Message from John J. Clancy, Chairman and CEO
In 1979, as Director of Youth Services for a large urban county in Northern New Jersey, I conducted a needs-assessment to determine which programs were or were not working for our young people. This study included interviews with 600 inmates in our county jail.
Eighty-seven percent of those interviewed acknowledged excessive use of alcohol or drugs, but few if any had the opportunity to be treated for their addiction. At that time, I decided to create a program to help this population.
In 1984, the Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Corrections encouraged our company to pursue a plan to develop a rehabilitation program for the criminal justice population. This program would be large enough to have an impact on the growing prison population, would be cost effective (reducing the cost of housing prisoners), and would provide effective treatment services to reduce recidivism rates. Due to the innovative nature of our project, finding appropriate sites proved to be difficult and took over a decade to accomplish. However, by 1994 that task was behind us and we were well-prepared when the Governor urged the New Jersey Department of Corrections to find ways to reduce costs and recidivism.
We are able to build and operate programs as large as 2,000 beds, and offer a wide variety of specialized services to different criminal justice populations. Government agencies can contract with us on a per diem basis for an amount far less than is typically spent on facilities that provide fewer services. Additionally, the government does not have to raise capital to build more jail space.
Our commitment to reducing recidivism through treatment, training and educational programs is well-received both by the individuals we treat as well as the agencies we serve. Our special focus on treating the causes of criminal behavior works to drastically reduce government cost, both for initial and recidivist housing. The individuals who complete our programs are employable and prepared to be tax-paying citizens rather than tax burdens.
The exceptional employees of Community Education Centers are dedicated to our mission of providing effective treatment services. I am proud of their work. Our goal in the coming years is to make our programs accessible to all who are in need of assistance.
John J. Clancy
Chairman and CEO, Community Education Centers