Recidivism: Is Illinois on Top of its Game?

Luncheon Forum

Recidivism: Is Illinois on top of its game?

Esther Franco-Payne Program Director of Metropolis Strategies

Featured Speaker:
B. Diane Williams
President and CEO of Safer Foundation

Juliana Stratton
Executive Director of the Cook County Judicial Advisory Council

John Maki
Executive Director of the John Howard Association of Chicago

January 10th, 2013


In the United States we spend upwards of $50 billion a year to ensure public safety and create safer communities. The return on our investment has produced mixed results at best and in some cases major failures. National recidivism rates however around 40%, meaning 4 in 10 offenders within three years of release will return to prison, according to a 2011 report by the Pew Center on the States; in Illinois recidivism rate is 47%. The Safer Foundation, the John Howard Association, the Cook County Judicial Advisory Council, and Metropolis Strategies work to reduce recidivism and reform the criminal justice system in the State of Illinois. The Safer Foundation helps people with criminal records obtain employment and become active members of their community, while the John Howard Association tries to ensure that people inside of state correctional facilities are treated humanely. The Judicial Advisory Council specifically works to ensure public safety and everyone’s impartial right to justice, while the Justice and Violence Department of Metropolis Strategies works to reform the juvenile justice system, the Illinois Criminal Code and Code of Corrections.
The Niagara Foundation will be hosting a panel discussion moderated by Esther Franco-Payne, Program Director of Metropolis Strategies. The panel will feature three speakers: the President and CEO of the Safer Foundation—Diane Williams; the Executive Director of the Cook County Judicial Advisory Council, Juliana Stratton; and the Executive Director of the John Howard Association of Chicago, John Maki. Speakers will discuss ways in which recidivism can be reduced, how Illinois’ recidivism rate and reentry efforts compare with other states, and ways to reform the criminal justice system.

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