Tuesday, June 15, 2010

We'll Never Give Up!

These are tough economic times and people need jobs!

Okay…that isn’t exactly a shocker of a statement. We’re all living in this world, and the downturn has affected every one of us.

My mom has a friend who is proud to brag about the fact that she’s been unaffected by the financial meltdown. Several months ago Mom talked to her friend on the phone for the first time in a couple of years and the first words out of the friend’s mouth were, “I still have all my money!”

It sounds like money is a top priority in that woman’s life. Well…good for her.

But I digress. MOST people are struggling and many people need jobs!

My son Dallas is 25 years old and he (like all of us) has made a few mistakes. Many of us were never caught. Not only was he caught, but he also took personal responsibility and never, ever ran from the consequences. I’m proud of my son.

Unfortunately, he is having an extremely difficult time finding a job. I wish somebody would give this guy a break—a chance.

When my son was released from prison it was clear that he would need financial, emotional, physical, and spiritual support. Tom and I have stood by him, as has most of the family, and Dallas is so very appreciative.

There are agencies in and around our town whose mission it is to help men and women just out of prison. They teach life skills, help them get an education, and aid in the job search. Hope Now For Youth, and Teen Challenge are two organizations that have a particularly good reputation and success record. Sadly, however, they wouldn’t help Dallas.

If Dallas had been a gang member or a murderer he would’ve had agencies clamoring to get him into their program so they could turn him into one of their success stories. Dallas’s crime was too severe for some agencies to give him a hand, and not nearly bad enough for other organizations to invest the time in him.

My son has been off parole for 5 months, but his record will follow him for the rest of his life (although there is hope that it will be expunged someday). This is what I want you to know—if Dallas had never been arrested, he probably would have died from a drug overdose. He’s meant to be here.

I write this post not just for Dallas, but also for all the men and women with criminal records who can’t get a job. We complain about the revolving doors on prisons and county jails. It seems that “the system” isn’t incapable of turning men and women around.

What do we expect? Society won’t accept them and won’t give them a job. Many newly released prisoners have nowhere to go. Their families have long ago given up on them, the privately run programs refuse to help them, and the government has run out of money. People need food in their belly and shelter from the cold. Jail looks pretty good if you have nothing else.

Dallas WILL thrive and he’ll be stronger, better, and more talented because he’ll have to work harder than most. I know he can’t do it alone, however, so we’ll never give up on him.

That’s how we roll.

1 comment:

  1. Fed Ex is hiring dock workers...maybe that would work for him?