Today's Law As Amended


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AB-562 Prisons: rehabilitation programs.(2019-2020)



As Amends the Law Today


SECTION 1.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) According to a December 6, 2017, report by the Legislative Analyst’s Office entitled, “Improving In-Prison Rehabilitation Programs,” California state prisons house nearly 130,000 inmates.
(b) While incarcerated in prison, inmates often participate in various rehabilitation programs that seek to improve the likelihood that inmates will lead a productive, crime-free life upon release from prison by addressing the underlying factors that led to their criminal activity.
(c) The Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation offers inmates various rehabilitation programs while they are in prison, including education and substance use disorder treatment programs. The primary goal of those programs is to reduce recidivism—the number of inmates who reoffend after they are released from prison.
(d) Various studies show that when those programs are well designed and implemented effectively, they can reduce the number of inmates who recidivate and that the resulting savings can more than offset the costs of the programs.
(e) The department defines recidivism as being convicted of a subsequent crime within three years of release from prison. Of the 36,000 inmates released in the years 2012–13, the number of inmates who recidivated was 16,500, or 46 percent.
(f) Upon admission to prison, the department assesses an inmate’s rehabilitative needs and assigns the inmate to relevant rehabilitation programs.
(g) As of June 30, 2017, 98 percent of the inmate population received a rehabilitation risk assessment. Of those who received an assessment, roughly one-half had a moderate or high risk of recidivating.
(h) In the years 2015–16, almost one-half of inmates were released without receiving rehabilitation programs for which they had an assessed need.

SEC. 2.

 Section 2069 is added to the Penal Code, to read:

2069.
 (a) The Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation shall improve performance measures in order to conduct regular oversight of rehabilitation programs operated in state prisons.
(b) The department’s performance measures regarding rehabilitation programs operated in state prisons shall include all of the following information:
(1) The percentage of inmates with unmet rehabilitation needs nearing release from prison.
(2) Participation rates for state-funded rehabilitation programs.
(3) The length of time an inmate participated in a rehabilitation program before being released from prison.
(4) The length of time required for an inmate in a rehabilitation program to meet specified benchmarks.
(5) The number of inmates on the waiting list for each rehabilitation program, and the amount of time inmates are on the waiting list before gaining entry to the program.

SEC. 3.

 Section 2070 is added to the Penal Code, to read:

2070.
 (a) The Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation shall offer an evidence-based cognitive behavioral therapy program at each prison.
(b) The department shall require an inmate identified by the department as having a high risk of recidivism and high need for rehabilitation services to participate in a cognitive behavioral therapy program before the inmate is released from prison.