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Reconsidering Lifer Reentry

Reconsidering Lifer Reentry

(p.205) 11 Reconsidering Lifer Reentry
After Life Imprisonment
Marieke Liem
NYU Press

Chapter eleven concludes by exploring the boundaries of two main theoretical models: Life-course theories and theories of cognitive transformation, in explaining success and failure among these lifers. The majority of the interviewed lifers, in a strict sense, desisted from crime, but still experienced great difficulty adjusting to life outside of prison. The chapter discusses ways in which the findings can be put into practical and policy recommendations, to better prepare this unique group of offenders for release to the community: By reclaiming self-efficacy in prison and through employment, by evidence-based programming, and by acknowledging the psychological aftermath of long-term incarceration. The chapter concludes with a discussion on reform in both prison and parole systems for lifers. Providing lifers a fair chance on the job market, adequate programming taking into account the prolonged period of confinement, and a sense of certainty in terms of reasons for recall enables them to start a life beyond bars.

Keywords:   desistance, life-course theory, cognitive transformation, lifers, policy, programming, recommendations, parole, prison

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