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Helping convicts with life after prison - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Helping convicts with life after prison

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MONTPELIER, Vt. -

An advocacy group suggests changes to better help former inmates reintegrate into society.

Sarah Flynn of Vermont Interfaith Action told lawmakers three changes could make a big difference. The first is the creation of a new website providing info about jobs, housing and other social services for the recently released. The second-- mandatory completion of a re-entry checklist that lists an offender's education, employment opportunities, necessary medications and income. And finally, she suggested creating identity cards that does not reveal the offender's status as a convict.

Flynn says without a release strategy many former prisoners are set up for failure.

"People arriving on the street without appropriate clothing without medication, without transportation or housing or social services or any means of obtaining help," Flynn said.

Corrections already uses re-entry checklists but they're not done in every case.

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