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Kent Co. Sheriff’s Office partners with MIVIP

State of Michigan

Michigan Incarcerated Veteran’s In-Reach Program (MIVIP) provides veterans with post-incarceration resources

The mission of MIVIP is to reach veterans where they are and provide them with the resources needed to be successful post-incarceration. The program collaborated with 23 veterans within the Kent County jail to provide them with services like benefits, discharge paperwork, housing assistance, and transportation vouchers. Kent County Sheriff Michelle LaJoye-Young explains why she feels it’s important to help these veterans with their transition.

“These members of our community have served us and we have to serve them. We have to make sure that they’re supported as they rejoin our communities.”

The Kent County Sheriff’s Office was the first jail in the state to partner with MIVIP. LaJoye-Young says the program has proven to be successful.

“I think it’s really significant that we have seen 1% recidivism rate from veterans who have gone through this program.”

That’s compared to a rate of 45% of inmates who are released that end up back in jail.

“When we have a program that effectively reduces that to 1%, I think that is a good value for everybody involved.”

Due to Kent County’s success with the program, additional jails throughout the state have contacted MIVIP in the hopes of starting the program as well. MIVIP is currently utilizing a 3-year grant to expand its reach into those new jails. The Kent County Sheriff’s Office expects to continue the program as well.

Dave joined WGVU Public Media in November of 2023 after eighteen years as a Michigan Association of Broadcasters Emmy-nominated photojournalist and editor at Grand Rapids' WOOD TV8 and three years at WEYI TV25 in Flint, Michigan. As a General Assignment Reporter, Dave covers daily news and community events all over West Michigan.
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