Stop talking, start helping ex-offenders
On March 20, I attended a workshop at the Primo Center for Women & Children, where my employer, Mrs. Dolly Williams, the executive director, works so hard for the women and children at the Primo Center and for the community. The workshop was open to the community for anyone who wanted to attend. She tried to give information that the residents may need to better their life situations. We truly appreciate the judges, and state’s attorneys, Judge La Quietta, J. Hardy-Campbell, Judge Carol S. Howard, Assistant State’s Attorney Natalie Howse, and Assistant State’s Attorney Karen Travis, all taking time out of their busy schedule to bring the information to the community on learning our legal rights, knowing what cases can and can’t be expunged, the sealing of records, certificates of good conduct, child support, 4D Program, custody, order of protection, and the free legal help, sponsored by Sigma Gamma RHO Sorority Inc., Theta CHI Sigma Graduate Chapter.

Judge La Quietta Hardy-Campbell told us: Do not listen to “Pookie” because they don’t know the laws or have been to law school, nor do they have a law degree. You need to know where you are getting your information from, and if the information you are receiving is right.

At the end of the workshop, some of the participants left feeling hopeless because most of their cases could not be expunged, but I know the community can call their congressman, state senator, and state representative and let them know it’s up them to introduce or sponsor a bill for the expungement of some felony cases. This is the bottom line-if our lawmakers are serious about giving help to ex-offenders, then they have to give them chances to change their lives so they won’t have to keep making the Department of Corrections rich by being repeat offenders.

Mary Hartsfield
Vice president, Herdsman Corporation
Mother of ex-offenders


Smoke detectors can save lives
Ms. Jones, Thank you for your recent column “A working smoke detector will save your life”. Truly, in reference to me, it did not fall on deaf ears. Being a victim of three fires, this stirred up something in my spirit. I have smoke detectors in my home that are just sitting around because I can’t stand to hear that noise when too much smoke gets in the air from cooking. I was pregnant with my son when I was in the third fire, and he’s 26 years old now. Reading your article brought the memory back to me that the noise that I really can’t stand to hear is the sound of the siren from the fire truck coming to my house, the smell of smoke in my nostrils and the sound of my feet running to safety. All these came to mind when I was reading your column, and as my eyes filled with tears. I knew I had to do what I’m doing today. Put my smoke detectors up!!!
Thank you and God Bless!!!
Ernestine Funches