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Examining the effects of a transitional employment program for formerly incarcerated people on employment and recidivism: a randomized controlled trial during COVID-19

NCJ Number
Journal of Experimental Criminology Volume: 29 Dated: 2023
Date Published

This article examines the efficacy of a transitional employment program at improving employment and recidivism outcomes among formerly incarcerated individuals.


This article presents a study that examined the effectiveness of a transitional employment program (TEP), delivered with cognitive behavioral interventions (CBIs), at improving employment and recidivism outcomes among residents returning to Palm Beach County, Florida, from incarceration. The authors used a randomized controlled trial with an intent-to-treat approach to examine the effects of the TEP on employment and recidivism outcomes. Bivariate statistics examined treatment group status on the dependent variables. Separate logistic regressions models then examined the effects of programmatic hours and employment on recidivism outcomes. Results suggested that participation in the TEP increased employment but did not reduce recidivism. Logistic regression results, however, showed that obtaining employment significantly reduced the odds of recidivating. Participation in the TEP itself did not reduce recidivism; however, certain programmatic aspects appeared to be worthy of consideration moving forward, including improving implementation fidelity, increasing CBI buy-in, and assisting formerly incarcerated people obtain employment. Publisher Abstract Provided

Date Published: January 1, 2023