Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/232830
Authors: 
Bollinger, Christopher R.
Yelowitz, Aaron
Year of Publication: 
2021
Series/Report no.: 
IZA Discussion Papers No. 14078
Abstract: 
As many as two-thirds of newly-released inmates will be arrested for a new offense within three years. This study evaluates the impact of job assistance on recidivism rates among ex-offenders. The job assistance program, run though the private company America Works, uses a network of employers to place clients. Ex-offenders were randomly assigned to intensive job assistance (treatment group) or the standard program (control group). The intensive program is meant to improve average work readiness for ex-offenders. It reduces the likelihood of subsequent arrest among non-violent ex-offenders, but has little effect on violent ex-offenders. The re-arrest rate for non-violent ex-offenders in the treatment group was 19 percentage points lower than those in the control group. The re-arrest rate for violent ex-offenders in the treatment group was indistinguishable from those in the control group. We estimate benefits from intensive job assistance from averted crimes and find that they outweigh the $5,000 up-front cost for non-violent ex-offenders.
Subjects: 
criminal recidivism
rapid workforce attachment
JEL: 
J48
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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