Dysfunctional Communities and Neighborhoods

Many ex-offenders come from, as well as return to, dysfunctional urban communities and neighborhoods. Disproportionately poor and with high crime and unemployment rates, these places offer few opportunities for ex-offenders to make it on the outside. Unemployed and surrounded by temptations to engage in illegal activities, many ex-offenders return to old habits and networks of friends that once got them into trouble.

The simple fact of employment life is this: You have to go where the jobs are - in another neighborhood, suburb, city, or town. If your re-entry thrusts you into a community with high unemployment and limited job opportunities, you need to seriously consider relocating to a community that has more opportunities for someone with your interests, skills, and abilities.

This may initially appear difficult to do, but each week thousands of people successfully make such employment relocation decisions.

Using a network of community-based organizations that provide assistance to ex-offenders, you eventually should be able to make such a move. Consider breaking out of this vicious circle by moving to a community of hope - a growing community with low unemployment and crime rates.

SOURCE: Adapted from Ron and Caryl Krannich, Ph.Ds, The Ex-Offender's Job Hunting Guide (Manassas Park, VA: Impact Publications). Copyright 2005. All rights reserved.

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