Commissioner: Gregory C. Dozier

Director of Public Affairs: Joan Heath

Program Completers in Georgia’s Prisons Impacts Data

FORSYTH, Ga. – The Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) recently noted a significant decrease in recidivism rates due to the number of programs and services now available to offenders. Recent fiscal year 2015 data indicates that the three-year felony reconviction rates of program completers versus the general population has had a substantial impact.

In comparison to fiscal year 2014, recidivism rates for offenders obtaining a GED or vocational certification decreased for a combined total of more than 17 percent in fiscal year 2015. Rates for offenders enrolled in cognitive and substance abuse treatment programs decreased for a combined total of more than six percent compared to fiscal year 2014.

“Criminal Justice Reform is a vital part of our mission at the GDC and recent reports are indicative of the significant impact that is taking place within our state,” said Commissioner Gregory C. Dozier. “When offenders are prepared to reenter society with tools that will allow them to function through basic life skills, as well as obtaining a job, the chances of them returning to prison are greatly reduced.”

For many years, the agency’s Inmate Services Division has had a history of providing a variety of programs and services to assist offenders with their transition into the community. However, over the past few years, there has been significant growth in educational, vocational, cognitive, substance abuse, counseling, chaplaincy, and transitional opportunities for the offenders more readily available, as well as training and interventions provided by Care and Treatment staff.

By collaborating with outside agencies, such as Department of Driver Services (DDS), the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG), and others who have aided the GDC in reducing barriers experienced by offenders once they are released, additional opportunities are now available to support offender reentry.

About the Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC)

The Georgia Department of Corrections (GDC) has one of the largest prison systems in the U.S. and is responsible for supervising nearly 52,000 state prisoners. It is the largest law enforcement agency in the state with approximately 10,500 employees. For more information on the GDC, call 478-992-5247 or visit