Greater Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce hosts presentation on employment after incarceration

Published: Feb. 24, 2021 at 4:04 PM AKST
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - The Greater Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce held its weekly business presentation on Tuesday, February 23rd, with the topic “Employment for Returning Citizens: Life After Incarceration.”

The presentation, the second in the Fairbanks Chamber’s Diversity and Inclusion series, featured speakers Linda Setterberg, Reentry Services Director with the Fairbanks Reentry Coalition, and Paul Meyer from the Alaska Department of Labor.

The presentation discussed the concept of reintegration into the community after incarceration. “The Reentry Coalition’s mission is to create a community where returning citizens have the keys to successfully acieve their personal goals,” Setterberg said.

According to Setterberg, the Reentry Coalition is currently working on a series of interviews with individuals who have overcome the obstacles to reintegrating into their community.

Setterberg went on to discuss provisions in Alaska law which limit or prohibit those who have been convicted of a crime from accessing certain rights, benefits and opportunities. “These collateral consequences create barriers to employment,” she explained.

The presentation provided the statistic that one in three adults in the U.S. possess a criminal history, and on average 700 individuals return to Fairbanks from incarceration each year.

Meyer presented on benefits for employers that come from hiring those who have a criminal history, including tax credits.

The Fairbanks Chamber will not hold its weekly virtual luncheon next week, and will host Foundation Health Partners for an update on March 9th.

More information can be found on their website.

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