Osborne’s work on behalf of the people impacted by the criminal legal system and their families is hard to summarize in a single message. We begin a new year with a renewed sense of purpose and share this set of accomplishments to celebrate the many ways our staff is making a difference.
Preventing and Reducing Incarceration
The Bronx Osborne Gun Accountability and Prevention (BOGAP) program has received funding to triple in size and serve 75 young adults in the year ahead. Nearly 40 current or past participants have achieved certificates through alternatives to violence training, and the program’s 3-month retention rate remains very high, at 98%.
Osborne’s Court Advocacy Services staff prevented over 1,000 years of incarceration for participants receiving lower sentences and service plans to address their needs and promote safety. The program has expanded into the Albany area with an office in Troy, and is now providing services in Westchester, Rensselaer, Greene, and Columbia counties.
The El Rio program continued to offer effective community-based outpatient treatment for substance use disorders. In 2023, 94% of participants referred to the program as an alternative to incarceration stayed in it for at least 30 days, as did 95% of non-intensive participants.
Providing Education and Opportunities to Incarcerated People
Ninety percent of participants in our FamilyWorks parenting course over the past 2.5 years say they have more confidence as a father as a result of the course; 95% plan to have more communication with their child(ren) following the course.
Our Family Focused Discharge Planning program provides reentry services to individuals who are currently or formerly incarcerated and their families. Classes help participants gain insights into family and social dynamics, and we provide mental health, academic, and employment resources, along with screening and referrals during reentry. More than 250 incarcerated people and their families at four facilities – Wende, Queensboro, Albion, and Green Haven – received this support last year.
Women on Rikers continue to receive services from Osborne, through our Visiting and Family Assistance program at the Rose M. Singer Center. We conducted well over 500 individual and 160 community counseling sessions with incarcerated and recently released women.
Osborne staff provided cognitive behavioral therapy, employment readiness, conflict avoidance, and other critical services for 25,000 people detained on Rikers over the last 10 years before City budget cuts forced closure of most of our jail-based services in June.
Ensuring Successful Reentry
Findings from an initial assessment of our Kinship Reentry Housing program by Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago show it is serving New Yorkers who are racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse. A key sign of its success: 83% of graduates still had stable housing in the community one year after release.
Our Workforce Development Program and Osborne Social Ventures graduated a total of over 375 people in 2023, and nearly 325 people were placed in jobs with average starting wages of $18.05 to $19.27 between the two programs.
Osborne’s Marcus Garvey Supportive Housing program, which serves a total of 52 residents, facilitated a total of over 270 group sessions in collaboration with 13 organizations on topics like elder fraud, financial literacy, and current events. The Brownsville, Brooklyn, program has now been open for over a year and a half, and the leases of all residents, who pay on a sliding scale, have been renewed.
Nearly 250 people were released from state prisons with a transitional plan specifically designed for their needs thanks to our ReentryWorks program.
Supporting Young People and Helping Families Thrive
A total of over 53,000 family members made visits to Osborne’s 19 prison-based Visitor Hospitality Centers last year. At these centers, Osborne staff offer a warm welcome, orientation, and information on services to arriving families, who have often traveled long distances to see their incarcerated loved ones.
More than 50 women impacted by incarceration participated in Osborne’s Women with a Plan program, receiving support and case management, including more than 150 referrals for outside services such as housing, benefits counseling, and behavioral health support.
More than 200 young people of all ages in Brooklyn, Buffalo, and Newburgh gained advocacy skills, found welcoming support, and built a community of peers throughout the school year and during summer months, through Youth Experience Success! and our Youth Action Council. Activities this year included recording podcasts, earning drone pilot licenses, an annual trip to Albany to meet with legislators, and classes in CPR, Narcan training, conflict resolution, and meditation.
Young adults in the South Bronx who are looking to make positive changes found support through Osborne’s Works Plus and NeOn Works programs. More than 300 young people enrolled in these programs last year, receiving job readiness training, educational and vocational referrals, and workshops with credible messengers who share similar experiences.
Welcoming LGBTQIA+ and TGNCNB People
Our newly launched LGBTQIA+ Case Management program quickly met its enrollment goal, serving people who identify as Transgender/Gender Non-Conforming/Non-Binary who have experienced incarceration or are at risk for it. Osborne staff has helped participants with immigration, mental health, name/gender marker changes, primary care, housing, benefits, education, employment, and legal support.
Safeguarding Children During Parental Arrest
Osborne’s years-long advocacy contributed to the adoption of a new state-level accreditation standard to ensure that children, physically present or not, are safeguarded when a parent or guardian is arrested. All accredited law enforcement agencies in New York State must have written guidelines and provide training to comply with the new standard, which went into effect on June 15, 2023.