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Prison Reform Group Sheds Light On Need For State Funded Halfway Houses

Advocates say the case of a man trying to secure a place to live after being released from prison sheds light on the need for the state to fund halfway houses. Thomas Kokoraleis served decades in prison for murder and was recently released. A transitional housing facility in Aurora offered to take him in, leading to protests from residents who say they’re worried about public safety. Jennifer Vollen-Katz with the nonpartisan prison reform group the John Howard Association says state-funded halfway houses, and so-called “step down” programs, could help in a situation like this one. Vollen-Katz says Illinois no longer funds such programs.

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Advocates say the case of a man trying to secure a place to live after being released from prison sheds light on the need for the state to fund halfway houses. Thomas Kokoraleis (KO-KO-rah-liss) served decades in prison for murder and was recently released. A transitional housing facility in Aurora offered to take him in, leading to protests from residents who say they’re worried about public safety. Jennifer Vollen-Katz with the nonpartisan prison reform group the John Howard Association says state-funded halfway houses, and so-called “step down” programs, could help in a situation like this one. Vollen-Katz says Illinois no longer funds such programs.

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