Reentry Resource Center - New York

Reentry Net/NY
Serving People from Arrest to Reintegration
February 2010 Resource Updates and Highlights

You are receiving this newsletter because you are a member of the New York State Reentry Resource Center, a network of more than 2,000 advocates and direct service providers from all around the state. Each month, we bring you resource highlights, news, and policy updates from the online resource center.
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*Resource Highlights*

Advisory for Haitian Nationals Considering Applying for TPS - Past Arrests Could Bar TPS Eligibility and Lead to Detention and Deportation:  Haitian nationals may apply for what is called Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in order to avoid removal from the United States and to obtain employment authorization. However, Haitian nationals who have ever been arrested for a crime should know that past criminal dispositions may make them ineligible for TPS (and that future criminal dispositions may make them ineligible for re-registering for such benefits later). In addition, those who may be ineligible under these criminal bars should know that applying for TPS status may lead not only to a denial of TPS status, but to possible immigration detention and deportation. This advisory provides information about the types of past criminal dispositions or conduct that could lead to a finding of ineligibility for TPS. Click here to view the advisory. 

Article 78 Decision Finds DoE Denial of School Aid Application Based on Single Felony Conviction Arbitrary and Capricious: Petitioner's application to be a school aide in a New York City Public School was rejected by the DoE based on an 18 year old felony conviction, even with a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities. The Supreme Court of the State of New York ruled that the DoE denied the petitioner in an arbitrary and capricious fashion, and remanded the case to the DoE for a new decision that articulates its consideration of the eight factors that can legally be used to deny someone with a criminal record employment. Click here to read the decision

NYC Know Your Rights Project: An Innovative Pro Bono Response to the Lack of Counsel for Indigent Immigrant Detainees: This report by City Bar Justice Center's NYC Know Your Rights Project is based on data on 158 detainees counseled at Varick by pro bono volunteers between December 2008 and July 2009. The study finds that over one-third of immigrant detainees at the Varick Federal Detention Facility in New York City had reasonable claims for relief from removal. It also notes that of those who were granted bond, over 90% are unable to pay due to the high cost and stay in detention. Citing the high financial and moral costs of maintaining the current detention system for immigrants, this report recommends that legal counsel be provided for all detained immigrants who cannot afford private counsel. Click here to read the report.

An Explanation of Federal Medicaid and Disability Program Rules: This fact sheet offers an overview of Medicaid and SSI/SSDI programs and includes discussion of why individuals with mental illness may lose their benefits when they are incarcerated and what steps can be taken to ensure that those benefits are reinstated upon release. Click here to view the guide.


Remember to visit Past Resources of the Week for highlighted reports, toolkits, and training materials from the past year.


*Upcoming Events*

Occasional Series on Reentry Research: The Prisoner Reentry Institute presents its spring 2010 kick-off event; "Exploring the factors affecting the adoption and implementation of treatment delivery systems in the criminal justice system" led by Faye Taxman, Director of research program in evidence-based corrections and
treatment at George Mason University. Other discussants include Vincent N. Schiraldi, Commissioner of NYC Department of Probation and Michael P. Jacobson, President & Director of Vera Institute of Justice. The event will be held on February 19 at 9:00 AM.

Dogs In Prison/Paws that Heal: Puppies Behind Bars and Glen Wild Animal Rescue Dog Program: The City Bar Association presents a talk on Puppies Behind Bars and Glen Wild Animal Rescue Shelter Dog Program which work with incarcerated persons at prisons and juvenile justice facilities, and with dogs, to improve the lives of both. Learn more about these projects from their directors and from participants at the event which will be held on Wednesday February 24, at 6:00 PM. Click here to RSVP

Reducing Recidivism Through Work: The Center for Employment Opportunities and Accenture present a networking breakfast, expert panel discussion, and Q&A to discuss how the public and private sector can work together to create employment and skill-building opportunities for formerly incarcerated people. The event will feature Jane Oates, Assistant Secretary for Employment and Training Administration for the US Department of Labor and Cyrus Vance, Jr. Manhattan District Attorney as keynote speakers. The event will be held on February 25, at 8:30 AM.

Drop the Rock Advocacy Day: Drop The Rock's Advocacy will organize hundreds of New Yorkers to unite in Albany to call for criminal justice reforms including prison closures, full repeal of the Rockefeller Drug Laws, and reinvestment in our communities. Click here for more information, or to register for the event. For more information, please contact Caitlin Dunklee at

JusticeWorks Community’s Commemorative Event:  JusticeWorks Community is holding an event celebrating 18 years of public education, advocacy, and organizing and the closing of the organization. The event will feature the exhibit Interrupted Life: Incarcerated Mothers in the U.S. The event will be held at NYU Kimmel Center on March 16th at 6:00 PM. For more information or to RSVP, call 718.499.6704, ext.203.

Addiction 2010: Criminal Justice and Addiction Treatment: Beyond the Rockefeller Era: The Addiction Institute of New York's fifth annual conference will focus on the opportunities and challenges presented by the reforms of the Rockefeller Drug Laws and policies that treat substance abuse and dependence as a public health problem instead of a criminal justice issue. The event will feature Gabriel Sayegh, Director of the State Organizing and Policy Project at the Drug Policy Alliance, and will include various workshops discussing treatment, life skills, family and advocacy in post-Rockefeller Era. The event will be held on Friday, March 5 at 8:30 AM. Please see flyer for detailed information about the workshops and registration.

New York State Prisoner Justice Conference -  Connecting Regions, Issues, and Strategies: This conference organized by the Prisoner Justice Coalition will bring together a wide range of New York State organizations working on a diversity of prisoner justice issues to share ideas, information, energy, strategies, hope, and inspiration. There will be an overview of the issues that participating organizations are working on, time to strategize together to build a more effective movement for prisoner justice, and plans to continue collaborative work after the conference is over. The conference will be held on March 27th at 8:30 AM.

On The Front Lines: Building Skills for Reentry and Diversion: The New York City Discharge Planning Collaboration invite you to a free one-day training institute designed for discharge planners and other professionals working with currently and formerly incarcerated people. The goal of the institute is to impart practical skills to training participants that they can immediately put to use in improving outcomes for those they are working with. The Institute will provide participants with the opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge related to reentry, diversion, and service delivery through highly interactive workshops. There will be a networking lunch and participants will be able to participate in one workshop in the morning and one in the afternoon. The training will be held on Wednesday, March 31 at 8:30 PM. Click here to RSVP

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