A Commitment to Culture: Continuing Customs, Preserving Traditions
When inmates are placed in out-of-state correctional facilities, they bring their cultural practices and traditions beliefs with them. CCA understands and respects the time-honored customs that are important to inmates’ way of life.
While prison is a punishment, CCA believes that men and women behind bars deserve humane treatment as they use this time to better themselves. For out-of-state inmates, culturally relevant outlets preserve beneficial connections and promote facility security for inmates, staff and the greater community. Studies show that participation in recreational and rehabilitation programs results in fewer disciplinary reports and incidents. When inmates are positively engaged, they exhibit better behavior, which keeps the prison climate calm, safe and secure.
For more than 10 years, CCA has been building bridges that connect inmates to their cultural identity. Maintaining these rites can help them as they adapt to new norms. Adhering to traditions can also act as a great stabilizer for inmates distanced from their familiar mode of living.
For Hawaii inmates at CCA, this means developing culturally sensitive approaches that help keep their cultural practices intact by:
Working with the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and select native Hawaiian religious groups to design, develop and deliver culturally relevant programs and opportunities to inmates.
Recognizing celebrations, such as Makahiki Day, Prince Kuhio Day and King Kamehameha Day.
Offering native Hawaiian religious services in addition to other faith-based counseling and study options.
Providing meals based on regional tastes and cultural preferences, featuring dishes like shoyu chicken and kalua pork for Hawaiian inmates.
Coordinating remote visitation sessions with family and friends back home.
CCA takes a total approach when it comes to providing rehabilitative opportunities for all inmates. As a result, CCA’s services address the emotional, social, spiritual, physical and cultural needs of out-of-state inmates. We believe that such opportunities improve outcomes of inmates when they leave our facilities and return to their communities.