Spring 2021 Fellow: Ryne Reger, ‘24 (Prospective Public Policy)

Summer 2021 Fellow: Karen Cho, ‘24 (Political Science)

Office Description

The Office of Reentry Services (ORS) promotes effective policies, practices and services to implement the Public Safety Realignment Program and the Reentry Strategic Plan approved by the Board of Supervisors.  These plans are countywide efforts to reduce recidivism and ensure public safety through effective cross-system integration with health and human services and the criminal justice systems. ORS is responsible to coordinate, facilitate, and perform follow-up in all aspects of the Program and Plan, which include budget and fiscal oversight; policy and legislative oversight; departmental coordination; participation on various working groups, councils, networks, partnerships; data and evaluation oversight.

Most importantly, the ORS is responsible for overseeing the operations of the County of Santa Clara Reentry Resource Center (RRC) a centralized assessment and resource facility, where individuals released from custody and/or on Probation or Parole can receive service referrals and wrap around services to assist them in becoming stable and self-sufficient as they reintegrate into the community. The center is comprised of multiple county departments: Sheriff’s Office/Department of Correction, Behavioral Health (Department of Drugs & Alcohol, Mental Health, Housing, Faith Based Collaborative), Ambulatory Care (Medical Mobile Unit), Social Services Agency, Probation, Public Defender, and the ORS.

Potential Projects

The Fellow at the Office of Reentry Services will:

  • Assist with Development of Town Hall and Client Conversation (cross representation of stakeholders) about racial inequities and reentry efforts
  • Assist with coordinating working groups of the Reentry and Public Safety Realignment Strategic Plan efforts; • Identify best practices in coordinating services for clients using client navigators
  • Prepare an inmate surveys (Jail Custody Programming) and Reentry Resource Center surveys (aim is for Pretrial clients and Probation releases)
  • Attend virtual (in-person) public meetings as requested by staff
  • Opportunity to design and implement a project in consultation with ORS over the summer as per funding requirements
  • Racial Wealth Gap: Further research the current limitations of reentry policies that address asset poverty for ex-offenders in Santa Clara County, and in what areas can they improve
  • Universal Basic Income: Examine the goals of universal basic income to alleviate poverty and how this addresses racial disparities and identify best practices that provide universal basic income to formerly incarcerated individuals. How Office of Reentry Services partner with organizations such as the Stanford Basic Income Lab to consider a pilot program
  • Jail Alternatives: Research on whether these types of programs work and whether other States have established these programs
  • Any other related tasks and responsibilities that may be required of the Fellow.

Desired Skills

  • Strong research skills;
  • Strong organizational skills;
  • Strong written and verbal communication skills;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills;
  • Experience working collaboratively in a team structure;
  • Excellent skills in Microsoft applications; and
  • Computer literate in other standard software applications

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