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Day two of David Pecker testimony wraps in NY Trump trial; Supreme Court hears arguments on Idaho's near-total abortion ban; ND sees a flurry of campaigning among Native candidates; and NH lags behind other states in restricting firearms at polling sites.

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The Senate moves forward with a foreign aid package. A North Carolina judge overturns an aged law penalizing released felons. And child protection groups call a Texas immigration policy traumatic for kids.

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Wyoming needs more educators who can teach kids trade skills, a proposal to open 40-thousand acres of an Ohio forest to fracking has environmental advocates alarmed and rural communities lure bicyclists with state-of-the-art bike trail systems.

New CA data: Social programs reduce crime

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Tuesday, February 27, 2024   

Programs intended to reduce the chances that someone will end up back behind bars are working, according to a new analysis of California state data.

A new report finds that people who participated in a social program funded by Proposition 47 had a recidivism rate of 15.3% compared with 35% to 45% for people traditionally incarcerated by the Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections.

Linda Penner, chairperson of the California Board of State and Community Corrections, which produced the report, is supportive.

"These results indicate that Prop 47 is delivering the results voters wanted: safer communities where individuals who commit low-level crimes are directed to housing, employment, mental-health and substance-use services instead of prison," she said.

Proposition 47 raised the threshold for a theft to qualify as a felony, which lowered the number of people getting jail time. It has saved the state $800 million in incarceration costs since it passed in 2014 - money that was reinvested in social programs that help justice-involved people get back on their feet.

Saun Hough, vocational services administrator SHIELDS For Families Inc., a nonprofit social services organization in South Central Los Angeles, applauds the focus on crime prevention.

"When you are able to address those issues, you're attacking some of the root causes of crime, and you keep people from feeling like they have no other choice but to go back to crime or to commit crime, but you really help to address the issues that lead them to make those decisions in the beginning," Hough explained.

The analysis also found that 60% of people experiencing homelessness who make it through the program end up finding a stable place to live.


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