The business and legal reports indicate that careers in this field will continue to grow over the next 10 years, placing a demand on this nation, such that, people are being recruited abroad to fulfill employment here in the United States.
The overall poverty rate and the incidence of poverty remain high, during a sluggish economy. The average poverty rate for California remains in double digits, along with the housing crisis. Many poor families are not receiving the support they need. Often times, people are turned away for services because they do not meet certain company profiles or criteria. VV-CDC recognizes that many of these community members are or have been on probation or parole; disadvantaged youth; homeless; and the long term unemployed. The lack of education leads to disparate measures, hopelessness, and poverty. College is a choice that many have not considered until it’s too late. According to the latest corrections figures, for the first time in U.S. history, one (1) out of every one hundred (100) adults are in prison.
According to the associated press report of February 28, 2008, the prison population has reached 2,319,258 inmates at the start of 2008. Whether on probation or parole, someone, walking through these doors may have been incarcerated at some point. Vocational training or work programs for this population is a challenge for our community. Recognizing the influence of drugs on crime, more efforts will be in place in expanding drug abuse treatement. This community is plagued with a number of issues facing the high-risk groups. All of the factors named in this narrative are symptoms of this community. To say that our focus is going to be on one group is difficult to divide. However, it is our intent to deal with the ex-gang members, long term unemployed, and parolees at certain levels of risk factors.
The picture today, for this community, is that many people have been or currently are under some type of supervision or assistance, and therefore the dilemma for VV-CDC becomes “how to” assimilate people back into the mainstream via the work force and education, after being either on welfare for a number of years, homeless, on SSI, general relief, and/or in prison?
Re-entry is not the most favorable subject of today, but almost impossible to avoid or ignore when the above mentioned groups are encountered. A full service resource center, copying service, computer lab, and other re-entry type services must be considered to address these populations that exist in and around the Vermont/Manchester area.