sábado, 29 de abril de 2017

From the Acting Director: Office of Minority Health Supports National Reentry Week

From the Acting Director: Office of Minority Health Supports National Reentry Week

Office of Minority Health

Dear Colleague:
Every year, more than 600,000 individuals return to our neighborhoods after serving time in federal and state prisons and another 11.4 million cycle through local jails.  Ensuring the health needs of returning citizens are addressed is critical to supporting better health and public safety outcomes.  Justice-involved individuals have disproportionately high rates of chronic conditions, infectious disease, mental illness, and substance use disorders.  Poor access to health coverage and health care pose significant challenges for this population, can contribute to a worsening of their health status and are associated with higher rates of recidivism.      
Furthermore, the collateral consequences of having a criminal record can prevent individuals from obtaining employment, housing, higher education, and credit—even if the crime occurred long ago.  Parental incarceration also impacts the health and wellbeing of children.  That’s why the Office of Minority Health (OMH) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is proud to support National Reentry Week, April 23-29, 2017, to raise awareness around the struggles of returning to the community after incarceration and to encourage action to help individuals who have paid their debt to society gain meaningful access to opportunities to assist with their transitions.  HHS plays a role in reentry with programs that work to promote family self-sufficiency, child and adult well-being and are at the intersection of successful reentry and public health.
Throughout the week, U.S. Attorneys' Offices will lead reentry-related efforts in their districts. We invite you to join them in these activities or organize your own local events. Activities could take the form of job fairs, reentry roundtables, special events for children of incarcerated parents, or any of a number of other efforts designed to raise awareness of the importance of successful reentry for the safety of our communities and wellbeing of families.
The investments we make today – through the resources we dedicate and the enthusiasm we generate – will pay dividends for the children of returning citizens and for public safety in America. Effective reentry programs (see list of resources on the next page) offer the chance of a better life to those who return from our nation’s correctional facilities.  I encourage you to use the occasion of National Reentry Week to highlight the value of these programs so that we can make a meaningful and lasting difference, not only for the individuals who are served but also to the communities to which they return.
Carol Jimenez Signature
Carol Jimenez, J.D.
Acting Director, Office of Minority Health
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Selected HHS Reentry-Related Resources to Share:

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