Rikers Island Discharge Enhancement (RIDE) Program
Evaluations & Outcomes
|Fisher, Mellow, & Saunders, 2008|
The Rikers Island Discharge Enhancement (RIDE) program was created in 2004 to assist people returning to the five boroughs of New York City from the Rikers Island jail. Participants had to have volunteered for the program and be sentenced to a term of incarceration at Rikers Island. The RIDE program included an in-jail component during which participants worked with one of several nonprofit community-based service providers as well as 90 days of post-release service provision. Each participant in the RIDE program was assigned to a case manager who tracked their progress, provided guidance and support, and helped connect them to the services they needed. During the study period, there were three service providers working with participants before and after their release: the Osborne Association, Samaritan Village, and the Women’s Prison Association. Though these organizations provided a full range of services to inmates, they primarily focused on employment, substance abuse, and reentry issues specific to women.
Recommendations for Practice
Suggestions for Future Research
- Given that only one study of RIDE was identified that met the What Works in Reentry Clearinghouse’s criteria for rigor, additional research is needed to determine the effects of participation in RIDE on post-release outcomes.
- To minimize the potential for selection bias, future research should attempt to evaluate this program through randomized control trials, if possible.
- Future evaluations should also examine the range and quality of the services that the treatment group actually received to better understand if the program was implemented successfully.