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Minnesota Rehabilitation and Reinvestment Act

 
 

"[MRRA] smacks of common sense"

 -St. Cloud Times

 
 
 
 
 
One size does not fit all for individuals under the Department of Corrections' care. We need to change the way we think about corrections care.

To get the best correctional outcomes – safer prisons for individuals and staff, safer communities for Minnesota families, and successfully preparing people who are incarcerated to return to their community – we must tailor our approach to each individual's specific needs and risk.
 
The Minnesota Rehabilitation and Reinvestment Act (MRRA) would shift our focus from how much time people spend in prison, to how people spend their time. A person’s path to rejoining his or her community should begin on the day they start serving their sentence. The MRRA creates incentives for people in the custody of the Department of Corrections to participate in and make progress toward individualized goals they are deeply involved in setting when they start their time in prison. 




About the MRRA

The following whiteboard video provides an overview of the MRRA.

MRRA Expert Testimony

Watch the three videos below to hear experts provide testimony on the MRRA legislation.




The Minnesota Rehabilitation and Reinvestment Act


Four Main Components of the MRRA

MRRA IRP Icon Individualized Rehabilitation Plan (IRP)

Each person will participate in a robust assessment that is used to set concrete, personalized rehabilitation goals. The incarcerated person will work with a multi-disciplinary support team to set individualized goals everyone agrees on.

MRRA Earned Release Icon
Earned Release
Individuals can earn a reduction of their sentence by participating in the rehabilitation prescribed by their Individualized Rehabilitation Plan (IRP) and achieving the mutually-agreed upon goals. Examples include:
  • Substance abuse treatment
  • Mental health counseling
  • Vocational skills training
  • Education
MRRA Earned Supervision Icon
Earned Supervision Time Reduction
Once released, people can again earn a shortened period of community supervision, known as Supervision Abatement, by meeting the goals of a personalized plan. Examples of these tailored goals include:
  • Maintaining employment
  • Chemical health aftercare programming
  • Mental health follow-up counseling
  • Positive family and community reintegration preparation support services
MRRA Justice Icon


Justice Reinvestment Fund
Savings from the policy will be reinvested equally in four areas:

  • Victim support services
  • Strategic investments in crime prevention and intervention initiatives
  • Reinvestment in community-based corrections
  • State's General Fund

 


Potential Impact on Sentences

The graph below illustrates how the MRRA differs from the current system for an individual sentenced to 100 months.
 

Chart showing cost savings in an earned release model versus the current model



What This Means For The MN DOC

  • It's good for the safety of Minnesota communities: The MRRA gives people incentives to make progress and change their lives while in prison.

  • It's smart management: The MRRA incentivizes individuals with the goals of early release by laying out clear benchmarks for the work required toward growth and success. Without incentives, individuals have less direction and more opportunity for problems, which leads to less safe prisons.

    As these incentivized rehabilitation and release opportunities are implemented, fewer individuals will be under DOC care, allowing corrections staff to focus their time on caring for fewer people while providing more direction and support. The result is a safer, more cost-effective corrections system.

    Individuals who earn early release are able to participate in the state's economy and contribute to their family and community earlier and more constructively.

  • It's proven effective: Across the country, 38 states have a fairness policy that allows for earned early release. They have proven that earned release policies improve correctional outcomes while also saving the state millions of dollars.

    Missouri, with a similar policy, saw its prison population decline by 18% with no impact on recidivism rates.

    Maryland is currently on track to save $80 million during its first decade after implementing a similar policy.
 

Comparing the States

The map below shows states with earned release policies in place.
Map of the United States showing the thirty eight other states that have earned release policies
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