Marshall University Women Connect and STAR Community Justice Center presented Rehabilitation is the New Incarceration Wednesday in the Memorial Student Center.
The event informed the community about STAR, a community correctional facility in Scioto County, Ohio that provides a rehabilitation program for non-violent felony offenders in lieu of prison.
There was a panel and slideshow presentation by Matthew McClellan, director of STAR, James T. Holt, community justice director of STAR, Shannon Bishop, program director of STAR and Karly Estep, community justice specialist and former resident of STAR.
The presentation began with a word from Huntington Mayor Steve Williams.
Williams said MU Women Connect and STAR are encouraging for Huntington and Marshall.
McClellan began the presentation by giving an overview of STAR’s departments, programs and treatment models.
Holt explained the programs benefits to the community, concerning finances and recidivism rates.
Holt said the intention of community corrections is to give an alternative to prison.
“What Ohio has done, and is progressing in even further, is invest in these programs to give offenders educational and vocational opportunities, substance abuse and life skills training they will need when they get out,” Holt said.
Bishop discussed the gender specific behavior and strength based approaches to treatment.
Bishop also answered questions related to techniques and steps to recovery.
Estep wrapped up the presentation with the story of her personal experience as a resident of STAR.
“Everything was out of my system but I didn’t have a clear head,” Estep said. “I didn’t know who I was. The program taught me a lot about myself and my behavior.”
Hannah Harman can be contacted at [email protected]