Job seekers applying for work with the state of Georgia will no longer need to disclose prior criminal convictions on their initial applications. This is a major development considering how hard it is for former prisoners to get a job. And the more difficult it is for them to acquire gainful employment the higher the possibility they will return to the lifestyle that lead them to prison in the first place.
Georgia is the first state in the South and 13th overall to adopt this policy. About 97 percent of those sentenced to prison in Georgia will eventually be released, and more than 1,300 re-enter society each month without employment, according to Deal’s criminal justice reform council. The council’s report said this was a barrier to employment that could exclude released inmates from consideration even if they are qualified for the job and the conviction has no bearing on the work. (Source: www.ajc.com)
Of course the implementation of this policy doesn't guarantee anyone a job, but it does open the door for those who previously would have been automatically excluded.
The timing of this order is great for an initiative that Kinsman Ministries (see Creating Prosperity in Urban Communities Through Jesus, Jobs, and Justice), which is planning to kick-off April 1st, called Greater Works Employee Development Initiative.
This is a new beginning, but it's only a beginning. Now the real work begins serving inner city men who have been underserved and overlooked in the job market.
Almost 15 years ago we heard a message preached on Ruth and Boaz, describing Boaz as a kinsman redeemer. The message struck my wife, Shawnice, deeply and left a lasting impression. Because of Boaz’s willingness to take on the responsibility of caring for his family, both Ruth and her mother-n-law were rescued from poverty and possible demise. Not long after hearing this message, God gave her the vision for Kinsman Ministries, and the development for the organization began.
A “kinsman redeemer” is one who has been prepared and positioned to rescue the family of God from the spiritual, economic, and social slavery systems of the world. The most known reference of a kinsman redeemer is found in the biblical book of Ruth, when Boaz purchased Naomi’s estate and married her daughter-in-law Ruth in order to redeem the property and rescue Ruth from a life of poverty and servitude. And of course Jesus was our ultimate Kinsman Redeemer, “… the firstborn among many brethren” (Romans 8:29).
From this truth Kinsman Ministries was birthed from our shared desire to be catalysts for faith-based, holistic personal, family, and community transformation. We are based in Atlanta, GA through a collaborative 501c3 partnership with FCS Urban Ministries. Although we had a soft launch last year, we are now moving forward full speed with the mission God has given us.
Redeemed to be Redeemers
The vision of Kinsman Ministries is the restoration and renewal of communities as places of purpose, peace, and prosperity for individuals and families to thrive as God intended in every area of their lives. We will pursue this vision through Christ-centered training and developmental programs and workshops that equip them to be empowered for success in every area of their lives.
We are Christian social entrepreneurs commissioned to use "Economic Evangelism" strategies to bring redemptive solutions to transform the mind, body, and spirit of people in specific communities that we are called to serve in. Essentially, we aspire to equip people to live abundantly now and for eternity.
Creating Generational Cycles of Godly Prosperity
We hear a lot of talk about breaking cycles of poverty. What we don't hear a lot about is creating cycles of prosperity in families and communities that are used to systemic poverty. This requires innovative, comprehensive strategies that involve spiritual and practical elements. At the heart of the "economic evangelism" focus that we have are spiritual and financial empowerment tools that meet the practical needs of people through holistic, faith-based business development and job skills training. The three driving principles that we focus on are:
We have already hit the ground running with our first major venture, Greater Works Community Employment Initiative (click here to learn more).
It's been a long time coming for us, but we're truly excited to be partnering with God and others to serve and empower people for His glory.
Please visit us online at www.mykinsman.org to learn more...
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