A Dark Figure of Corrections: Failure by Way of Participation
Given recent fiscal issues and the continual struggle to reduce the nation’s overuse of incarceration, a renewed focus has been placed on the efforts of community corrections and alternative sanctions. Halfway houses represent a common and, until recently, infrequently evaluated intervention for inmates returning to the community. Although the model has advanced over the years, often providing an array of treatments and services, scant research has examined the impact such programs have on participants’ success in the community. These and other interventions like them, although providing a needed service, create additional avenues for failure and recidivism. However, failures that result in a return to prison are rarely disentangled, representing a “dark figure” of corrections. The current study explores failure types, prevalence, and competing risk predictors for a sample (N = 580) of halfway house participants. Findings both explore and describe the added and varying risks associated with participation community corrections interventions.