Ninety-five percent of prisoners eventually leave prison and return home—to what?
Members of one construction association think they might have an answer to that question, at least for some ex-offenders.
The Home Builders Institute recently met with city officials in New Orleans to propose a program to train former inmates for jobs in the construction industry. And the idea just might be the beginning of a beautiful relationship, because New Orleans still needs a lot of rebuilding and Louisiana has the highest incarceration rate in the nation, a whopping 48 percent above the national average.
Advocates for ex-offenders and corrections officials alike say that options such as education, career training and mentoring for those recently released from prison are key to preventing a relapse into crime.
“We don’t want to just depend on a revolving door,” said Jane Browning of the International Community Corrections Association. “We want people to invest their money in what works.”