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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Michael D. Crews

Florida Department of Corrections
Michael D. Crews, Secretary

Faith- and Character-Based Institutions (FCBIs)

Faith- and Character-Based Institutions (FCBIs) are entire correctional facilities devoted to the Faith- and Character-Based Correctional Initiative. Eligible inmates volunteer for FCBIs without regard to religion and can choose among secular or religious programming.  The program includes three distinct phases of participation.  Enrollment begins before the inmate is actually transferred to a FCB institution. 

WorkbookPhase 1 - Following a basic overview of the faith and character based program, inmates who are interested are given an orientation and personal growth workbook to complete as the initial program requirement. 

Phase 2 - Inmates who have successfully completed Phase 1 are moved to a phase 2 institution.  This is an institution that has numerous faith and character program offerings but is not designated as a FCB Institution.  During an approximate 90 day stay inmates are required to complete at one FCB program.  Marion CI and Holmes CI are the current Phase 2 institutions. 

Wakulla CIPhase 3 – This begins when the inmate is assigned to one of the four Faith and Character Based institutions: Lawtey CI, Wakulla CI, Wakulla Annex, and Hernando CI.  These institutions feature public forums for community volunteers who want to make a difference in inmates’ lives and provide a variety of activities and classes (both religious and secular) for eligible inmates.

FCB Institutions provide a program-rich environment for inmates interested in personal growth and character development. The program duration is open-ended and is for medium, minimum, close and community custody level inmates. Inmates can chose among courses on life-skills training, religious education, substance abuse recovery, family life training, mentoring and academic or vocational subjects.

FCBIs incorporate personal conviction as a dynamic catalyst for a real and lasting change. Because the entire institution is committed to the same goal, positive peer reinforcement occurs. The ultimate goal is that through inner transformation there will be a reduction in recidivism and a smoother transition into society so that ex-offenders can become productive citizens and remain ex-offenders.

Eligibility Criteria

An inmate's faith or lack thereof is not considered in determining eligibility for an FCBI, but each of the following criteria must be satisfied:

  • Inmates must have received no disciplinary reports that resulted in disciplinary confinement during the previous ninety (90) days;
  • Inmates must be in general population housing status; not in work-release, reception or transit status;
  • Inmates must fit the parameters of the institutional profile; and
  • The inmate must volunteer for the FCBI.

Policy Statement

Faith- and Character-Based Institutions are designed to provide a wide range of activities for eligible inmates who have indicated an interest in personal growth and character development. FCBIs will emphasize the importance of personal responsibility, work, education, substance abuse treatment and peer support.

The goals of an FCBI include, without limitation, the following:

  • rehabilitation;
  • reintegration of inmates into the community;
  • reduction of recidivism and disciplinary reports;
  • increasing system-wide institutional security;
  • offering a fuller range of religious accommodations; and
  • enhancing restorative justice programming.

An FCBI provides a public forum for community volunteers to offer programs in all areas of personal growth and character development. Volunteers from both secular and religious organizations are equally welcome to participate, subject only to content-neutral time, place and manner restrictions, based on institutional, administrative and security needs.

An inmate's decision to request assignment to an FCBI, and his or her choice of religious or non-religious programming content, is entirely voluntary. An inmate's religious faith, or lack thereof, is not considered in determining eligibility. Staff may not attempt to convert inmates toward a particular secular, faith or religious viewpoint or affiliation. Except as provided by law, state funds may not be expended on programs that further religious indoctrination, or on inherently religious activities such as religious worship, religious instruction or proselytization.

Curriculum

Curriculum includes Mentoring, Life Skills, Personal Faith Courses and a variety of topical classes that fluctuates with the local program needs.

Capacity

Lawtey CI (male) 835 Beds
Wakulla CI & WC (male) 1,711 Beds
Wakulla Annex (male) 1,532 Beds
Hernando CI (female) 286 Beds

Total

4,364 Beds