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For more than 20 years, federal inmates have completed their prison time and moved to halfway houses, like the Oriana halfway house in Akron. These men and women have stayed up to a year to rehabilitate and transition into the real world, finding jobs in the city.
Now, effective yesterday, the Federal Bureau of Prisons has ended its contract with Oriana House, after the Trump administration chose to cut millions of dollars from the bureau. The loss of funding has affected dozens of halfway house programs across the country, leaving some to close completely. (A thorough dive into the story from Cleveland.com's Eric Heisig can be found here.
The seven federal inmates currently at Oriana House in Akron will be moved to other facilities in Cleveland, like Oriana's halfway house on East 55th, and in Youngstown. For some, living in a new location will hinder their ability to show up for current jobs in Akron.
Other federal cuts include reducing the amount of time inmates have at halfway homes from six months to a year, to 30 to 60 days. Meaning more time behind bars and less in rehabilitation, a critical part of not re-offending, critics say.
While Oriana House and Ohio senators and representatives have attempted to thwart the Akron cuts, the Federal Bureau of Prisons has not been responsive to date.