“No-one is disposable.”
“No more victims.”
- COSA Program Mottoes
The purpose of the Brattleboro Restorative Reentry Program is to engage the community in both supporting people who are returning to the community after incarceration and holding people accountable to repairing harm done and engaging safely in the community.
Aspects that drive this program are:
- Increasing community safety
- Reducing recidivism
- Planning and supporting successful reintegration
Who is eligible?
The Restorative Reentry Program works with individuals referred by the Department of Corrections, who have been convicted of a felony, and are serving at least a six month sentence. Furthermore, participants are on probation, 18 years or older, and agree to explore and acknowledge the impact of their behavior on family, community, victim(s) and themselves.
A Reentry plan created by the incarcerated individual, the BCJC Director, and a Parole Officer will address:
- Barriers to reentry by linking the Core Member to resources for housing, employment, transportation, mental health, substance abuse and medical services and entitlement benefits
- Victim needs and community safety
- Expectations for future discussions of responsibility and accountability
Circles of Support and Accountability (COSA)
COSAs are the center of the Restorative Reentry Program. Comprised of 3 to 5 trained community volunteers, the COSA meets with participants ideally while still incarcerated and then once they have reentered the community. The goals of the COSA are:
- Support successful reintegration
- Enhance community safety
- Hold the core members accountable for fulfilling the Reentry Plan
- Support participants to understand and address who has been affected by past behavior and how
Specifically, the COSA assists the participant to meet the challenges of everyday living, such as doing laundry, transportation, budgeting, shopping, cooking, and preparing for a job interview. The COSA also works with the participant to identify triggers that might lead to harmful behavior. Finally, the COSA helps the participant determine how to make amends to those impacted by their past behavior.