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Philly Takes New Efforts to Halt Recidivism

New City Agency to Oversee Philly’s ‘Fragmented’ Reentry for Returning Citizens

Avi Wolfman-Arent - August 19, 2019

"Philadelphia thinks its new Office of Reentry Partnerships will fix a “fragmented” approach to helping those returning from prison or jail.

The new office, unveiled Monday, will oversee the patchwork of government agencies and nonprofits that work with the estimated 25,000 formerly incarcerated people who return to Philadelphia each year.

“This new office represents a renewed commitment by my administration to take a hard look at what we can do differently to better support the formerly incarcerated,” Mayor Jim Kenney said in a statement.

It will consolidate employees who worked in the Office of Criminal Justice and the Mayor’s Office of Re-Integration Services.

“We’ve got an infrastructure that is really good,” said Bianca Van Heydoorn, whom Kenney appointed as the first senior director of the Office of Reentry Partnerships. “We’ve got an opportunity to improve on that. And who wouldn’t want to do that?”"

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