Exonerees face the formidable task of reinventing their lives and identities when they walk out of prison. Many of them have lived decades within the rigid confines of prison. Navigating the intense transition back into the “outside world” can be distressing and disorienting.
The Innocence Project aims to meet the varied and individualized needs of each of our clients upon their release. Our Social Work department reaches out to exonerees before they have even left prison to assess what type of support they will need to restore their lives. Needs can fall on a broad spectrum, from locating birth certificates and social security numbers to finding family members, securing housing or arranging for critical medical and psychological treatment.
To reinforce a network of support, the Social Work team organizes workshops, social events and other opportunities for exonerees to exchange stories about their experiences.