We Can End Mass Incarceration
In The United States

We live in a progressive country whereby mass incarceration can be eliminated through solution-based criminal justice reform initiatives. To dismantle this humanitarian crisis in the United States, progressive action-based research, culturally congruent programming is needed.

Just like moons and like suns, with the certainty of tides.
Just like hopes springing high.
Still I RISE.
Did you want to see me broken, bowed head and lowered eyes,
shoulders falling like teardrops, weakened by my soulful cries?
Still I RISE.

I rise, I rise, I rise.

– Maya Angelou

What is RISE?

Research Institute for Social Equity (RISE) is a 501c3 nonprofit social and criminal justice reform organization that employs culturally congruent solutions to end mass incarceration in the United States (US). RISE’s focus is centered on reducing high rates of recidivism using evidenced-based progressive programming that is whole-person centered in scope, cross-culturally.

Through research, RISE scope of work examines the historical context of trauma associated with social and criminal injustices on vulnerable populations, which has largely contributed to mass incarceration in the US today. In addition, we explore the psycho-social impact on quality of life and over-all wellbeing of those impacted. Further, to strengthen outcomes, we provide innovations in reentry services under our RISE-Reentry Services Program. Our research and programming are based on the voided voices of those who have lived experiences with addiction, criminality, and reentry. We refer to those voided voices as the first responders and the true experts in shaping a better criminal justice system that will reduce individual, family, and community harm.

Based on the body of research literature, the continuous swelling of the criminal justice system derived from re-arrests of the reentry population, as opposed to first time offenders. This occurrence is primarily due to technical violations related to unemployment, unsuitable housing, probation/parole fees, substance use relapse, and re-offense. The Department of Justice reports, “more than 73% of individuals who reenter society from correctional facilities daily, and the 72% return within 1-3 years.” Our research findings show, despite the use of reentry or rehabilitation programs after release, recidivism rates continue to remain high, particularly for people of color.

To achieve our mission of reducing recidivism and ending mass incarceration, RISE employs 4 strategies, which are: Existential and Humanistic Research Psychology, Innovations in Program Development, Policy Advocacy for Social and Criminal Justice Reform, and RISE-Reentry Services Program.

We Rise

Our Strategies

Research Institute for Social Equity approach is geared toward empowering practitioners who provide services to Incarcerated and Returning Citizens (IRC) and empower IRCs to reduce recidivism through innovative alternative programming.

Existential & Humanistic Research Psychology

The Research Institute for Social Equity (RISE) staff and advisors have more than 60 years of combined experience. Our areas of focus are qualitative, quantitative, mixed-methods, surveys, data analysis, and program evaluation.

Innovations In Program Development

Through cutting-edge research, Research Institute for Social Equity offers innovative program design and consultancy to governments, law enforcement, philanthropic organizations, research institutions, and Community-Based Organizations

Policy Advocacy For Social And Criminal Justice Reform

Research Institute for Social Equity policy and advocacy initiatives is focused on reentry and rehabilitation in areas of racial bias, racial profiling, unrealistic reentry policies, pardon/expungement processes, and sentencing.

RISE Reentry Services Program

According to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, before transformation can become fully realized, they must first have their basic needs met.