Category Archives: ex-offender

To Prison for Poverty

This is happening today ,right now. People are being jailed and forced to pay exorbitant amounts of monies for minor crimes to line the pockets of for profit business.  Alabama ,Georgia, and Florida . Let your congressman/woman  and Governor know that this is not acceptable. New legislation needs to be passed.

Obama plans clemency for hundreds of drug offenders

DUBLIN, Calif—Scrawled on the inside of Barbara Scrivner’s left arm is a primitive prison tattoo that says “Time Flies.”

If only that were the case.

For Scrivner, time has crawled, it’s dawdled, and on bad days, it’s felt like it’s stood completely still. She was 27 years old when she started serving a 30-year sentence in federal prison for selling a few ounces of methamphetamine. Now, 20 years later, she feels like she’s still living in the early ’90s—she’s never seen or touched a cellphone, she still listens to her favorite band, the Scorpions, and she carefully coats her eyelids in electric blue eye shadow in the morning.

It’s out there, outside of prison, where time flies.

On a sunny afternoon at a federal prison outside San Francisco last month, Scrivner nervously clutched a manila envelope full of photos of herself and her daughter that she keeps in her cell. As she displays the pictures, Scrivner’s daughter Alannah, who was just 2 years old when her mom was put away, changes from a redheaded, freckled young kid to a sullen teen to a struggling young mom. Scrivner changes in the photos, too. At first she’s a plump-cheeked beauty with chestnut-brown hair, then she’s a bleached-blonde woman in her early 30s, before becoming increasingly gaunt as the years grind on.

READ MORE

Barbra Scrivner thought winning clemency was the hard part. Then she got out.

Barbra Scrivner thought winning clemency was the hard part. Then she got out.

On a sunny day just a few months after she was released from federal prison, Barbra Scrivner drove three blocks from her ranch-style home on a quiet street in Fresno, Calif., to the Walgreens on the corner, tottering on her wedge heels as she got out of the car. After sending out her résumé to dozens of nearby businesses, she had finally landed a job interview, to be a sales associate at the store.

Scrivner clutched her résumé, but she also brought what she considered a secret weapon of sorts: a letter sent by President Barack Obama after he set her free last December. The single sheet was hand-signed — Scrivner moved her fingertips over the signature to check that it wasn’t a copy — and was full of encouragement from the president. She planned to show her interviewer at Walgreens the letter, so he would know she wasn’t just like any other ex-felon fresh out of prison.

READ MORE

Virginia Jail Holds Father-Daughter Dance For Inmates

 

Father and daughter dance

Father and daughter dance

http://www.theindychannel.com/news/u-s-world/jail-holds-father-daughter-dance-for-inmates

RICHMOND, Va. – All of the prisoners at Virginia’s Richmond City Jail admit they made poor choices, and could be better fathers.

“I am definitely failing as a parent right now, just by being out of her life,” Ronnell Glasgow said.
A few examples: Julian Edwards is serving four years for drug distribution, Joey Atkins is awaiting trial for illegal gun possession, and Glasgow is serving seven years for selling drugs, ABC News reported. 

Most of the men are in their 20s and 30s. Gerald Ward is awaiting trial for guns and drug charges. He told us his daughter is only four. “But it’s amazing what she understands. She understand that Daddy did something wrong, ” he says.

As these troubled men serve out their sentences, their children pay a price –  often spending the most important years of their lives without active father figures.

Regardless of the culture, there’s something special and valued about the father-daughter bond, yet when these daughters go to visit their fathers in jail, they can only speak to them through a thick glass or on the telephone.

“It is hard for her to release and talk to me behind the glass,” said Edwards.

In 2012, the father-daughter dance at the Richmond City Jail was born.

It was the brainchild of Angela Patton, who runs Camp Diva, a Richmond nonprofit aimed at empowering young girls. She had heard the concerns of a daughter who had a father in jail. The young girl wanted to attend an event where she could dance with her father too, like others girls and their fathers across the city.

Patton convinced Richmond City Sheriff C. T. Woody Jr. to host the dance inside the jail, and he agreed.

“They are not hard core criminals, they deserve a second chance,” Woody said. “And they can be very good citizens and the best way to make a good citizen is to make good fathers.”

Woody says he agreed because he feels that inmates who are allowed to dance with their daughters will be reminded why they should never return to jail once they’re released.

On Saturday, June 8, a dance was held with daughters ranging from age 4 to 16.

“I did this because I know how important family is.  Someone saved me.  I haven’t always been a law-abiding, law enforcement officer,” Woody said.

Hours before the dance, the men expected to meet their daughters are brought suits and dress shoes to their jail cells. Some of them are wearing a tie for the first time. Outside of their orange jumpsuits, they look like everyday men.

At home, 8-year-old A’maya Thomas was getting ready too. Her father, Antoine Thomas, is serving time for robbing a bank. “I get to touch him and I get to hug him and I get to kiss him,” she said.

When the big moment arrives, the young girls in brightly colored dresses are escorted down the drab and dreary halls of the jail.  When they walk past the solid steel mechanical doors, the fathers waiting on the other side start to cry. The young girls bounce across the hall and into their fathers’ arms.

The dance itself only lasts for a few hours, but in that short time, the young girls have real moments with their fathers.

When the men do time, their daughters do time, and they told us they plan to never let that happen to the girls again.

Ronnell Glasgow, here for selling drugs, promised to do better.

“I thought I needed material things to make my daughter happy, when what I needed was right in front of my face,” he said.

ABC News’ Michael Koenigs and Bradley Blackburn contributed to this report.

Life has knocked you down, but you can get up.

 

Many times in our journey life can deal us some unexpected blows. It seems that we are blindsided by the vicissitudes(love that word) of life.  It might seem that this time that you are knocked down is the last straw. But know that you can get up. You can prevail.  Don’t feel as if you have to do it alone. Reach Up,Reach Out. Let some one know that you are ready  to move forward, ready for change.

Real Success

Real Success

 

 

Life

10154557_551244341641529_1933793265_n

10154914_295235140640341_8155385833212718328_n

Returning Home -Meet Ms. Venessa Jones

Ms Venessa Jones gives an interview regarding her participation in the Empowering Choices Jail Program at the Tuscaloosa County Jail. She was an active participant. She currently participates in the Empowering Choices Alternative 2 Incarceration community program and serves as a volunteer with the organization. The ECA2I program is a 14 week enrichment program that assist ex-offender women in making a smooth transition back into the community.

Returning Home- Meet Ms. Ty’Wanda Johnson

Ms. Ty’Wanda Johnson was a participant in the Empowering Choices Jail Program at the Tuscaloosa County Jail in Tuscaloosa Al. She was an attentive student and applied the materials that she learned. She is currently participating in the Empowering Choices Alternative 2 Incarceration Community Program in Tuscaloosa . The program is a 14 week Skills enrichment program aimed to assist ex offenders in making a smooth transition back into the community.