Why do you think formerly incarcerated individuals deserve a Fair Shake?
Why do you think people coming out of prison should get a fair shake? We would love to read your answer to this question. Contact Us if you are willing to have your answer posted.
says: Because I have made mistakes, and I continue to make mistakes, I understand what it’s like to want another chance to be trusted. I also understand how it is possible to be remorseful, and earnest about making a change. I see that we all have the same potential for good and evil; and that evil can be as effortless as not thinking, and good can be as simple as a smile.
Because folks who have come out of prison need a way to prove their intentions to re-engage. For us to believe that returning prisoners are somehow ‘all the same’ perpetuates the ‘nothing works’ strategy that continues to keep our recidivism rate very high and diverts the money away from education, safety and care of the commons.
Because I know from experience that the ‘pull yourself up by your bootstraps’ idealism of the American Dream is still possible. After a formerly incarcerated individual has completed her or his sentence, it’s time for them to transition and contribute! We are all integral and valuable collaborators in building our democracy. Our society is a reflection of our values.
Finally, I have a rather healthy level of self-interest. It is my relentless quest to enjoy life to the fullest. I have found that it is much easier to enjoy life when I feel safe, respected and engaged in my community. Since I am responsible for my happiness, I can see that I am also responsible for making the world a great place to live.
Audrey, in Florida, shared her perspective:
I believe that people who rise above their mistakes show a strength of character that is uncommon in people today. To admit your wrongs with a sense of humility; to choose a new path, forsaking the familiar; to choose to work hard for a living, instead of continuing to go after easy money, these are commendable actions. I think it is easier for someone to avoid a life of crime if they have never tasted it, than for someone who had some success at it at some point in time. Everyone is capable of going through a metamorphosis. Formerly incarcerated individuals, that choose to grow into law- abiding citizens, ought to be recognized for the attributes they possess that are beneficial to society as a whole.