.

People transitioning from incarceration to successful reentry often face difficulties finding jobs because of obstacles related to mental health, the stigma of being a former offender, and limits on the types of jobs they can obtain because of restrictions for people with criminal records. Findings from evaluations of prior U.S. Department of Labor-funded reentry grants highlight the importance of addressing participants’ basic needs directly and through partnerships with community organizations that understand the needs of those returning from incarceration. This brief builds on those lessons by detailing how the Pathway Home grantees implemented services and established community partnerships to provide community-based services that address participant needs and help connect them to employment opportunities.

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