An Integrated Perspective on the Collateral Consequences of Criminal Convictions and Reentry Issues Faced by Formerly Incarcerated Individuals
69 Pages Posted: 18 Sep 2006
This article examines the emergent focus on the collateral consequences of criminal convictions and the reentry of formerly incarcerated individuals. Specifically, the article details the ways in which legal scholars, policy analysts, elected officials, legal services organizations and community based organizations have begun to address these components of the criminal justice system.
The article argues that these various groups have compartmentalized collateral consequences and reentry by focusing almost exclusively on one component to the exclusion of the other. In doing so, they have narrowed the lens through which to view these components, and have therefore missed opportunities to develop integrated perspectives that accurately reflect the scope of the interconnected issues that flow from these components. These constrained perspectives have, in turn, influenced the ways in which practitioners, trial and appellate courts, and legislatures have addressed these issues in their respective contexts.
After offering a couple of reasons for these constrained perspectives, the article proposes that these constituencies adopt an integrated perspective of collateral consequences and reentry. The article analogizes this integrated perspective to the holistic movement that has flourished in criminal defense and civil legal services circles over the past couple of decades. The article concludes by offering numerous benefits of adopting an integrative perspective, but also raises other difficult legal and logistical questions embedded in the integrative perspective.
Keywords: collateral consequences, felon reentry
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