Former State Prisoners Graduate from Day Reporting Centers
Source: Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Office
39 former state prisoners, who completed a comprehensive re-entry program, graduated from the Day Reporting Center yesterday, June 21, 2017, at ceremonies held in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria. 22 people graduated from the Santa Barbara Day Reporting Center and 17 from the Santa Maria Day Reporting Center.
For the past seven years, Community Solutions Inc. in partnership with the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office, have offered Day Reporting Centers (DRC) in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria where former state prisoners are taught valuable skills to help them successfully reintegrate back into their communities.
Sheriff Bill Brown, who handed out graduation certificates at both ceremonies said, “Great things are being achieved at our Day Reporting Centers. It is always gratifying to see people who have previously run afoul in the criminal justice system, often in conjunction with problems of addiction and/or mental illness, revitalize their liv es and become sober, productive members of our community. I am proud of the graduates and the fine staff from Community Solutions, Incorporated who have helped these former offenders find their way.”
All of the graduates are former state prisoners who were referred to the Day Reporting Centers from their parole agents and participate voluntarily. Because each client is unique, case managers and program specialists focus on issues specific to the individual and their circumstances. The range of skill development includes but is not limited to; substance abuse treatment, cognitive behavioral intervention, employment services, career planning, school counseling, transitional housing support and service opportunities. The participants set personal goals and develop skills to help them make positive changes in their lives.
Santa Barbara Day Reporting Center graduate Mario Torres received the Client of the Year Award. According to Santa Barbara DRC Program Coordina tor, Deidre Smith, Torres was chosen because he consistently attended and completed each and every assigned group and performed more than 60 hours of community service. She said, “Despite the challenge of re-entering the workforce as a senior, he has found and has maintained steady employment. Mario is a positive influence on all of our clients and exemplifies what it takes to successfully complete the program.”
The Day Reporting Centers have helped more than 1200 former state prisoners re-enter society since they opened in 2010.