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On November 18th Pulaski County Detention Center hosted its first Pre-Release Class since the Covid 19 Pandemic severely limited re-entry methods in local detention centers.

In collaboration with the Cumberlands Workforce Development Board community resource partners were allowed back inside the detention facility to speak to inmates face to face. In a classroom-style presentation, community partners were able to interact with inmates that were 30/60/90 days from release. Tools and resources for the successful reintegration into society were heard by over 20 inmates. Community Partners were able to tell their story, services they offer, and educate near-release inmates on the services available to assist in gaining employment, workforce training, clothing, medical treatment, housing, furthering their education, and many other resources.

“There’s no shame in taking a hand up. The shameful thing is hearing from all of these people that are willing to go to work to help you achieve success and not utilizing it,” said Aaron Poynter, Director of Reentry Programming. "Being locked up is a speed bump in life, not a roadblock. With all of these tools in front of you, you can make the rest of your life the best of your life.”

The Cumberlands Workforce Development Board and South Central Workforce Development Board's Community Support & Resources and Re-Entry & Transformational Employment divisions have a dedicated staff ready and equipped with valuable resources to assist individuals re-entering the workforce in our region.

Poynter continued “This education is essential in the successful reintegration of individuals. Returning to society from incarceration is difficult, but it can also be the starting point to building a life. We are blessed in this region to have so many organizations and individuals willing to offer that assistance and that hand-up. The essential component of this work is to make sure the individuals who need those resources know about those resources.”

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