There shall be a special commission established pursuant to section 2A of chapter 4 of the General Laws to study and investigate programs designed to unite and reconnect incarcerated persons with their families before and after their release from prison. The commission shall consist of 2 members of the house of representatives, 1 of whom shall be nominated by the minority leader, 2 members of the senate, 1 of whom shall be nominated by the minority leader, the commissioner of the department of correction or a designee, the commissioner of the department of children and families or a designee, the commissioner of probation or a designee and 5 members to be appointed by the governor, 1 of whom shall be a representative of Aid to Incarcerated Mothers, Inc., and 1 of whom shall be an expert in reentry and family unification programs. The members of the commission may elect a member to serve as chair. As part of its study and investigation the commission shall: (i) review, identify and analyze existing programs, including programs in other states, which connect incarcerated mothers and fathers with their children and educate incarcerated men and women on the responsibilities of fatherhood and motherhood and the importance of establishing positive relationships with their children; and (ii) make recommendations for the implementation of programs designed to unite and reconnect incarcerated persons with their families, including programs to potentially be administered by the commonwealth or non-profit organizations, which would qualify for federal grant money pursuant to the Second Chance Act of 2007, Public Law 110-199.
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