By CN Staff
NASHVILLE, Tenn.—The Tennessee Department of Correction has released positive news surrounding public safety in the state. The latest data shows the recidivism rate for offenders released from TDOC facilities is now at its lowest level in more than a decade. For the first time, the recidivism rate has dropped below 30% and is currently at 29.6% for individuals released from a state prison in 2019. TDOC measures recidivism by the criminal acts that result in re-arrest, re-conviction, or a return to prison within a three-year period after release.
Commissioner Frank Strada said the data demonstrates that TDOC is significantly bending the curve and reducing recidivism through the use of evidence-based programming, a validated risk and needs assessment tool, and criminal justice reforms that promote public safety.
“The data is proof that what we are doing in Tennessee is working. We are seeing the results of the action taken by Governor Bill Lee, the General Assembly, and TDOC employees who work to prepare offenders for success on the day they enter our custody,” Strada said. “Further, overall changes in the Department of Correction, such as the standardization of offender supervision in the community and the use of graduated sanctions, reaffirms that you can be both tough on crime and smart on crime and get better public safety outcomes.”
Commissioner Strada also credited TDOC’s valuable partnerships with private, nonprofit, and community organizations with helping to make a real difference in the lives of returning citizens by providing support services across the state.