Road To Successful Re-Entry: From Inmate to Taxpayer

  • Who: Hosted by Charlotte Community Justice Coalition
  • What: Panel discussion about Re-entry issues in North Carolina featuring individuals from all aspects of the Criminal Justice System.
  • When: October 25, 2012; 5:30pm-8:00pm
  • Where: Charlotte School of Law, Suttle Ave. Campus, Rm. 106

As a part of the larger, two-day Access to Justice Symposium at Charlotte School of Law, the Charlotte Community Justice Coalition (Coalition) will host a panel to educate students and community members about Re-Entry.  I had the opportunity to speak with Professor Cindy Adcock, Director of Experiential Learning & Associate Professor at Charlotte School of Law and a member of the Coalition, about the group and the upcoming panel discussion.

On their website, the Coalition provides the following statement: “The CHARLOTTE COMMUNITY JUSTICE COALITION (formerly the Charlotte Coalition for a Moratorium Now) advocates for effective, humane, and restorative solutions to pressing dangers and stressors in our community, such as crime, mental illness, and poverty. CCJC seeks to be a catalyst in bringing to bear the combined power of organizations and stakeholders in support of initiatives designed to enhance community justice in the Greater Charlotte area.”

Professor Adcock describes the Coalition as “an umbrella group,” designed to identify and coordinate different participants in the Charlotte community to tackle the myriad issues related to the Criminal Justice system.  What started as a group focused exclusively on obtaining a moratorium on the death penalty in North Carolina has expanded to include a vast array of criminal justice initiatives, including individuals’ successful reintegration into society following incarceration.

What is “re-entry?”  Re-entry refers to a convicted offender’s transition from life in prison (or jail) back into the community.  Successful re-entry describes the individual becoming a law-abiding and contributing member of society. (See Bureau of Justice Assistance for more information)

Education about and access to resources are vital components of successful re-entry.  Barriers to successful re-entry, including employment, often result in recidivism. The Coalition is devoted to community education as well as developing practical solutions to many criminal justice issues.  The Road to Successful Re-Entry event will focus on educating attendees on the statistics and realities regarding re-entry as well as identification and discussion of practical considerations moving forward.  Panelists will represent all branches of the re-entry process, including (as posted on Rufus):

  • Henderson Hill, Executive Director, Federal Defenders of Western North Carolina (Moderator)
  • Greg Forest, Chief U.S. Probation Officer, U.S. Probation, Western District of North Carolina
  • Rev. Dr. Madeline McClenney-Sadler, Founder/President, Exodus Foundation
  • Erik Ortega, LifeWorks! Program Director, Center for Community Transitions
  • James M. Talley, Jr., Of Counsel, Horack Talley
  • Jamal Tate, Founder, Man Up: A Minority Male Mentoring Program
  • Derek Wilson, Adult Program Manager, Mecklenburg County Sheriff’s Office

The Civil Rights Clinic is especially excited about this event.  Members of the Clinic will be attending to learn more about the Re-Entry Process and how our projects may provide an avenue for successful Re-Entry to formerly incarcerated individuals.  Additionally, students enrolled in PEP II can receive double credit for attending (see Rufus for more information).

If you are interested in more information regarding the Charlotte Community Justice Coalition, visit their website at, www.charlottejustice.org.  If you are interested in attending the other symposium events please see the Rufus Calendar in addition to flyers around campus.

We look forward to seeing you at the panel next week!

By: Emily Ray

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