Blog Posts

Nancy Cotterill co-founded 2nd Chance Indiana (as UNITE INDY) in late 2016. She was editor and later publisher of Indianapolis Business Journal, and then created a not-for-profit online news outlet for the four million wheelchair users in the U.S. As an award-winning journalist, Nancy uses her talents to promote efforts to fight the causes of overall poverty throughout our area while working to spread the specific message that second chance employment is lowering recidivism, changing lives, and raising families out of poverty.

January 22, 2024

When it comes to reentry, housing can be one of the most difficult needs to be met. Reentrants often leave the highly structured environment of prison or jail with no preparation or place to live, yet, study after study shows that unstable or nonexistent housing heightens the risk of being incarcerated again and about 10% become homeless on day one after release.

June 21, 2023

A few years ago, I put together a recidivism map that showed re-incarceration rates in Indiana counties were between 30 and 50 percent, using source data from the Indiana Department of Correction (IDOC). But after learning that IDOC only counts Indiana prison inmates who are re-incarcerated in an Indiana prison, it became obvious why the recidivism figures here were drastically lower than rates across the country.

May 8, 2023

Across the United States, approximately 1.22 million people are incarcerated in state and federal facilities. This does not include the 3000+ county jails in the U.S. that have begun to hold longer-term prisoners as well. About a half million reentrants are released every year. In Marion County, Indiana alone, annual estimated releases are about 12,000. If recidivism is the yardstick we use to measure our ability to help reentrants create a new future, it is an uncertain one.

March 21, 2023

Click here for a full size version of the graphic.When you hear that 75 percent of the juveniles in prison come from fatherless homes, an alarm goes off. There is absolutely a tie between the lack of a father in the home and kids who get sent to prison. Here in Indianapolis, Fathers & Families Center offers a few more statistics: With a father in the home, a child is 75 percent less likely to have a teen birth, and 80 percent less likely to spend time in jail. People who think fathers are irrelevant just have their heads in the sand.

February 24, 2020

Taxpayers pay millions to keep lawbreakers off the street, yet when the courts decide these folks are ready to be released, they often find themselves in situations that tend to send them right back behind bars. Recidivism serves no one, and while repeat criminals must be incarcerated, too many go back to prison due to technical violations not crimes. In the picture, left, Lena Hackett, CEO of Community Solutions is explaining a graph that breaks down into percentages those who returned to jail or prison for various reasons. The smaller blue portions of the bars represent the recidivism percentage of those who committed a new crime and were reincarcerated. But that much larger gold portion represents those who are returned to prison because they have violated technicalities of their release as set out by a judge...

Contact Information

2nd Chance Indiana
241 West 38th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46208


Our Mission

Our mission is to reduce recidivism and rebuild lives through the dignity of work.