Although my sons have been a part of the Texas prison system for over 20 years, the first time I heard this word was at a TIFA* rally in Austin on 11/7/2014. I had no idea what it meant and still can't pronounce it.
Thankfully, my youngest finally grew up and realized what kept sending him back; he was hanging with the wrong crowd. He has since found someone to love that loves and supports him so he has NO intention of ever going back.
This is one of the things that those 'on the inside' and/or 'behind the wall' need. Love and support from the outside. Parents, children, spouses, friends or just PenPals; EVERYBODY needs SOMEBODY to support them. Francois from the Estelle unit stated it best in his Twogether in Texas course material, "She made me whole again, giving me life after losing HOPE".
Why am I blogging about Recidivism in a Prison Wedding blog, you ask? Why not?
Many of our couples start out as PenPals after being introduced by family members or finding a name on a website. Some of these write for many years while others a few short months before deciding that this is the person they want to spend the rest of their lives with.
Whether they knew each other before or 'Met While Incarcerated', love is love and the heart wants what the heart wants.
The Family and Recidivism
Incarcerated men and women who maintain contact with supportive family members are more likely to succeed after their release.
Texas Department of Criminal Justice has an Agency Strategic Plan for 2017 - 2021
GOAL: Rehabilitation and Reentry Programs To develop and provide evidence-based rehabilitation and reentry programs that reduce recidivism and facilitate positive change in the lives of offenders.
TIFA's mission is to break the cycle of crime by strengthening families through support, education and advocacy.