Statement of Senator Barack Obama on the President Signing the Second Chance Act into Law
U.S. Senator Barack Obama released the following statement today on President Bush signing the Second Chance Act (H.R. 1593) into law. Obama is a cosponsor of this legislation.
"Every year, too many American lives are permanently disrupted when they enter the criminal justice system. In many cases, the lack of job training and support programs in prison means that those who are released fail to become fully rehabilitated. Too many get lost to poverty and unemployment, and some go on to commit more crimes. This must stop. The costs of crimes are high, but failing to break this cycle costs us even more.
"We must create a pathway for people coming out of jail to get the jobs, skills, and education they need to leave a life of crime and effectively support their families. That means supporting effective training and mentoring programs to help people transition into jobs. That means reevaluating the laws against hiring people with a criminal record so that we don't foreclose effective ways to bring people out of poverty and deter them from committing new crimes. That also means giving former prisoners parenting skills so they can give their children the sense of hope and opportunity that so many of them were denied.
"The President took an important step today by signing the Second Chance Act into law. I supported this legislation when it was introduced and I am proud that it will provide the necessary support to give former prisoners a second chance at a meaningful life. I commend Congressman Danny Davis and Senator Joe Biden for their leadership on moving this bill through Congress."