Iron County gets probation supervision program grant

CRYSTAL FALLS, Mich. (WLUC) - Iron County Circuit Court has been awarded a $55,000 grant for an intense probation supervision program, according to a press release from the Michigan Supreme Court.

The court says it awarded more than $3 million to 24 courts statewide to pay for the Swift and Sure Sanctions Probation Program, which targets high-risk felony offenders with a history of probation violations or failures. Compared to individuals on regular probation, Swift and Sure probationers are 36 percent less likely to reoffend after completing the program.

Iron County was the only court in Upper Michigan to receive a grant for fiscal year 2018. A Michigan Supreme Court spokesperson says the grant is for the 41st Circuit Court, so people from Dickinson and Menominee counties won't be excluded, but the grant is geared for people in Iron County.

"Through intensive oversight and supervision, individuals in Swift and Sure programs get the specialized and structured help they need to avoid falling back into habits that may have prevented them from succeeding in traditional probation programs," said State Court Administrator Milton L. Mack, Jr. in the press release. "I am proud of these courts for their dedication to the program participants, and I am pleased that we are able to provide critical funding for these remarkable programs that are truly strengthening communities and saving lives around the state."

According to the Michigan Supreme Court, more than 1,000 current probationers have participated in Swift and Sure across the state. Among graduates, 67 percent were unemployed at admission, and only 14 percent were unemployed at discharge. The Michigan Supreme Court says the cost per probationer is declining steadily.

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