January 19, 2020

Instead of Prison, Reset A Person’s Life

We’ve all heard stories about the cycle of crime in some communities, where the schools don’t provide a safe environment, let alone a decent education, where two or three generations of families (particularly the men) have been incarcerated at some point, where going to prison is seen as a rite of passage, where innocent young men are so often treated like criminals that they feel there is no point in even trying to follow another path.

We all know what happens when a person who has committed a minor offense goes to prison. They are surrounded by hardened criminals who teach them about tougher crimes, drugs, gangs, and violence. By the time they get out, they are much more a part of the criminal culture than they were going in.

Once they get out, what chance to they have to live a law-abiding life? They may still have only third grade skills in reading, writing and math; no job prospects, and nobody to show them the ropes of how to build a life on the outside.

We all make mistakes. We just finished our annual High Holy Day ritual of asking for forgiveness, of making tshuvah, of turning back to the right path. What if, instead of sending our young men down this rabbit hole of prison and despair, we could help them to reset their lives, to do tshuvah, to turn back onto the right path so they can lead a productive life?

This week Jane Mitchell, CEO & Co-Founder of “>Google Impact Challenge before the deadline on October 20. Be part of the solution.

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