Monday, August 16, 2010

Jesus Saves Ministries Conducted Let My People Vote Workshop on August 12th

By:  Min. Angela Lee Price

Min. Angela Lee Price, Founder Jesus Saves Ministries, Member Services Director and Voter Empowerment Coordinator, St. Stephen Church for the 2004 and 2008 presidential elections, conducted the first of two "Let My People Vote" Restoration of Voting Rights Workshops for ex-offenders on August 12th for the Shawnee Justice Reinvestment Pilot Project in Louisville. Approximately 30 people, including representatives from community businesses and organizations attended the workshop to obtain information on restoration of voting rights. 

Larry Carter, Sr., above, who permanently lost the right to vote in 1996, completed an application at the workshop.  "I definitely want my rights back," stated Carter.  "I haven't so much as had a parking ticket since that offense some 14 years ago.  I want to have a say so in whats happening in my community.  Even if it's simply voicing my concerns for the upkeep of my neighborhood, street repairs that need to be done and pot holes that need to be filled, or for the rights of seniors around me, I want to know that my voice counts." 

Leonard Rowe, Safety & Training Manger, MV Transportation, Inc. and a member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. attended the workshop. "As a business professional, I have experienced the let down that so many have faced because they cannot get or keep viable employment; because of past mistakes in their criminal backgrounds. My goal is to take those, and only those that have demonstrated that they can walk the straight line for many years and demonstrate good decisions making skills, and help them clear the path to be productive citizens in Louisville, Kentucky.  My philosophy is simple “If we help ONE come up, we may be helping an entire family, and perhaps an entire generation,” stated Rowe.

The Shawnee JRI Pilot Project embodies a two-pronged approach which focuses on meeting the individual needs of the returning offender along with addressing the needs identified by residents to promote community revitalization.  "The Shawnee project is based on a model that encourages everyone in the community to get involved in the problem-solving process, working together to promote safet reduce recidivism, and strengthen our families," states Shawnee JRI Project Coordinator Debora McGill. 

Participants must be Shawnee residents returning to the community from either prison or jail; released from the Kentucky Department of Corrections (prison) or Louisville Metro Corrections (jail) returning to the Shawnee Community; meet eligibility requirements established by the Project Team; sex offenders and persons conveicted of any weapons-related offenses or crimes against children are excluded.  The Project Team includes Debora McGill, Project Coordinator, Dr. Phillip Hodge, Program Manager, Ben Johnson, Reinvestment Neighborhood Group Community Liason, and Steve Ingram, Case Manager.  For additional information on the Project, contact Debora McGill, 502-772-4666 or Ben Johnson, 502-409-2157. Photo:  Ben Johnson and Dr. Phillip Hodge

The next "Let My People Vote" Restoration of Voting Rights/Expungement Workshop will be held at Dismas Charities Portland, 15th & Lytle Street, Wednesday, August 25th.  Archia Kinnard, Asst. Supervisor, Expungement and Information Processing, Hall of Justice will be presenting on the criminal record expungement process.



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