Discharge and Release Center

The Discharge and Release Center (DRC) provides resources and referrals to incarcerated individuals who are scheduled to be released while connecting those individuals to outside agencies to ensure that they have resources available to them to meet their basic needs.

Prior to release, incarcerated individuals may have the opportunity to make phone calls to arrange for transportation home. They may be provided with transit tickets for use on the bus or light rail. They are offered NARCAN, a prescription medication used to treat known or suspected opioid overdoses, appropriate clothing if needed, and a letter of incarceration verification upon request from the DRC.

Before release, incarcerated people visit the DRC where a Discharge Coordinator evaluates their immediate needs and can make recommendations to agencies and organizations that can assist with those needs in the community. This includes information about shelter, housing, mental health, substance use, legal aid, medical, transportation and more. The DRC has materials for each of those options that individuals can take as well as a reference when they leave.

This effort is focused on removing the barriers that individuals have so that they have greater opportunity for success when they leave the jail. DRC staff believes a more supportive release process better equips people to return home, and that helping those who are being released find the appropriate resources will assist in their success.

Discharge and Release Statistics

The DRC began tracking referrals on November 1, 2020.

Discharge and Release Statistics(PDF, 160KB)

Location and Hours

The DRC is located on Level 1 of the Allegheny County Jail.

The hours of operation are: Monday-Friday, 8:00 am to 8:00 pm, and Saturday 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. The DRC is not open on Sunday or holidays.

Contact Information

A discharge coordinator can be contacted via phone at 412-350-2231.

Additional Information

The Discharge Release Center provides resources and referrals to incarcerated individuals who are scheduled to be released. Steps in the release process that are handled by other offices and are not part of DRC services include:

Inmate Funds
The cashier’s office is notified when an individual is going to be released. Any excess outstanding inmate funds are released with a small amount in cash with the balance by check.

Incarcerated individuals are provided with an appropriate supply of needed medications upon release, as well as a prescription and referral information for follow-up with a healthcare provider. This step is done by the jail’s medical staff and/or the discharge planner.

Mental Health
Connection to post-release mental health care and resources is completed by the jail’s medical staff and/or the discharge planner.

Physical Release
The release process starts when the jail receives authorization from the Court, and all other charges and holds have been lifted. The jail has up to 48 hours to release an individual, starting at midnight of the day the release order is sent to the jail. Bonded individuals are typically released within three hours of the jail’s receipt of paperwork.

Intake is responsible for returning the property (including clothing) an incarcerated individual had on them when committed to the facility. Upon the return of clothing, a determination is made as to whether there are additional clothing needs.