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Printable version - Programs Component
The Department’s programs are designed to prepare offenders to be productive and law abiding citizens upon release. When an offender first enters IDOC, he/she is reviewed and given a risk assessment to determine the factors, which could hinder successful release. They are then given an accountability plan that addresses which programs work best in achieving successful re-entry, into their community. IDOC program areas include substance abuse treatment, mental health treatment, educational/vocational apprenticeships, work release/reentry education, religious services, and cognitive skill classes. Each program is designed to give offenders the tools needed to successfully re-enter their communities.
Substance Abuse Programs
AA/NA/CMA/Gambler Anonymous: Alcoholics Anonymous (AA), Narcotics Anonymous (NA), Crystal Meth Anonymous (CMA), and Gamblers Anonymous (GA) are programs that are best described as self-help and supportive. Volunteers come into IDOC facilities and share their stories of addiction along with examples of their recoveries, and serve as positive role models for offenders. These programs are also available throughout IDOC Facilities.
CLIFF (Clean Lifestyle is Freedom Forever): CLIFF is a specialized Therapeutic Community designed specifically for those addicted to methamphetamine. The program calls for a minimum of eight months of intensive cognitive/ behavioral counseling based upon best practices. Offender-clients are provided up to 15 hours each day of programming to specifically assist in their recovery, build appropriate social skills, and gain job interviewing strategies. There are two male CLIFF Units in the Department and one female unit. The CLIFF Units have demonstrated a positive impact on both recidivism and conduct. In 2009, the IDOC CLIFF Program was awarded the American Correctional Association “Exemplary Offender Program of the Year”.
Outpatient Substance Abuse Program: The Outpatient Substance Abuse Program consists of three Phases. Phase 1 is a guided self-‐study that is a basic drug education manual. Phase 2 is cognitive/behavioral treatment that is evidence-based and derived from "Best Practices". Phase 3 is a three part program based upon relapse prevention and re-entry into society. The 12 Steps and the Texas Christian University (TCU) Straight Ahead programs are also included. These substance abuse programs are available at all IDOC facilities.
Purposeful Incarceration: In 2009, the Indiana Department of Correction began a cooperative project with Indiana courts known as Purposeful Incarceration (P.I.). The Department works in collaboration with judges who sentence chemically-addicted offenders and document that they will consider a sentence modification should the offender successfully complete an IDOC Therapeutic Community Program. Purposeful Incarceration provides a means for the Department and the judiciary to encourage addicted offenders to obtain the treatment they need and allows the Agency and the courts to work together towards offenders’ successful re-entry into society.
Therapeutic Communities (TCs): The Department’s Therapeutic Communities (TCs) are specialized intensive in-house programs designed to treat addicted offenders. The programs call for a minimum of eight months of intensive cognitive and behavioral programming. This approach is evidence based and considered a national “best practice” in treating addiction. Offenders are provided up to 15 hours each day of programming to specifically assist in their recovery, build appropriate social skills, and gain job interviewing strategies. The IDOC’s TCs have over 1700 treatment beds. The TC’s have demonstrated a positive impact on both recidivism and conduct
Sex Offender Programs
INSOMM (Indiana Sex Offender Management and Monitoring): The Indiana Sex Offender Management and Monitoring (INSOMM) Program provides sex offenders an integrated continuum of specific services, beginning within IDOC correctional facilities, proceeding through the re-entry process, and continuing in communities across the state. Upon release, community supervision employs the “Containment Model” which consists of a team that monitors each sex offender’s activities and programming during their parole supervision. The team consists of the INSOMM Parole Agent, treatment provider, and polygrapher. The primary goal of the program is to enhance public safety by reducing recidivism of convicted sex offenders.
Mental Health, Cognitive, and Social Programs
Cage Your Rage for Women: Cage Your Rage for Women is an anger management workbook specifically targeted to women. The exercises are intended for women working with their counselors either individually or in a group setting. Nevertheless, the workbook’s focus on women’s anger issues suggests that its content can be helpful to all women, not just those in counseling with a trained professional.
Cognitive Skills: Thinking for a Change (T4C) is an integrated, cognitive behavioral program for offenders that includes cognitive restructuring, social skills development, and development of problem-solving skills. T4C was introduced into the adult facilities with the cooperation of the National Institute for Corrections, which provides the curriculum, materials, and training. This program is available in most IDOC Facilities. Throughout the nation, cognitive skills programs have shown promising results in helping offenders make better decisions in their lives.
Mental Health Treatment: The IDOC offers several levels of mental health treatment and services to offenders. Along with individual treatment to offenders in general population, the Department offers specialized units, which house only those who need mental health services. There are currently two of these units in IDOC. One is located at the New Castle Correctional Facility and the other at the Wabash Valley Correctional Facility.
PLUS (Purposeful Living Units Serve): The Purposeful Living Units Serve (PLUS) program is a faith-and character-based community that encourages offenders to choose alternatives to criminal thinking and behavior by providing a focus on spiritual and character development, life-skills training, community service, and preparation for living as law-‐abiding citizens. Key components of the program include fostering a positive peer culture, a curriculum that addresses risk factors, and establishing a mentoring relationship with a positive role model from the community. The PLUS program has demonstrated reduction in conduct reports as well as recidivism. In 2009, PLUS was nationally recognized by the American Correctional Chaplains Association by receiving their Offender Program of the Year award.
Religious Services: IDOC has a wide range of religious services and incorporates a large number of religious faiths that are available to offenders. Chaplains and volunteers provide group religious services, musical programs, special events, serious illness/death notifications, religious study programs and pastoral counseling to meet all standards called for in federal and state constitutions, judicial decisions and IDOC policy.
Community Re-entry and Occupational programs
Work Release and Re-entry Education Programs: Work Release and Re-entry Programs provide offenders with an opportunity, during the final months of confinement, to participate in a community based Re-entry Education and Work Release Program whereby they can acquire gainful employment, develop a post incarceration work history, save funds for release, begin the family re-unification process, develop and practice practical and pro-social life skills, work on substance abuse, and cognitive behavioral issues.
Community Work Crews: Community Work Crews provide offenders an opportunity to give back to the community and instill a strong work ethic while providing real life job skills essential to a successful release. Work crews reduce offender idleness, provide resources for task completion, and result in positive partnerships between the community and the Agency. Entities participating include:
Unlike traditional offender crews that are supervised by correctional officers, the work crews are placed under the supervision of other agencies’ state workers. The Department of Correction provides training and support to participating agencies, which pick up offenders each day and then return them to the facility after their work is completed.
Community Service Projects: Offenders participate in a multitude of community service projects as a service to Indiana’s communities. The following organizations have offered offenders an opportunity to give back to the communities while preparing offenders for successful integration as law-abiding citizens:
Offender Identification Assistance: In 2009, the Indiana Department of Correction and the Bureau of Motor Vehicles (BMV) partnered in assisting offenders in obtaining a state identification prior to release. BMV mobile units visit several facilities across the state to provide offenders with a state identification card. The Agency also works with the Social Security Administration to ensure that each offender has a valid social security number and card upon release.
Short Term Offender Program Unit (STOP): New Castle Correctional Facility (NCCF) opened Indiana’s first short term offender program (STOP) in February 2010. The program is conducted in one of the facility’s housing units and can accommodate a total of 226 offenders. Historically, short term offenders have not qualified for the same programming opportunities as long term offenders. The STOP program is designed to assist the short term offender in receiving an appropriate level of services while incarcerated, facilitating a positive lifestyle change. Short term offenders are defined as those with a sentence length of less than 12 months. The actual average length of incarceration for a STOP offender at NCCF is three and a half months.
The goal of the STOP program is to prepare short term offenders to optimally function in their respective communities after release. Case management is tailored, program services are abbreviated, and a community resource connection has been developed to accommodate the needs of the STOP offender.
A broad spectrum of program offerings has proven to be fundamental to the success of the STOP unit. Unit team staff use a computer based “STOP Program Referral Guide” as an offender program management framework. The following programs have been made available: Anger Management, Substance Abuse, Character First!, Healthy Relationships, Pre-Release (MPOP), Thinking for a Change, Uncommon, and Bridges.
Standardized Pre-release Re-entry Program: The Standardized Pre-Release Orientation Program (SPOP) is a basic pre-release re-entry program provided to most offenders. This program consists of a 65-hour core curriculum and at least an additional 15-hour curriculum determined by each facility’s re-entry coordinator. SPOP is presented in a group setting. All offenders are assigned to a pre-release re-entry program within one year of release from the Department, to allow the offender to complete the appropriate components of the program. Every effort is made to retain the offender in the program until completion. This program is available in all IDOC facilities, except for work release centers.
Re-entry Programming in the Workplace: More than 80% of PEN workers participate in the United States Department of Labor (USDOL) Apprenticeship Program. Offender workers who enroll in a registered apprenticeship receive a variety of related classroom training in addition to on the job requirements. Computer skills, forklift certification, workplace safety and basic first aid are required of all participants. Those who complete the requirements leave prison with valuable certification from the Department of Labor, which they can take to a job interview. A prospective employer can verify an ex-‐ offender’s prison work history through the USDOL data base.
PEN’s Re-entry Department offers additional services for its offender workers as they progress toward their release date. Using primarily the National Institute of Corrections’ Offender Workforce Development Training resources, offenders have access to Career Path Planning workshops, Job Clubs and Career Resource Centers. These programs further assist in post-release preparation by providing a number of resources, including time management, money management, application/resume writing, career planning, and decision-making skills.
Substance Abuse Programs
Clean Lifestyle Is Freedom Forever (CLIFF) (for Juvenile offenders): This program is designed to provide services to youth who have experienced significant negative life experiences as a result of substance abuse or residing with family members who use substance abuse. The youth receive individual counseling, group counseling, pro-social skills (life skills) and family counseling. The focus of all treatment services is to provide youth with the tools necessary to change their thinking and behavior resulting in opportunities to develop and maintain a clean and sober lifestyle.
The Stay Sharp Substance Abuse Program: This program is a Coping skills technique program, along with motivational interviewing, drug education and a relapse prevention. The program’s anagram, Stay Sharp, is its organizing principle:
S= Striving for Engagement
H= How I get there
A= Abuse or Addiction
R= Ready to Change
P= Planning for the Future
Sex Offender Programs
Sex Offender Treatment and Education Program (STEP): The Sex offender Treatment and Education Program (STEP) will be provided to all youth who have been adjudicated on a sex offense. Youth will be housed in C-Complex (of what institution?) for the duration of their STEP programming but would be eligible for alternative housing once they have completed their individual STEP programming.
Mental Health, Cognitive, and Social Programs
Anger Replacement Therapy (ART): This is a cognitive behavior, multi-‐modal curriculum comprised of three components: Structured Learning Training, Anger Control Training and Moral Reasoning. This program provides the youths with the means to lean self-‐control when their anger is aroused. Each step teaches the youth to reduce their anger and substitute pro-social behaviors. The anger cycle is taught in steps beginning with Triggers, Cues, Anger Reducers, Reminders and Self Evaluation.
Cage Your Rage (Juvenile Offenders): This program is designed to help youth understand and deal with anger by recording their feelings and actions. It will teach youth ways to not only recognize their anger but also control it through making appropriate choices. Chapters discuss: what causes anger, growing up with anger, how emotions develop, relaxation, managing anger, self talk, action controls, etc.
Gang Realities in Our World (GROW): This program focuses on gang intervention and personal growth. This program was inspired by the book “Gangbusters” written by Lonnie Jackson. Youth placed in this program are housed together in the same unit and attend gang intervention groups to work on developing appropriate pro-‐social bonds, understanding appropriate role models, victim empathy, etc.
Purposeful Living Units Serve (PLUS): This program provides an opportunity for youth to explore and choose alternatives to criminal thinking and behavior through an emphasis on spiritual, moral and character development, life-‐skills training and intentional preparation for living as law abiding citizens who contribute to the well-‐being of their community.
Restorative Justice: DYS has implemented Restorative Justice Projects at each facility to assist with youth accountability and community safety. Another component of Restorative Justice that has been implemented at each facility is Restorative Justice Conferencing with victims, family members and others. A Restorative Justice Conference brings victims, offender, and their respective families and supporters together with a trained facilitator to discuss the offense and its effects. The focus of a conference is the offense itself and repairing the harm that has been done. A primary goal of this process is to have the offender take responsibility for his/her actions. The conference addresses the needs of victims and allows their voices to be heard while helping to bring closure to the incident.
Thinking For A Change: Treatment Program that addresses criminal thinking errors through cognitive-‐behavioral skills training; social skills training; and problem solving skills training. The youth learn and appreciate that cognitive restructuring does require some cognitive skill method. Cognitive skills require an objective, systematic approach to identifying thinking, beliefs, attitudes and values. Thinking Reports are a core part of this program that are used as homework assignments.
VOICES: Voices is a gender informed / gender specific program of self discovery and empowerment for female offenders. It encourages young women to seek and celebrate their “true selves” by giving them a safe space, encouragement, structure, and support to embrace their important journey of self-‐discovery. The focus is on issues that are important in the lives of adolescent females from modules about self and connection with others to exploring health living and the journey ahead. The curriculum uses a variety of therapeutic approaches, including psycho-‐ educational, cognitive-‐behavioral, expressive arts and relational theory.
Why Try: Youth learn ten visual metaphors, such as the Reality Ride, Tearing off Labels, Defense Mechanisms, etc. These metaphors teach and help students explore new social skills and coping skills techniques to break old behavior patterns and to achieve opportunity, freedom, and self respect in their lives. Youths complete assignments that involve writing, art, music, and physical activities to practice their skills. Youths then learn how to apply the skills to their criminogenic needs, their high risk factors, and their life upon release.
You Can See Over The Wall: This is the final metaphor in the Why Try program. Youths are enrolled in this once they complete the Why Try core program. This metaphor summarizes the rest of the program and assists youths in pulling together what they have learned. Youths re-‐ visit skills learned and explore them more deeply. The youth also are expected to show how they are applying the skills from Why Try in order to develop healthy, pro-‐social habits of thinking, feeling, believing and behaving. Youth also begin to practice making re-‐entry plans to change their lifestyle and address the triggers in each of their needs that will lead them back to negative patterns.
Community Re-entry and Occupational programs
Employability Skills: This program prepares youth for process of obtaining employment. The program will discuss goal setting, financial planning, employment resources, job conduct, interviewing, applications, resume development and professional appearance.
Future Solider Program: The purpose of this program is to identify youth who meet military enlistment criteria, develop and prepare them as legitimate military recruits and arrange for their re-entry placement into one of the military branches whenever possible. The youth selected for this program will have volunteered for the program, submitted an application, have reached the age of sixteen and completed a formal interview process. Participation in this program in no way assures acceptance into the military, however, the facility will assist in the process. Program objectives are: develop good citizenship, develop self-reliance, leadership and responsiveness to constituted authority, improve the ability to communicate well, develop an appreciation for physical fitness, increase respect for the role of the US Armed Forces in support of national objectives and develop a basic knowledge of military skills.
Inmate to Workmate: An Aramark Food Service Program offers youth the opportunity to learn food handling and preparation skills. Inmate to Workmate provides youth with both classroom education and a practicum application of hands-on experience.
Youth Work Programs: For years, many offender work assignments were primarily viewed as a means of reducing idleness and, to a lesser degree, considered a component of offender re-entry. Today, successful re-entry begins with a multifaceted case management process. Working in a correctional industries environment is part of that process. By combining the major components of education, substance abuse treatment, faith-‐based practices, and real world work experience, offenders are able to develop new skills and the self-discipline needed to succeed.
The Workplace Environment (Juvenile Offenders): PEN (Prison Enterprise Network) Products, Indiana’s correctional industry program, utilizes an offender workforce to operate a self-sustaining business within the framework of the Indiana Department of Correction. PEN offers the opportunity for offenders to experience a real world work environment during their period of incarceration. PEN has a number of traditional industries such as metal working, garments, mattress, chemicals, and printing. Additionally, PEN has a number of partnerships with private industry: packaging, auto parts remanufacturing, pallet refurbishing, recycling, filter manufacturing, and wiring harness production.
While learning specific job skills is important, it is only a portion of what the correctional industries experience offers. Beginning with an application process that mirrors that found in the business world, the offenders go through a structured interview process and, if hired, a new worker orientation before they begin working. More than just job skills are taught. Getting up each morning and performing a full day’s work contributes to developing a work ethic, teamwork, and communication skills. The offender also learns quality control procedures, production reporting, warehousing, and shipping/receiving. All are a part of the PEN work experience.
The Indiana Department of Correction in partnership with Indiana-based providers and other state agencies provides formal academic and vocational programs. The focus of all programs from basic literacy through on-site college degree programs is to prepare the offender for post-release employment. On-going research demonstrates a strong correlation among education attainment, employment, and recidivism.
In reaction to the fact that the undereducated are over-represented within the prison population, some states have created mandatory correctional education programs. In contrast, Indiana has created an incentive system that awards credit time to offenders who complete a prescriptive educational program. This approach has demonstrated tremendous value in promoting public safety by reducing the likelihood offenders will recidivate. These programs include:
Basic literacy provides instruction in reading, writing, and mathematics in order to prepare adult offenders for transitioning into the labor market, higher academic programs, or vocational training. Thinking for a Change, a cognitive behavior change program is an integrated component of the Department’s Basic Literacy program.
General Educational Development (or GED) on-site programs prepare offenders in five subject areas which, when passed, certify that the offender has academic skills comparable to that of high school graduates. The GED programs are promoted heavily. In a 2009 survey, Indiana Employers ranked the GED certificate as the number one indicator for basic work readiness.
Career Technical programs are based on the projected employment needs of the State through 2016 including the “soft skills” of communication and teamwork that are noted in employer surveys.
College degree programs, up to and including a Bachelor’s degree, are provided on-site by six Indiana-based colleges and universities. Offenders are allowed to apply for the State Student Assistance Commission grant awards to help defray the costs of enrollment.
The delivery model for basic literacy, GED, and the Career Technical programs is provided by Ivy Tech Community College in the adult facilities. The basis for the partnership is that the Ivy Tech Community College is the state's largest workforce training provider, awarding nearly 20,000 certifications and one million hours of training annually. The goal is to translate Ivy Tech’s achievements in the larger community to the incarcerated population. Equally important is that Ivy Tech is an educational service provider throughout the State. The scope of those programs allows the integration of the correctional education programs with the public system for a continuation of education upon release.
Correctional education is fundamental to the Department’s re-entry goals and remains a prerequisite to the success of many other programs. Speaking, writing, reading and listening, as well as quantitative reasoning, are cognitive skills. Substance Abuse treatment, anger management, and recognizing and changing criminal thinking are critical interventions for those segments of the correctional population needing them, and they succeed best when built on a sound mental and educational foundation.
The federal Second Chance Act is promoting new efforts to prepare offenders for re-entry before release. Two of the key elements mentioned in the law are education and employment training, which Indiana’s correctional education program continues to support for incarcerated individuals.
Juvenile Education Component
The Indiana Department of Correction, Division of Youth Services (DYS), is responsible to consult with the State Superintendent of Public Instruction and the Indiana Commission on Vocational and Technical Education of the Department of Workforce Development to implement academic and vocational education curricula and programs for incarcerated youths (IC 11-10-5-1). As such, qualified personnel are utilized to provide the instruction. DYS also includes special education programs, which are governed under IC 20-35-2 and IAC 511-7.
The objective of all educational programs for youths is to bridge the gap between the youth’s prior educational experience and his educational experience upon re-entry. Youth are assessed at the time of their enrollment in DYS schools, and their educational program is planned based on individual need. DYS schools provide access to middle school/junior high curricula, high school curricula aligned to the Core 40 diploma, GED programming, and Career Technical Training.
In 2009, the Indiana Department of Correction established a contractual agreement with Ball State University and Ivy Tech State Community College to provide the education services to youth enrolled at the Madison Juvenile Correctional Facility in Madison, Indiana. This delivery model has proven to be successful, and was recognized by the American Correctional Association in a recent facility accreditation
By policy, all teachers employed by the State of Indiana as Institutional Teachers and assigned to juvenile facility schools are required to be dual-licensed in special education and a content area. Teachers assigned to teach Core Academic Subjects are required to be Highly Qualified (as defined by the Indiana Department of Education). DYS schools are accountable to IDOE and USDOE through on-going program reviews and data submissions. Juvenile facility schools are accredited by the North Central Association/Advanced as Comprehensive Special Purpose Schools, and credits earned in juvenile facility schools transfer to the youth’s public school upon re-entry to his/her community.
Responsible Fatherhood: The Indiana Department of Correction (IDOC) in collaboration with the National Fatherhood Initiative offers the “Inside Out Dads” curriculum at all adult male facilities. The purpose of the “Inside Out Dads” program is to provide the tools for each offender to become a more involved, responsible and committed father. Session topics include: The Meaning of Masculinity, Physical and Mental Health, Dealing with Stress and Anger, Carrying Emotions, Recognizing Feelings of Grief and Loss, Love and Relationships, Improving Communication Skills, Building Self-Worth, Discipline, Developmental Stages of Childhood and Creating a Fathering Plan.
Healthy Marriage Plan: The IDOC offers a Healthy Marriage program at 13 different adult male facilities and 2 female facilities. The curriculum being used is “Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program (PREP)”. Marriage skills education seminars are offered twice a year. The seminar is a two day workshop held at the facility. Topics covered include Understanding and Stopping Communication Danger Signs, the Speaker-Listener Technique for Good Communication, Understanding How Issues and Hidden Issues Affect Relationships, Expectations, Dealing with Stress, Problem Solving Skills, Working Through Forgiveness, and Deepening Commitment to the Relationship.
Read to Me Program: This program is another method used to improve and maintain the bond between the offender-parent and the child. Age appropriate books are read by the offender and recorded. The recorded material is sent to the child so that the child can hear the parent read the book to him or her.
Parenting Program (female offenders): A parenting program is offered that helps to strengthen the relationship between the child and the incarcerated mother. Topics covered include Proper Discipline, Nutrition, Basic Care, Age Appropriate Activities, and Connecting with the Child.
Domestic Violence Program: The Domestic Violence Program offers alternatives and other strategies to break away from the abusive cycle to women who are or have been in an abusive situation, whether it is verbal, physical or mental abuse.
Wee Ones Nursery Program: The Wee Ones Nursery Program is offered at one of the female facilities. This program is a voluntary program for pregnant offenders who meet certain eligibility criteria. The intent of the program is to provide parenting education and to ensure quality time to strengthen the mother-infant bond during the initial months after the infant’s birth. Mothers and their babies have private rooms in one of the housing units. A small contingent of qualified nannies from the offender population also reside in the unit. The nannies assist the mothers with the care of the infants while the mothers attend classes, counseling appointments and/or similar obligations.
Family Spiritual Religious Service: The Department of Correction recognizes that in order to have a successful re-entry into the community an offender needs to maintain ties with members of his/her family. Also, it has been shown that offenders who have a firm and healthy belief system in place are more likely to have a successful re-entry. In order to enhance both community ties and the belief system of offenders, deserving offenders at some facilities are allowed to invite family members or friends to participate in a religious service program.