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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, April 26, 2016

United States Attorney’s Office Supports National Reentry Week

ROANOKE, VIRGINIA – Each year, more than 600,000 citizens return to our communities after serving time in federal and state prisons.  Another 11.4 million individuals cycle through local jails.  And nearly one in three Americans of working age have had some sort of encounter with the criminal justice system — mostly for relatively minor, non-violent offenses, and sometimes from decades in the past.  The long-term impact of a criminal record prevents many people from obtaining employment, housing, higher education, and credit — and these barriers affect returning individuals even if they have turned their lives around and are unlikely to reoffend. 

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Virginia, under the leadership of United States Attorney John P. Fishwick Jr., strongly supports reentry programs throughout the Western District of Virginia and beyond.

“Our office is committed to assisting non-violent offenders to become productive, law-abiding citizens,” United States Attorney John P. Fishwick Jr. said today. “We are proud to support community groups, and other agencies, who work every day to do this very important work.”

As part of National Reentry Week, U.S. Attorney Fishwick, along with members of the United States Attorney’s Office staff, will be meeting with community groups who work with reentry programs to discuss future partnership opportunities to help individuals return to communities in the Western District of Virginia.

In addition, the U.S. Attorney will continue a series of on-going meetings with Court and Probation officials regarding reentry programs aimed at helping former federal inmates returning to their communities.

Additionally, the U.S. Attorney’s Office continues to support the Veterans Treatment Court, a court designed to help veterans get back on their feet.

“Oftentimes, our veterans end up in the criminal justice system simply because they are coping with stress in the wrong way,” United States Attorney Fishwick said today. “Veterans Treatment Court provides an alternative to this downward spiral by promoting recovery and sobriety in a supportive environment. Our office is proud to support veterans by actively participating in Veterans Treatment Court.”

As part of National Reentry Week, leadership from across the Administration will be traveling around the country to make policy announcements in support of National Reentry Week. They will also be encouraging federal partners and grantees to work closely with stakeholders like federal defenders, legal aid providers and other partners across the country to increase the impact of these efforts.  National Reentry Week events are being planned in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.  U.S. Attorney’s Offices alone are hosting over 200 events and Bureau of Prisons facilities are holding over 370 events.

Updated April 26, 2016