THE STIGMA IS REAL -
AND IT REQUIRES ACTION
1 in 3 Americans have an arrest record.
That's more than 70 million people who have had involvement with the criminal justice system in some way. Particularly for the 19 million people with felony records - about 8% of the US population - the stigma and impacts of that record causes tangible harm in their everyday lives.
Imagine serving time or successfully completing sentencing requirements, then preparing to rebuild your life. Then imagine hearing ‘no’ over and over as you look for a job or apply for an apartment lease. Employment and housing are the bedrocks of reentry. Without a living wage job, the obstacles for returning citizens become almost impossible to overcome.
THE TALENT GAP IS A RISK FOR US ALL
Some business leaders cite the talent and skills gap as one of the biggest long-term threats to the US economy - to the tune of $1.75 trillion, or 6% of the US economy.
What if the solution to this challenge is to embrace those often marginalized from the job market?
Second chance hiring doesn’t just benefit justice-involved families. We all have a stake in building a city where people can thrive - and we are all at risk if we can’t solve the hiring gap.
These statistics make us want to act. But before we start making changes, what would it look like to pause and challenge our own assumptions?
To become an effective second-chance city, we need to ‘unlearn’ the conscious and unconscious biases that create harm for justice-involved families. It’s time we lift up credible messengers and those with lived experience as guides to challenge our own biases and to lead the way. Ramona Brant was one of those credible messengers.
This February 25, let's honor Ramona's legacy and UnLearn together.
We will dive deeper into the challenges of justice-involved families, the benefits of second chance hiring - and how we can all help build a more equitable, prosperous city.
When you sign up for The UnLearning, you’ll join a guided journey designed to help you consider the biases we each bring to the criminal justice system - and you’ll be invited to imagine new ways to think. You’ll receive a list of resources and an invitation to an online discussion group to help process what you’re learning and unlearning.
I have been involved with, or impacted by the justice system
My life and my journey matter. I want to help build a city where I can thrive, provide for my family and love my life for years to come.
I am an employer or HR professional
As an employer, I have resources and influence. I want to learn more about untapped talent and how my business can both benefit from, and support, second-chance hiring.
I belong to a faith community
As a person of faith, I believe we are all responsible for building a community where people thrive. I want to use my influence and resources to help.
I am a Second Chance Supporter
I believe in second chances - and I want to build a city where everyone can live, succeed and thrive.
SIGN UP FOR THE UNLEARNING
Sign up for The UnLearning to dive deeper into the ways you can own your journey and make Charlotte a second chance city. For four weeks you'll receive an email that breaks down a specific issue related to justice-involvement and how it impacts us all. It will include:
Options to Read, Watch or Listen for a deeper dive
Access to a private Facebook group to facilitate deeper reflection
An invitation to a virtual gathering for an expert speaker, followed by Q&A