Corrections – Workforce Partnership & Prison to Employment Initiative


The Corrections-Workforce Partnership Agreement is intended to strengthen linkages between the state workforce and corrections systems in order to improve the process by which the formerly incarcerated and justice-involved individuals reenter society and the labor force. The partnership’s goal is to improve labor market outcomes for justice-involved individuals by creating a systemic and ongoing partnership between rehabilitative programs within California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) and the state workforce system by bringing CDCR under the policy umbrella of the State Workforce Plan.

The Corrections-Workforce Partnership: Background

California releases approximately 40,000 people from the state prison system each year, many of whom have received in-prison job-training services such as Career Technical Education (CTE) training or have participated in programs operated by the California Prison Industry Authority (CalPIA). Concurrently, California manages federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) funds through its State Plan, developed by the California Workforce Development Board (CWDB) and implemented by local workforce development boards across the state.

As part of efforts to improve California’s criminal and juvenile justice systems and reduce recidivism through increased rehabilitation, the CWDB, CDCR, and CalPIA finalized a partnership agreement which has been included in the state’s 2020-2023 Unified Strategic Workforce Development Plan.

The Corrections-Workforce partnership agreement links education, job training, and work experience in prison to post-release jobs by fostering a system of coordinated service delivery to a population that faces a variety of barriers. It serves as a blueprint for building local and regional partnerships to improve labor market outcomes and reduce recidivism.

The partnership agreement informs policies specific to California’s 15 Regional Planning Units, 45 Local Workforce Development Boards, and 200 contracted America’s Job Centers of California (AJCCs), and how they can serve the state’s formerly incarcerated and justice-involved population.

Regional and Local Planning Guidance
Prison to Employment Grant Initiative

In 2018, the California legislature appropriated state general funds for the Prison to Employment Initiative (P2E) to be administered by the California Workforce Development Board (CWDB). Workforce service providers across California use P2E funds for the integration of workforce, reentry services, and supportive services, paving a pathway towards employment and away from recidivism for the formerly incarcerated and justice-involved population. 

As of April 2022, P2E funds have been used to serve over 5,730 formerly-incarcerated and justice-involved individuals statewide.

In the summer of 2022, CWDB announced the availability of another round of implementation to continue to serve the formerly incarcerated and other justice-involved individuals in California by providing training, education & career opportunities and supportive services to ensure individuals receive the necessary resources & supports for success in attaining permanent employment.

Prison to Employment (P2E) 2.0 Initiative Award Announcement

The California Workforce Development Board is pleased to announce the awards for the Prison to Employment (P2E) 2.0 initiative, funded by the California State general funds.

See See full announcement here

Prison to Employment Interim Report

The interim report for Evaluation of Prison to Employment Initiative (Round One) is available at the following link: Prison to Employment Interim Report.

2022 Prison to Employment Summit


Secretary of the California Labor & Workforce Development Agency, Natalie Palugyai’s opening remarks at the 2022 Prison to Employment Summit.

On Tuesday, March 1, 2022 the California Workforce Development Board hosted the Prison to Employment Summit. The digital summit brought together a diverse group of practitioners from across California, including representatives of local workforce development boards, state agencies, and community partners, who shared and discussed lessons learned from the first round of state investment in serving the formerly incarcerated Justice Involved population.

Prison to Employment Summit Page

Corrections-Workforce Library

Data Sources for Corrections-Workforce Plans

As part of the Corrections-Workforce Partnership and Prison to Employment Initiative, Regional Planning Units are being asked to include information about the size and demographics of the formerly incarcerated and justice involved populations in their region. The data sources below provide a useful baseline for better understanding the make-up of these populations at the state, region, and county levels.

Data Source Publishing Agency Description
BSCC Performance Metrics for Community Corrections California Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) Interactive dashboard displaying county and region-level data on crime, arrest, and incarceration rates
California County Probation Dashboard Chief Probation Officers of California (CPOC) Interactive dashboard displaying up-to-date county-level Probation population data
CDCR Outcome Evaluation Report California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Annual report presenting various data on individuals released from California State Prisons (e.g. recidivism rate by county of release)
CDCR Data Points Report California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Report presenting various state prison data including admissions and releases by county
DOJ Interactive Arrests Map* California Department of Justice (DOJ) Interactive map displaying county-level arrest data that can be disaggregated by age, race/ethnicity, gender, and arresting agency

*Arrests are a distinct metric from justice-involved population counts and the two datasets do not necessarily correlate to one another; however this data can be used to approximate demographic breakdowns if RPUs are unable to obtain more detailed demographic data from their corrections partners.


Corrections-Workforce Research Library

The CWDB has compiled the below publications and studies for workforce professionals seeking additional resources on how to serve the formerly incarcerated. These publications are authored and published by external organizations and are provided for reference purposes only.




Institution/ Organization

Publication Date

Integrated Reentry & Employment Strategies *

Review of Pilot Programs using Integrated Reentry and Employment Services

Findings from pilot sites in FL and WI 

Council of State Governments

October 2019

Recidivism of Felony Offenders in California *

Recidivism in California

Report presenting findings on recidivism rates for all types of felony offenders in California—including those sentenced to prison, jail only, jail followed by probation, or probation only

Public Policy Institute of California

June 2019

Repairing the Road to Redemption in California

Impact of a criminal conviction

Report studying the collateral consequences of a criminal conviction and opportunities to advance solutions that will eliminate barriers to success for California’s justice involved population

Californians for Safety and Justice

September 2018

Nowhere to Go: Homelessness among formerly incarcerated people


Report studying homelessness trends among the formerly incarcerated

Prison Policy Institute

August 2018

Out of Prison & Out of Work: Unemployment among formerly incarcerated people

Unemployment among formerly incarcerated people

Report studying unemployment trends among the formerly incarcerated

Prison Policy Institute

July 2018

California Nonprofits and the Public Workforce System: How CBOs Can Make Their Voices Heard in the WIOA Planning Process

CBO Engagement

California-specific guide for CBO engagement in the WIOA planning process

International Rescue Committee

July 2018

Work and opportunity before and after incarceration *

Labor market and incarceration trends

Analysis of national incarceration and labor market data

Brookings Institute



Incentivizing Employers to Hire Ex-Offenders

Employer Incentives

In an experiment conducted for this research brief, 59 out of 100 employers filling an entry-level job would consider hiring someone who has one nonviolent felony conviction with the incentive of a baseline tax credit.

Rand Corporation

February 2018

Bridge to Opportunities: How One Probation Agency Developed a Program Designed to Connect Probationers to High-Wage Jobs *


Best Practices / Case Study

Report studying the design and implementation of Sacramento’s  Career Training

Partnership program, which connected probationers to quality jobs in the construction sector.

Rand Corporation


Incarceration to Reentry Education & Training Pathways in California

Education and Training Pathways

Issue brief examining how California is aligning education and training opportunities for people who are currently or formerly incarcerated


June 2017

The Integrated Reentry and Employment Strategies Pilot Project

Pilot Program Studying Integrated Reentry and Employment Service Strategies

The IRES pilot project was designed to test innovative approaches
to reducing recidivism and increasing job readiness for people
returning from incarceration and to identify successful strategies
for integrating reentry and employment programming

Council of State Governments

April 2017

Bridging Workforce Development and Corrections Cultures

Job Centers in Correctional Facilities

Issue brief exploring lessons from the planning phase of the Linking to Employment Activities Pre-release (LEAP) grants

Mathematica Policy Research and Social Policy Research Associates

November 2016

Reentry and Employment for the Formerly Incarcerated and the Role of American Trades Unions

Trade Unions

Policy brief exploring the effect of under- and un-employment on the formerly incarcerated and how the expertise and structure of American trades unions could provide critical training programs inside and outside of prisons and jails

National Employment Law Project

April 2016

Road Map to Reentry: A California Legal Guide

California Reentry Resource Guide

A comprehensive guide for formerly incarcerated individuals reentering society, designed to help those individuals navigate the myriad challenges of acclimating to life after incarceration

Root & Rebound

March 2016

Integrated Reentry and Employment Strategies: Reducing Recidivism and Promoting Job Readiness

Promising Practices and Implementation Guide

White paper written to address the challenges faced by service providers who serve adults on probation or leaving prison/jail who are seeking a job

Council of State Governments

September 2013

Reentry and the Ties that Bind: An Examination of Social Ties, Employment, and Recidivism

Family ties, employment and recidivism

Study testing hypotheses about the link between familial ties, post-release employment, and recidivism. The findings suggest that family ties have implications for both recidivism and job attainment. The results suggest that good quality social ties may be particularly important for men with histories of frequent unemployment

Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences

April 2011

Employment and Female Offenders: An Update of the Empirical Research

Gender Responsive Strategies for Justice-Involved Women

Summary of available literature related to employment and women in the criminal justice system

National Institute of Corrections

November 2010


The CWDB issued draft Regional and Local Planning Guidance spelling out new planning requirements in the spring of 2018, and final guidance was issued through WSD18-01 on July 27, 2018.”

To view a printable version of this web page in PDF, click here.

Workforce – Corrections  Interactive Map

Additional Resources:


To contact us about this page only:
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Some outdated or obsolete documents have been removed from this website for business reasons. To view a list of these documents, view the Removed Documents webpage