Legislators try to break the cycle of violence

    By: Phil Gregory

    Members of the New Jersey Assembly are considering how to tackle the difficult challenge of ex-cons returning to prison.

    By: Phil Gregory

    Members of the New Jersey Assembly are considering how to tackle a difficult challenge: breaking the cycle that finds ex-cons returning to lives of crime once they’re out, and then returning to prison. A legislative hearing in Trenton yesterday looked at issues including drug rehabilitation and the growing number of female prisoners.

    Listen:
    [audio: 090506pgcrime.mp3]

    Assembly Majority Leader Bonnie Watson Coleman hosted the hearing and said mass incarceration has not reduced crime or costs and there are more effective ways to prevent repeat offenses.

    Watson Coleman: We’re looking at reforms to services that are impediments to moving forward such as getting an education, getting housing, getting foods stamps, all that kind of stuff. Job training but specific job training, job training for meaningful jobs.

    In these tough economic times Assemblywoman Watson Coleman said it’s unlikely funding will increase and the money in the criminal justice system needs to be spent more efficiently and effectively.

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