Overcoming Obstacles to Securing Employment and Housing Post-Incarceration

Donald G. Evans & Jaime Tilston

Individuals released from confinement face a number of reintegration challenges that, when overcome, increase community safety significantly. Research literature shows that stable employment, for many reasons, has a wide range of crime prevention indicators. Finding suitable employment and affordable housing, away from high crime neighborhoods, is key for successful community transition. In our work at the Crossroads Day Reporting Centre, we support clients in overcoming these barriers. We work with clients to simultaneously secure those primary needs while also addressing relapse prevention needs, mental health concerns, academic upgrading and general counselling.

Donald G. Evans

Donald (BA, BSW) is a Senior Fellow at the Canadian Training Institute and a past President of its Board of Directors. Donald was Chair of the Citizen’s Advisory Committee for the Toronto Downtown Parole Office for over 10 years. He is the former Assistant Deputy Minister of Policing Services in Ontario and a former lecturer in penology and policing at Woodsworth College, University of Toronto, He is a Past President of the Ontario Probation Officers Association, the American Probation and Parole Association and the International Community Corrections Association. He is currently the Executive Editor of the Journal of Community Corrections and a contributing editor of Executive Exchange the newsletter of the National Association of Probation Executives. Along with Edward E Rhine he edited the collection of ICCA proceedings for 2005-06 Research into Practice: Bridging the Gap in Community Corrections, ACA 2009. Don has edited the Defeating Recidivism: Keys to Making It Happen published by the American Correctional Association in 2012. He collaborated with Sandi L. Humphrey in the writing of the Guide to Positive Staff-Board Relations for not-for-Profit Organizations published by the Canadian Association Executives 2016. He has received numerous awards for his achievements in corrections. He remains an active member of numerous associations including ACA, APPA, ICCA, NAPE, ICPA and CEP. Donald has served on a number of Boards of Directors of non-profit agencies including the John Howard Society of Toronto; the John Howard Society of Ontario, St. Leonard’s Society of Canada and the St. Leonard’s Society of Toronto.

Jaime Tilston

Jaime (MA, BA) is the Gender Responsive Case Manager at the John Howard Society of Toronto. Jaime has been working for the past two years to empower female parolees in their successful community reintegration. She works to identify the dynamic needs of female offenders based on their familial role, criminal patterns and complex trauma history. Jaime helps clients in obtaining post-incarceration employment, appropriate housing, as well as meeting other needs such as life skill development, assistance with addiction, mental health, and general counselling. Prior to that Jaime worked in prisons throughout California state bringing nonviolence education programming to inmates with life sentences. Jaime has a Master’s Degree in Peace, Development, Security and International Conflict Transformation from Innsbruck, Austria and an Advanced Master’s Certificate in Peace and Conflict Studies from the European Peace University. Within her studies Jaime performed an analysis of the U.S. system of corrections in writing her thesis on the impact of nonviolence education in reducing recidivism rates. Jaime has also led culturally sensitive workshops and trainings on domestic violence in West Africa.

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