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Michigan's Success Rate

Each year, the Michigan Department of Corrections reviews the outcomes of all individuals who were released from prison three years prior and subsequently tracks them to determine the state’s recidivism rate.

The 2020 release group, which is the most recent group to complete three years of post-release tracking, included over 6,100 individuals who successfully completed their incarceration and community supervision and did not return to prison for either a technical violation of parole or a new crime in the 36 months since their initial release.  

As a result, Michigan’s recidivism rate remained near record lows, with 22.7% of those released by the MDOC in 2020 returning to prison within three years.

This reflects the second-lowest recidivism rate in Michigan’s history. 

“Those who work for the MDOC are called upon to do something remarkable, which is to help individuals change their behavior and direction in life.  This is not easy work, but every single MDOC employee plays a role in producing these outcomes.  I’m pleased to see that our work is making communities safer and helping those we work with find success,” said Department of Corrections Director Heidi Washington.

The Michigan Department of Corrections remains committed to using evidence-based correctional practices.  This focus, along with key investments in staff, high-quality programs, and effective community-based supports, has continued to place Michigan at the forefront of the national conversation about effective corrections and crime reduction.

Updated: 04/17/24