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Right on Crime | July 1, 2011
In 2003, Michigan launched its Michigan Prisoner Reentry Initative (MPRI), and it has since seen very promising results. The recidivism rate of persons paroled through MPRI has dropped to less than one third, and the total prison population is down 7,000 over four years, according to Detroit Free Press.
MPRI is a particularly effective parole program because it works hard at re-integrating offenders into society. Some classes offered through the program focus on computer literacy and other modern technologies, while others focus on interview skills, resume building, and networking. Moreover, MPRI helps parolees find housing, transportation, and even tattoo removal through a number of partnerships with local clinics. The program has received national recognition for its successes, and comparatively small price tag of $52 million. To put that figure in perspective, if Michigan were to incarcerate the 12,000 people it paroles every year instead it would cost $408,000,000. (On average, the cost of incarcerating one person for one year in Michigan is $34,000).