NASHVILLE, Tenn., May 16, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- CoreCivic, Inc. (NYSE:CXW) (the "Company") released today its first-ever Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) report, highlighting progress toward unprecedented commitments announced five years ago to improve inmate reentry programming and spotlight the need for a comprehensive national effort to combat recidivism.
The 64-page document is an industry first and reviews the impact of CoreCivic's operations on society and the environment, highlights its goals, and explains how the company uses commonly accepted ESG reporting standards to govern itself.
"This is another step in our company's years-long effort to help make sure that once people leave prison, they never come back," said Damon Hininger, president and chief executive officer. "We are pleased to have an opportunity to highlight the environmental, social and governance commitments that drive our industry leadership. This report shows how we act as a responsible corporate citizen, set goals and hold ourselves publicly accountable - both when we fall short and when we make progress. It shows how and why we are helping drive a national conversation and leading by example to tackle the unacceptable national crisis of recidivism."
Hininger said initial investor response to the initiatives and the company's commitment to reporting in accordance ESG standards has been "positive, encouraging and instructive." The report can be found at www.corecivic.com.
Among advances in its inmate reentry programming, CoreCivic reported on its goals progress in 2018 and 2017 in five areas of concentration that aim to reduce the nation's recidivism crisis:
- In Educational Services, the companyexceeded its 2018 goals to award high school equivalency (HSE) certificates and industry-recognized certificates (IRCs) that help inmates secure jobs after release. The company believes it is on track to achieve its 5-year goal to award 7,525 HSE certificates and 23,849 IRCs to inmates by the end of 2019.
- In 2018, the company awarded 1,653 HSEs, topping by nearly 4 percent its yearly target to award 1,595 HSEs. This compares to 1,684 HSEs awarded in 2017.
- In 2018, the company awarded 4,712 IRCs, topping by 6 percent its yearly target to award 4,454 IRCs. This compares to 4,483 IRCs awarded in 2017.
- In Treatment and Behavioral Programs, CoreCivic helped 72 percent of participating inmates complete treatment programs in 2018, compared with 61 percent in 2017. The overall company goal was 75 percent. Seven facilities exceeded the 75 percent target rate, and three facilities recorded completion rates at or above 90 percent. The company's 75 percent completion goal was revised up from the initial 60 percent goal set by Hininger in 2014.
- In Reentry Services, CoreCivic in 2018 achieved a 382 percent increase in journals completed by inmates participating in and completing the company's evidence-based reentry process, Go Further. In 2018, inmates completed 2,702 evidence-based, Go Further journals, compared to 560 in 2017.
- Eight facilities implemented Go Further in 2018, bringing the total number of facilities equipped with the process to 13.
- In Chaplaincy and Religious Services, 868 inmates completed the Threshold program in 2018, falling 7 percent below the company's target. The program is designed to help inmates improve relationships and decision-making within a faith-based or secular context, and the shortfall is largely attributed to a change in mission of several CoreCivic facilities that affected inmates' length of stay.
- In Victim Impact Programs, which educate participants by showing the far-reaching human impact of their crimes, the company helped inmates log 996 completions, for a total of 2,078 completions in 2018. Looking ahead, CoreCivic recently surpassed its five-year goal of achieving 2,300 completions by the end of 2019.
- Additionally, a total of 13 facilities received Victim Impact program training in 2017 and 2018, bringing the number of facilities trained to 19.
Hininger noted independent studies detailed in the ESG report that show inmates who obtain GEDs are 30 percent less likely to return to prison; those who complete addiction treatment programs are 50 percent less likely to return, and those who complete vocational training are 28 percent more likely to find a job after release.
The 2018 ESG report also updates stakeholders on CoreCivic's work to set environmental goals across its system by utilizing a strategic energy management program now in progress that will help the company specify target goals in future years' ESG reports. Among other initiatives underway, the company is incorporating green design elements in new facilities and into maintenance programs at existing facilities. The company currently has three LEED-certified-or-higher buildings in its portfolio of 97 buildings and is constructing a fourth in 2019.
Another area covered in the 2018 ESG report features updates to company public policy initiatives announced in 2017 intended to reduce recidivism and facilitate reentry. Public policies supported by CoreCivic include "Ban the Box" initiatives, which improve the chances of former inmates securing employment by not requiring disclosure of prior incarceration on initial employment applications. As of 2016, CoreCivic's application for employment no longer contains a "check the box" entry for incarceration. The policy announcement also encouraged support of political candidates who are in favor of such policies.
The ESG report also details CoreCivic's commitment to human rights, including the company's policy statement and information on their ongoing human-rights assessment, which will inform future initiatives and adjustments to existing policies. Supplier diversity, charitable giving, veterans hiring programs, PREA compliance, ethics and workforce rights, compensation, benefits, training and diversity are other areas covered by the report, which will become a regular benchmark for the company.
CoreCivic is a diversified, government-solutions company with the scale and experience needed to solve tough government challenges in cost-effective ways. We provide a broad range of solutions to government partners that serve the public good through high-quality corrections and detention management, innovative and cost-saving government real estate solutions, and a growing network of residential reentry centers to help address America's recidivism crisis. We are a publicly traded real estate investment trust (REIT) and the nation's largest owner of partnership correctional, detention and residential reentry facilities. The company has been a flexible and dependable partner for government for more than 30 years. Our employees are driven by a deep sense of service, high standards of professionalism and a responsibility to help government better the public good. Learn more at http://www.corecivic.com/.
This press release contains statements as to our beliefs and expectations of the outcome of future events that are "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, and the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the statements made. These include, but are not limited to, the risks and uncertainties associated with: (i) general economic and market conditions, including, but not limited to, the impact governmental budgets can have on our contract renewals and renegotiations, per diem rates, and occupancy; (ii) fluctuations in our operating results because of, among other things, changes in occupancy levels, competition, contract renegotiations or terminations, increases in costs of operations, fluctuations in interest rates and risks of operations; (iii) our ability to obtain and maintain correctional, detention, and residential reentry facility management contracts because of reasons including, but not limited to, sufficient governmental appropriations, contract compliance, negative publicity, and effects of inmate disturbances; (iv) changes in the privatization of the corrections and detention industry, the public acceptance of our services, the timing of the opening of new facilities and the commencement of new management contracts, as well as our ability to utilize current available beds; (v) changes in government policy regarding the utilization of the private sector for corrections, detention, and residential reentry capacity and our services; (vi) changes in government policy and in legislation and regulation of corrections and detention contractors that affect our business, including but not limited to, the continued utilization of the South Texas Family Residential Center (STFRC) by ICE under terms of the current contract, and the impact of any changes to immigration reform and sentencing laws (Our company does not, under longstanding policy, lobby for or against policies or legislation that would determine the basis for, or duration of, an individual's incarceration or detention.); (vii) our ability to successfully identify and consummate future acquisitions and our ability to successfully integrate the operations of completed acquisitions and realize projected returns resulting therefrom; (viii) increases in costs to develop or expand real estate properties that exceed original estimates, or the inability to complete such projects on schedule as a result of various factors, many of which are beyond our control, such as weather, labor conditions, cost inflation, and material shortages, resulting in increased construction costs; (ix) our ability to meet and maintain qualification for taxation as a REIT; and (x) the availability of debt and equity financing on terms that are favorable to us, or at all. Other factors that could cause operating and financial results to differ are described in the filings we make from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
CoreCivic takes no responsibility for updating the information contained in this press release following the date hereof to reflect events or circumstances occurring after the date hereof or the occurrence of unanticipated events or for any changes or modifications made to this press release or the information contained herein by any third-parties, including, but not limited to, any wire or internet services.
||Investors: Cameron Hopewell - Managing Director, Investor Relations - (615) 263-3024
Media: Steve Owen - Managing Director, Communications - (615) 263-3107
Source: CoreCivic, Inc.