Providing opportunity for offender change is part of the Idaho Department of Correction’s core mission. Research undeniably supports that the best chance for an offender’s success, and ultimately the safety of our communities, lies in changing an offender’s criminal thinking and behavior patterns. Toward that end, we are committed to engaging offenders in evidence-based programs that will address the behaviors that resulted in their incarceration and teach them how they can change their lives by changing their thinking.
Every offender receives an extensive assessment through our Receiving and Diagnostics Unit (RDU) at either Idaho State Correctional Institution for men or Pocatello Women's Correctional Center for women. These assessments provide us with critical information that will help us define the best program and treatment options available based on the individual circumstances of the offender. Core programs are embedded in our ‘Pathways for Success’ curriculum, which are a series of 17 different identified tracks (curriculum) while someone is incarcerated, and there are 12 Pathway tracks for aftercare or community offenders. These tracks are designed to address the following:
- Criminogenic Factors
- Substance Abuse
- Sex Offender
- Individual Needs (healthcare, mental health, education and family reunification).
The IDOC strives to place offenders in programming that will benefit them and this is done at the appropriate time in their sentence. However, before an offender enters a program, there are many variables considered, including but not limited to, the offenders Tentative Parole Date (TPD), Parole Commission recommendations, program bed space availability, staff constraints, offender behavior, and offender eligibility based on assessment scores.
For more information please refer to Pathways Offered by Site and Core and Ancillary Program Descriptions
Parenting programs for male and female offenders have been identified for use at IDOC facilities. The Friends and Family handbook (link) is available to provide information to people in the community who are part of the offenders life. Visiting opportunities exist at each facility. Offenders are able to make phone calls to family or write letters. When there is a family crisis, the case manager or another designated staff person is available to assist the offender. Idaho Dept. of Correction is collaborating with other state agencies and community groups to make the re-entry and family reunification process work better for Idaho offenders.
Family & Friends Handbook
Idaho has developed a pre-release program which is offered at all releasing sites for offenders. It is our desire to have offenders prepared in the best possible way to return to their communities and families.
Most correctional programming has been written with the male offender in mind simply because of the sheer number of male offenders. IDOC has chosen to utilize curriculums for female offenders whenever possible that were written specifically for women. IDOC recognizes that the needs of the female offender are different than those of the male offender because of life circumstances. There is a wide use at the female facilities and in the probation and parole districts of grant funded programming to meet the gender responsive needs of female offenders. These grants provide material and facilitators who specifically address issues of female offenders in recovery from substance abuse and abuse. Some of the same curriculums used with male offenders are used but with events and examples germane to the female offender population.