UVA law students looking for more ways to help the formerly incarcerated
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - Students at the University of Virginia School of Law are helping people who have served their time get back on their feet.
“I’ve had family that faced incarceration, and so joining this clinic was something that was really important to me because I’ve seen the challenges that they faced coming home post-incarceration,” student Whitney Carter said.
“Whitney Carter, in particular, was deeply concerned about making sure we’re meeting the variety of legal barriers that people who were recently released from prison are confronting,” Director Kelly Orians said.
Carter says nearly half of American families have been affected by incarceration. In Virginia, the incarceration rate is 749 per 100,000 people.
Students have done civil rights restoration and expungement work, but want to do more to help. They say the key is to re-invest in resources, such as education, housing, employment, and health care.
“We partner with Home to Hope, which is a local re-entry organization that helps folks who are returning home,” Carter said. “Kind of help them get set up to come home and succeed.”
The project also involves a legal-needs assessment to find out more.
“We’re really just trying to get a sense for what the needs are for folks in the Charlottesville community,” Carter said.
The UVA School of Law will also be holding two events in April that support this initiative.
Photo Credit: Julia Davis
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