Date of Award

9-17-2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Criminology

First Advisor

Erika Davis-Frenzel, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Rosemary L. Gido, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Kathleen J. Hanrahan, Ph.D.

Fourth Advisor

James B. Wells, Ph.D.

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to add to the criminological research on the topic of reentry. This study was conducted to examine the process of reintegration from female ex-offenders' perspectives as they move through reintegration programming. Specifically, this study was concerned with the barriers women face as they return to society and whether or not reentry programming makes them feel as though they are successfully prepared to return to society. To address the research questions, a qualitative design implementing one-on- one interviews to question female ex-offenders was utilized. Respondents for this study were asked to participate by responding to a posted flyer and through recruitment during activity conducted during observation periods at an organization providing reentry services located in South Central Pennsylvania. Respondents also answered a series of questions through a two-week period of individual journaling. These questions primarily addressed the theoretical components of the study. Barriers to obtaining employment, adjustment issues, and issues related to substance abuse and addiction were primary concerns for this sample of returning female ex-offenders. The need for further research surrounding gender-specific issues and needs, treatment, and criminal justice policies should be addressed.

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