Adult participants in ESF-funded reintegration programmes more likely to have found employment; no improvement in the position of juveniles
Adult participants in modules funded by the European Social Fund (ESF) that aim to enlarge labour market opportunities of both detainees and juvenile detainees are more likely to be employed after imprisonment than detainees who did not participate. Participating juveniles are not in a better position after imprisonment than non-participants. This is shown by the evaluation conducted by the Research and Documentation Centre (WODC). The ESF programme consists of various modules focused on vocational training, (post-)secondary and general education, life and work skills training and assistance in the job search process and (guidance by) work in prison.
There are no differences between participants in ESF-funded modules and non-participants in
the probability to be in education, have a basic level education qualification and recidivism after detention. However, adult ESF-participants are more likely to work after release than non-participants, particularly if they followed modules that focus on education or general life skills.
No improvement in the position of juvenile detainees
Juvenile prisoners can also participate in the activities funded by the ESF-programme. There are no differences found between participants and non-participants in the probability to be in education, have a basic level education, work or recidivism after detention.
Greater focus on education and general life skills
In line with previous research, results shows that adult ESF-participants who only followed work in prison-modules are not more likely to work after release than non-participants. However, these are the modules that adult ESF participants currently spend the most time on. The researchers argue that in the future, it would be better to focus more on education and life and work skills training in both adult and juvenile prisons. This may might improve reintegration outcomes.