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Reentry Fair Held At Northwest Correctional Complex

Friday, June 14, 2019 | 01:42pm
Offenders Participating In Reentry Fair @ Northwest Correctional Complex

TIPTONVILLE – Yesterday, six organizations from across Tennessee came to the Northwest Correctional Complex (NWCX) to offer resources and tools to offenders that have approximately two years or less left on their sentence and are getting ready for a life outside of the institution.

Larry Watts, NWCX Career Development Specialist, said the institution holds a reentry fair once a year.  “Many of the organizations here come several times throughout the year, but it’s good to have them all in one place at the same time so we can meet the needs of the offenders getting ready to go home,” said Watts.  “In addition to the reentry fair, we have a Reentry Discharge class, where we go over what to expect when they go on a job interview and how to prepare for it, along with other important information.  They also receive a Reentry Packet, which holds a lot of great material that provides lists of places where they can get housing, medical care, mental health services, as well as information about voting rights and the Federal Bonding Program.”

Jeff Tarver, NWCX Neil Rone Unit Manager, said offenders housed in his unit were attending the reentry fair to obtain the tools and information to help them transition into society.  “Before they return to society, we provide several different programs for them, such as job readiness, education, reentry programming, and they also work on community crews,” said Tarver.  “The community crews go out and do work such as repairing the schools, churches, courthouses and state parks in the area.  They get positive feedback from the public which gives them a positive mindset ­knowing they are doing good work to help the community.”

The organizations who attended the event were Project Return, Veterans Affairs, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development, TDOC Housing Coordinator, Rick Ingram Ministry and Men of Valor.  If you would like to get involved with reentry efforts at NWCX contact Reentry Specialist Dena Bottoms at Dena.S.Bottoms@tn.gov; or Larry Watts at Larry.A.Watts@tn.gov.