The mission of Correctional Industries is to help defray the cost of incarceration and to provide work opportunities to inmates. Through work assignments inmates develop occupational skills and discipline that enhance successful reintegration. The goal is to employ the maximum number of inmates consistent with effective use of program capital and maintaining the safety of the public. Correctional Industries employs approximately 500 inmates at nine institutions. Correctional Industries produces quality products, in a timely manner, at competitive prices while instilling a positive work ethic in inmates.
The Program Unit is staffed with Correctional Program Officers who facilitate Violence Reduction and Thinking for a Change programs to inmates at level two and three facilities. The goal of the unit is to facilitate two cycles of each program annually at each of the five sites served by the unit. The Program Unit is operated under the supervision of the Program Services Division.
Thinking For A Change: The Thinking For A Change Program is a cognitive skills based program focused on reducing recidivism. The program is approximately fourteen weeks in length and is facilitated by staff two to three times per week. Inmates at higher risk to recidivate are targeted for this program.
Violence Reduction Program: The Violence Reduction Program targets cognition's that contribute to violent behavior. The goals of the program are to decrease violent behavior and the likelihood of institutional disturbances. During the program inmates identify the specific cognition's which have led to their violent behavior. Once identified, they are taught pro-social strategies and skills to diminish the likelihood of continued violence. Some of the skills taught include interpersonal problem solving, managing anger and effective communication. The program is approximately sixty hours in length and is facilitated by staff two to three times per week. Inmates at higher risk to recidivate are targeted for this program. In March of 1999 the Violence Reduction Program was expanded to include a maintenance component. The maintenance component targets those who successfully completes the Violence Reduction Program and is designed to reinforce skill acquisition.
Correctional Recovery Academy : The Correctional Recovery Academy (CRA) is currently located at eight institutions totaling 596 residential treatment beds. The Department contracts with Spectrum Health Systems, Inc., of Worcester, Massachusetts to provide this program in its facilities.
This intensive residential program is six months in duration and the inmates live in a common housing unit and work towards skill acquisition goals. Inmates participate in class five days per week and there is a minimum of 12.5 hours of structured curriculum-driven activity per week. The curriculum and methodologies are based on the principles of cognitive behavioral treatment. Emphasis is placed on (1) recognition of substance abuse issues, problems, and needs, and a creation of a treatment plan to address those need areas and (2) developing relapse prevention skills, and (3) developing the skills necessary to be a productive member in a community setting.
The Correctional Recovery Academy (CRA) program utilizes rolling admissions and combines the elements of a therapeutic community's social learning approach with an advanced cognitive behavioral curriculum. The CRA is a performance-based program; meaning program participants are required to attend all classes and participation is mandatory. Therefore, participants are considered to have successfully completed the program when they have attended all of the required program phases and completed all of the assigned course-work. While participating in the program, all CRA participants are drug-tested within 24 hours of program admission and on a monthly basis thereafter.
Spectrum's Correctional Recovery Academy is an intensive residential treatment program for moderate to high risk/need offenders. This is determined through the COMPAS (Correctional Offender Management Profiling for Alternative Sanctions) offender risk and needs assessment. The COMPAS Risk Assessment identifies offenders at highest risk to recidivate. The COMPAS Needs Assessment is administered on all inmates who score medium or high risk. Offenders who score moderate to high in the substance abuse scale on their needs assessment are then referred to the Correctional Recovery Academy.
Reentry and Employment Readiness Workshop: The 10-day Reentry and Employment Readiness Workshop meets for 2.5 hours per day and is offered to inmates who are within one year of their earliest possible release date. During the Reentry and Employment Readiness Workshop, reentry planners facilitate curriculum designed to assist inmates in the development of the necessary skills that are needed for successful transition back into the community. The focus of the workshop is employment readiness to include resume building, cover letter, job application, mock interviews and how to maintain employment. The workshop also includes social support, housing plans, financial awareness and budgeting, educational referrals, criminal impact and attainable goal setting. Every inmate who attends the workshop will receive and Employment Readiness Release Portfolio. This release document can include identification, resume, cover letter, practice job applications, WOTC forms, Federal bonding, MassCor work verification, transcripts, certificates, and licenses. Once the inmate has completed the workshop the portfolio is stored within the institution and distributed on the day of release.
Security Threat Group Interdiction: The Department provides a Security Threat Group Interdiction Service at MCI-CJ for inmates who have been determined to be a potential threat to security (via indicators of gang involvement) and/or particularly vulnerable to recruitment from internal gangs. Once the assessment process is complete, the inmate attends a series of orientation sessions, which detail the motivations, and resulting consequences of Security Threat Group activity within the Massachusetts Department of Correction. The curriculum material that attempts to address the motivational forces behind the reasons why certain people join gangs is derived from Los Angeles Police Department research. The information is fostered in a manner designed to promote the awareness of choices that the newly incarcerated inmate is likely to encounter. Information regarding the outcome of rule violations, the Department response to threats to institutional security, and the motivating forces behind inmate affiliation with other Security Threat Group members is also explored. During these orientation sessions particular emphasis is placed on the choices an inmate can make while incarcerated and the resources available to the inmate while incarcerated.
Sex Offender Treatment Program
The purpose of sex offender treatment is to provide a program that reduces recidivism by bringing under control and modifying the behaviors and symptoms that contributed to sexual offending. Individuals who complete the program will have the necessary tools to prevent re-offending. By significantly reducing the risks associated with re-offending, the goal of public safety and the goal of careful reintegration of the offenders into the community can be achieved.
Pre-Treatment seeks to help the inmate become familiar with basic concepts of sex offender therapy. The offender learns to apply this understanding to real life examples, and begin the process of identifying and confronting his/her offending. Offenders begin to work through the early stages of denial. The concepts of relapse prevention and understanding the meaning of a deviant cycle are introduced. For males Pre-Treatment is offered at MCI-Norfolk, NCCI-Gardner and the Massachusetts Treatment Center.
Core Treatment is a unit-based program relying on principles of a therapeutic community. Offenders are required to participate in an assessment prior to beginning Core Treatment. While in Core Treatment, offenders participate in primary therapy groups, psychoeducational classes, behavioral treatment, community unit meetings, and other activities identified in their treatment plans. Core Treatment for male offenders is offered at the Massachusetts Treatment Center.
Maintenance Programming is for inmates who have successfully completed the structured programmatic requirements for Core Treatment. The components of Maintenance Programming are designed to promote the inmates' recovery and will be a model for his treatment in the community. The Maintenance Program is a crucial part of treatment because it is a bridge between the structured components of Core Treatment and release to the community. The gains made in Core Treatment need to be sustained during this transition period.
For female sex offenders the Department offers a specialized sex offender treatment program at MCI Framingham which includes Pre-Treatment, Core Treatment and Maintenance Programming. Each offender is assessed and a treatment plan is developed in accordance with her specialized needs.