WTVM 4/18/14 Editorial: Job fair sets felons on the right path

(WTVM) - If you believe, as we do, that everyone deserves a second chance, then we urge you to support a new effort by the Georgia Department of Corrections and the state Board of Pardons and Paroles.

They recently held the first ever "offenders' job fair".

Hiring a convicted felon may sound like a radical notion. Most job applications routinely ask if applicants have been convicted of a felony, and if they answer yes, it's usually the end of the road for that applicant.

But what if that same job seeker was really serious about changing their life? Would you give him or her that chance?

Isabella Walker, a re-entry counselor with the Columbus Probation Office, hopes so. She came up with the idea of holding the special hiring event for felons and we endorse it.

Many felons made costly mistakes. They have hurt people or stolen property. Their crimes should never be minimized.

But if they have paid their debt and taken real steps to change their lives, they need our support to make the full transition to a responsible life.

The offenders' job fair gives them that chance. All the cards are on the table. The offenders admit their wrongs and promise to stay on a new, straight and lawful path.

It will be up to them to make the most of any new opportunity and prove they can be productive and play by the rules.

General Manager Holly Steuart brings two editorials a week to WTVM. If you would like to respond to an editorial, e-mail your response to WTVM Editorial Committee or write to:

WTVM Editorial Committee
1909 Wynnton Road
Columbus, GA 31906

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