Category Archives: post-conviction

2020 Just Leadership USA Leading With Conviction

Congratulations to our Executive Director, Sheba Williams (Nolef Turns) for being accepted into the 2020 JustLeadershipUSA Leading with Conviction Program. JustLeadershipUSA’s leadership development program is an intensive and dynamic cohort-based program designed to enhance the professional capacity of its participants. Each cohort consists of formerly incarcerated individuals with an already established leadership track record in their own communities. Over the course of one year, participants receive executive coaching, as well as training in community-building, policy advocacy and communications.


How Not to Let Criminal Conviction Ruin the Rest of Your Life

Category : post-conviction

A criminal conviction can haunt you for the rest of your life because your criminal record will contain detailed information about arrests and convictions. As a result, you may be refused housing, employment, educational opportunities, or a loan if you have a criminal conviction. Quite simply, if you have a conviction, you will not enjoy the same rights and benefits as other citizens. Your constitutional rights may also be affected when it comes to owning a gun or voting.

Employment Difficulties

It can be very difficult to land a job if you have a criminal record. Most employers are concerned about the liability of hiring you and the potential for you to commit another crime. It’s much easier for them to hire a candidate without a record. With that said, there are some things you can do to improve your odds.

It is important to search and apply for jobs that have a history of hiring people with criminal records. This can vary by state, so you have to do your research. (Nolef Turns is a good place to start!) You also have to be prepared to answer any questions concerning your conviction open and honestly. It is best to address this early in the interview process and explain how you have learned and moved on from that part of your past. Your resume should also highlight all of your strengths, skills, and abilities. You should also become familiar with your employment rights for the state that you live in.  

Loss of Assistance Programs

It can be difficult to find a place to live if you have a conviction. According to Crowell Law Offices, it’s fairly common for criminal convictions to result in the loss of access to certain government programs and housing opportunities. You should always be upfront with a potential landlord to improve your chances and to avoid paying fees and then being denied. It is important to look for a place to live at locations that have a history of renting to people with criminal records. Also, you should know the laws that pertain to your specific conviction because you may still be eligible for certain government assistance programs.  

Loss of Education Opportunities

If you have a criminal conviction, you may not be eligible for certain state or federal educational assistance. Some private student loan institutions may also deny you a loan. While this may be discouraging, you still have options. AC Online points out that some schools are better for applying to than others when you have a criminal record. You should always be upfront with the college or lending institution about your conviction to improve your chances. You should also be remorseful and humble. Having a job can also demonstrate that you are a productive member of society and have the ability to pay back any loans. Also, try to find as many respectable personal references as possible to ease the concerns of a lender or institution of higher learning.    

While a criminal conviction can negatively affect your life in many ways such as employment, housing, and education, you can still achieve success through hard work, honesty, and knowing your rights.


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