Act to Prepare Inmates for Re-entry and the Workforce

Summary

This model policy directs the Department of Corrections to provide inmates with certain documentation upon their release, including a state-issued identification card, a social security card, a certified copy of their birth certificate, and other documentation relating to work experience, education, and trade skills to better prepare inmates to reintegrate into the workforce upon release.

Act to Prepare Inmates for Re-entry and the Workforce

BE IT ENACTED BY THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF ­­­__________:

SECTION 1.

(A) When any inmate shall be discharged from an institution of the Department of Corrections and the intended residence designated by the inmate is within this state, the Department of Corrections shall provide the inmate with relevant documentation to assist the inmate in obtaining post-release employment and shall coordinate with the [relevant state agency] to provide a state-issued identification card if the inmate does not have a current state-issued identification card or driver license.

(B) (1) Within nine (9) months prior to the release of an inmate from custody, the Department of Corrections, in coordination with the [relevant state agency], shall identify whether the inmate has a current form of state identification and begin the process of gathering the documentation required for the issuance of a state-issued identification card pursuant to the process provided by state law.

(2) The Department of Corrections shall coordinate with the [relevant state agency] to provide state-issued identification cards to all eligible inmates who do not have a current state issued identification card or driver license upon their release from custody. The identification cards shall be issued, replaced, canceled and denied in the same manner as driver licenses in this state.

(3) The [relevant state agency] shall allow the use of a certified copy of a birth certificate coupled with a Department of Corrections issued record card to serve as a valid form of photo identification documentation to obtain a state-issued identification card.

(4) State-issued identification cards issued with a record card from the Department of Corrections for inmates shall be valid for a period of four (4) years from the month of issuance for an allowable fee to be determined by the [relevant state agency] and are nonrenewable and nontransferable.

(5) The Department of Corrections may utilize any funds available to cover the costs associated with the implementation and administration of this section and the purchase of state-issued identification cards, including, but not limited to, inmate trust funds, existing funds of the Department of Corrections and donations.

(6) The provisions of this section shall apply only to inmates who may receive a state-issued identification card pursuant to the standards established by state law.

(C) For purposes of assisting an inmate in obtaining post-release employment, the Department of Corrections shall provide the inmate with the following documentation:

(1) A copy of the vocational training record of the inmate, if applicable;

(2) A copy of the work record of the inmate, if applicable;

(3) A certified copy of the birth certificate of the inmate, if obtainable;

(4) A Social Security card or a replacement Social Security card of the inmate, if obtainable;

(5) A resume that includes any trade learned by the inmate and the proficiency at that trade by the inmate; and

(6) Documentation that the inmate has completed a practice job interview.

(7) A notification to the inmate if he or she is eligible to apply for a license from a state entity charged with oversight of an occupational license or certification.

(D) The following categories of inmates are not required to complete resumes or practice job interviews prior to their release from incarceration:

(1) Inmates sixty-five (65) years of age or older;

(2) Inmates releasing to medical parole or discharging from a prison infirmary setting;

(3) Inmates releasing to the custody of another jurisdiction on a warrant or detainer; and

(4) Inmates that the Department determines would be physically or mentally unable to return to the workforce upon release from incarceration.

Section 2. The Department of Corrections and the [relevant state agency] are authorized to promulgate rules and procedures to implement the provisions of Sections 1 and 2.

SECTION 3.  This act shall become effective on [DATE].