The U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Justice Programs recently awarded Rutherford County over $600,000 in grant funds as part of the FY19 Second Chance Act Addressing the Needs of Incarcerated Parents and Their Minor Children.
This program was developed to “promote and expand services in detention and correctional facilities to incarcerated individuals and their minor children younger than age 18, and provide services to children of incarcerated parents by facilitating access to services that support their needs” according to the grant application.
“We are grateful to the Department of Justice for selecting Rutherford County,” said County Mayor Bill Ketron. “Our hope is that this program makes strides in the emotional development of children with incarcerated parents, while providing positive family engagement opportunities for those in our correctional and detention facilities.”
The County will receive $617,748 over a period of three years to implement the program. According to Finance Director Lisa Nolen, the value of the County's obligation is estimated at $87,793 and will be funded in-kind by providing meeting space and allocating 25 percent of the Work Center Programs Coordinator’s time to help operate this program.
The County will partner with agencies such as The Family Center, Volunteer Behavioral Health Systems, and Middle Tennessee State University’s Departments of Criminal Justice Administration and Social Work to provide the services and programs outlined in the grant. These services are ultimately designed to reduce and prevent crime, decrease recurring offenders, and promote transitional aids for the incarcerated once they are released.