Airway Heights prison teaches inmates how to interact with others

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by WHITNEY WARD & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on March 15, 2013 at 5:25 PM

AIRWAY HEIGHTS, Wash. -- A new program at Airway Heights prison is teaching high-risk and violent prisoners how to interact with other people to help cut down on violence.

Nearly 150 prisoners, most with violent criminal convictions, are now graduating from "Thinking for a change."

The inmates have been going to classes twice a week, learning coping skills and conflict resolution to help them succeed both inside prison and out.

In less than a year, the test pod has seen fight and violence decrease by 75%. Last year, there were 40 incidence of violence and this year there have been only 10.

This program was not voluntary for the prisoners. Corrections officers also received a lot of training which will help spread the core principles of the program throughout  the rest of the prison population.

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