From WAMU 88.5 and The Kojo Nnamdi Show: Returning from Prison

By LIFT on March 2, 2011

Categories: News, Our Work


kojonnamdilogoLIFT-DC Site Coordinator Lisa Pollan submitted a question to The Kojo Nnamdi Show on Washington, D.C.’s WAMU 88.5 to ask what programs the Office on Ex-Offender Affairs is introducing to help returning individuals who were formerly incarcerated reintegrate into society.

Beginning at 48:26, Lisa’s question reads:

“As a Site Coordinator at LIFT-DC, a nonprofit organization that serves low-income and underserved community members, I work with many returning citizens to locate employment and housing. I am curious to know what programs the Office on Ex-Offender Affairs is planning on introducing to help returning citizens secure gainful employment. I often find discussions about helping returning citizens focus on the “big picture” issues (such as severe sentencing laws and the number of people in prison) rather than practical ways we can help returning citizens to successfully re-integrate into society.”

Charles Thornton, Director of the D.C. Office on Ex-Offender Affairs responded, saying, “The Office on Returning Citizens Affairs is doing what we call “link services;” what we’re doing is linking people up with community-based services, nonprofits, community and the faith community…who have opportunities though grants and that sort of thing. We also began conversations with the Public Employment Services where we would be getting involved with their transitional employment program. We could direct returning citizens directly to Public Employment Services. So we really focus on how we can get really into the community, get with programs like LIFT and be a clearinghouse for these guys who just called in, these contractors who just called in, and use this office as leverage for those contractors.”
Listen to the entire interview using the original article link below.