CoreCivic is partnering with Geographic Solutions to pilot the Virtual OneStop Reentry Employment Opportunities software system, also known as VOS REO, on new laptops at CoreCivic's Jenkins Correctional Center in Millen, Georgia. VOS REO is a secure system that gives incarcerated individuals the ability to send their resume to prospective employers and apply for jobs ahead of release. This system helps close the time gap between incarceration and employment, with the goal of reducing recidivism.
A 2022 study by the Bureau of Justice Statistics finds that approximately 60 percent of formerly incarcerated individuals struggle with joblessness. The VOS REO system works to curb unemployment by giving job-ready individuals the resources to not only apply for jobs, but learn about the current labor market and what jobs are in demand. VOS REO also functions to pair residents with career opportunities based on personal interests, skills and values, hot job markets, salary expectations and more.
The National Career Development Association (NCDA) reports that when justice-involved individuals land a long-term job, they often experience a higher sense of self-esteem and have a more stable lifestyle away from crime. Furthermore, NCDA reports that communities at large benefit from these individuals' career success through lower poverty rates, more income taxes collected, and stronger family units.
"VOS REO allows residents to search for jobs prior to being released and actually make connections with employers and find jobs within their respective communities," said Matt Moore, senior director of Reentry Services at CoreCivic.
The VOS REO software includes several levels of security and does not allow residents to access certain websites, email or direct messaging apps.
"All of the communication the user does is kept within the software system—there's not a way for residents to get outside of the virtual boundaries that are in place," said Moore.
CoreCivic's Jenkins facility will be piloting VOS REO until the fall of 2023. If it proves to be a successful resource for residents, the software will be expanded to more CoreCivic facilities.