Poverty, lack of education, low wages, and substance abuse are some of the contributing factors to criminal behavior. The average yearly booking for The Tennessee Penal Systems is 56,000. There are over 10,000 inmates housed within the Tennessee Department of Corrections and over 2,000 under supervision at Shelby County Department of Corrections. Often times, these individuals are released without the necessary tools and resources to navigate life outside of prison. The poor transition often leaves individuals repeating cycles of substance abuse, poverty, and unemployment.
Many that are released in Shelby County find themselves tangled in the Opioids Epidemic. In Shelby County 2020, there were 482 suspected overdose cases of which 70 were fatal in a thirty-four day period. Individuals being released from the penal and rehabilitation institutions need access to effective and evidence-based reentry programs that provide a written plan of action, wrap-around services, and resources to decrease the risk of re-entry and relapse. New Dawn Social Services exists to help those individuals become productive citizens and start afresh with the proper tools & resources to be successful.