'New Year, Fresh Start' aims to help young adults gain employment, clear criminal record

Posted at 5:56 PM, Jan 16, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-16 22:15:14-05

MILWAUKEE -- Young adults who've had trouble with the law sometimes have trouble finding a job. Because of this, Kori Ashley, in partnership with the Juvenile Reentry Assistance Program (JRAP), hosted a youth resource fair Monday.

“It’s hard enough to get a job," Ashley said. "I always tell people, it’s hard enough to get a job in Milwaukee. It’s even harder when there’s things on your background report that you may not know are there," she continued.

Ashley is an attorney and a Milwaukee native. Her goal is to provide free legal services to young adults whose past offenses have now become barriers, blocking them from becoming gainfully employed.

“People make mistakes, but they don’t want these things to follow them forever," Ashley said. "We’re here to sign these folks up for free [legal] representation."

19-year-old Onyx Potts hopes to benefit from this representation. He said he frequents the Parklawn YMCA that hosted the fair, and decided to attend in hopes of getting his juvenile criminal record expunged.

“I had some personal issues going on in my juvenile years, and with me now about to be 20, this is like a second chance for me, a fresh start.”

Project JRAP is a community program funded through a grant. Project organizers plan to continue to provide free resources for young adults until March 2018.

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