In recognition of the challenges residents face when returning home from a period of incarceration, Mayor W. Reed Gusciora convened his Re-Entry Committee to address issues surrounding employment for residents with prior offenses on their records.
Comprised of experts from all facets of the criminal justice system and the realities of reintegrating back into the community, the Mayor’s Re-Entry Committee has been meeting since late 2019 to advise on appropriate hiring guidelines for applicants with previous criminal convictions. The impetus for this project was the change in the City of Trenton’s policy from a seven-year review period to a case-by-case basis. The Mayor’s Re-Entry Committee was formed to help develop a fair process and impartial criteria to allow all applicants the opportunity for gainful employment. The work of this Committee led to the creation of an office dedicated to a holistic approach to aiding residents returning from a period of incarceration.
In addition to the policy changes above, and in acknowledgment of the difficulties many returning residents face, Mayor Gusciora established the Mayor’s Office of Returning Citizens. The Office will serve as an entry point for residents in need of services, especially those searching for employment. In addition, the City has established partnerships with both the Mercer County One-Stop Career Center in Trenton and the Fresh Start program hosted by the Trenton Free Public Library.