Presentation Type

Presentation

Faculty Mentor’s Full Name

Tobin Miller Shearer

Faculty Mentor’s Department

African American Studies/History

Abstract

In the United States, Native Americans experience higher rates of incarceration and recidivism compared to other racial groups. Our project seeks to address the disparity of recidivism within the Native American community in Missoula, Montana. We compiled information about indigenous incarceration in Mexico and Australia to better understand the global issues facing indigenous people in criminal justice systems. We also spoke with nine different local organizations and individuals in Missoula that facilitate reentry and provide resources for the Native American community. During these conversations, we learned about the need to address the Native American reentry experience. By creating an accessible resource guide and website, we will both increase outreach to these individuals and promote greater awareness of the issue of high incarceration and recidivism rates within the Missoula Native American community. The main component of our project is a resource guide that provides a comprehensive list of resources for previously incarcerated Native Americans in Missoula. The resources we provide aim to cover the basic needs of individuals, including housing, employment, government assistance programs, food and clothing, addiction counseling, and resources specific to the Native American community. In addition to this resource guide, we will create a website with more detailed information and blog posts describing the extent of the challenges these individuals face during reentry, along with recommendations on how to navigate them. Given the recent COVID-19 outbreak, we have decided to evaluate the success of our project through feedback from community organizations sponsoring digital copies of our guide or organizations promoting our website to maintain social distancing guidelines. With this project, we have the chance to address a severe but often forgotten problem. We hope that this resource guide will be of great benefit to the Native American community experiencing reentry in Missoula.

Category

Interdisciplinary (GLI)

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Reentry Resources Missoula

In the United States, Native Americans experience higher rates of incarceration and recidivism compared to other racial groups. Our project seeks to address the disparity of recidivism within the Native American community in Missoula, Montana. We compiled information about indigenous incarceration in Mexico and Australia to better understand the global issues facing indigenous people in criminal justice systems. We also spoke with nine different local organizations and individuals in Missoula that facilitate reentry and provide resources for the Native American community. During these conversations, we learned about the need to address the Native American reentry experience. By creating an accessible resource guide and website, we will both increase outreach to these individuals and promote greater awareness of the issue of high incarceration and recidivism rates within the Missoula Native American community. The main component of our project is a resource guide that provides a comprehensive list of resources for previously incarcerated Native Americans in Missoula. The resources we provide aim to cover the basic needs of individuals, including housing, employment, government assistance programs, food and clothing, addiction counseling, and resources specific to the Native American community. In addition to this resource guide, we will create a website with more detailed information and blog posts describing the extent of the challenges these individuals face during reentry, along with recommendations on how to navigate them. Given the recent COVID-19 outbreak, we have decided to evaluate the success of our project through feedback from community organizations sponsoring digital copies of our guide or organizations promoting our website to maintain social distancing guidelines. With this project, we have the chance to address a severe but often forgotten problem. We hope that this resource guide will be of great benefit to the Native American community experiencing reentry in Missoula.