If your loved one is getting released from prison, you might be very excited to see them. You might also wonder how you can prepare for their release from prison. There are many things you can start doing now to prepare.
Your loved one will likely need financial help when they leave prison. It may take them time to get back on their feet or find work. They might need food, clothes and housing. You can help prepare for their release from prison by saving money to help buy these things.
Understand the Terms of Their Release
Your loved one may have parole conditions when they get out of prison. They must comply with these conditions or could go back to prison. Common parole conditions include the following:
- complying with drug or alcohol testing,
- attending treatment centers,
- attending recovery meetings,
- complying with electronic monitoring,
- following a curfew,
- following travel restrictions, and
- searching for a job.
Learn your loved one’s parole conditions. Help them stick to them. If you both understand the conditions, your loved one could have a better chance at success. And that means they could have less chance of going back to prison.
Plan Now for Their Future Needs
Your loved one will take time to reenter society. You can help them by preparing for the needs they will have. Some of those needs are material. They need clothing and a place to live. Other needs are complex like healthcare or education. You might be able to help more if you do some research first. You may want to look into the following for your loved one:
- counseling, and
Take the time to find options for your loved one. This can make their transition easier when they come home.
Start a Job Search
Many companies resist hiring people with criminal records. And so your loved one might have a hard time finding after prison. You can help your loved one by researching companies that do hire in this way. Some companies even actively seek to hire people with criminal records.
Some groups started the “ban the box” reform in 2004. This movement asks companies to remove the box on job applications that asks about someone’s criminal history. These days, you might be able to find several companies in your area that have “banned the box.”
There are also groups that help people with criminal convictions find work. Websites such as jailtojob.com and helpforfelons.org provide help and job listings. These sites can help you find work once your loved one is released from prison.
Talk to Friends and Family
Many people do not understand how prison affects people. Prepare your family for your loved one’s release from prison by telling them what you have learned about the prison system.
Explain how they can support your loved one after their release. Teach them which topics of conversation to avoid. You can also help them sort through their emotions before your loved one’s release. That can help family members prepare to be supportive once they return.
Returning home from prison is exciting, but it can also be hard. But if you prepare for it, you can help your loved one transition after their prison release. Try to anticipate their emotional and material needs. Make sure to prepare your loved one’s other friends and family as well.