Re-Integrating Millions

Considering that the United States has incarcerated more of its citizens than any other country in the world, we’ve created a problem we can’t avoid – re-integrating millions of people into mainstream society. With restrictions on employment that bar former felons from even submitting an application for an open position, we’re creating conditions that, at best, force former offenders into lying to get jobs or returning to crime in order to survive. —-Add in restrictions on housing and a stable foundation for starting over is virtually impossible.

But there are alternatives to these ostracizing tactics. The Ohio Justice & Policy Center, the PowerNet of Dayton and the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction are trying to present some of those alternatives at the 4th Annual Raising The Bar Ex-Offender Reentry Conference.

On April 30, May 1 and May 2 at the Ponitz Center at Sinclair Community College in Dayton, a host of speakers and presenters will offer a wealth of information about “ex-offender reentry.” Some of the highlights are:

  • Breaking Stereotypes, by Building Bridges
  • Punishment and Inequality in America, by Bruce Western, Harvard University
  • Second Chance Act Workshop, by the Council of State Governments
  • Close2Death - A Philadelphia filmed Docudrama

There will be more than 40 workshops and presentations exploring the topics of criminal justice, substance abuse and health care, support services, employment and education, and housing and community.“This year's conference will feature Reentry On Trial -a mock trial presentation testing reentry's most controversial issues,” says the event brochure. “With actual presiding judges, litigation teams, witness testimonies and exhibits... from opening statements to closing remarks.”

Registration is required and fees are $55 / half day and $90 / full day. CEUs are available for those professionals who ask.

For more information or to register call the Ohio Justice & Policy Center at 513-421-1108 or PowerNet of Dayton at 937-225-3120.

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