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Dane County Launches Efforts to Connect Teens with Jobs, Put Former Offenders to Work

For more information contact:

Joshua Wescott, Office of the County Executive (608) 267-8823 or cell (608) 669-5606

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 5/12/2008

Issued By: County Executive
View only releases from County Executive
New County Initiatives Act on Recommendations of Joint Gang Task Force

(Madison)….Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk announced a pair of new county initiatives today to help middle and high school students find jobs and put people recently released from jail to work, reducing chances they’ll re-offend.

Falk and the county board put $137,000 in the 2008 county budget to fund the new programs that act on recommendations made in late 2007 by the Joint Gang Task Force.

“This new effort will help keep young people who face so many challenges and outside influences on the right track,” Falk said. “It’s important to give kids valuable skills so they steer clear of peer pressures and stay out of trouble.”

Falk was joined at a news conference Monday by Luis Yudice, co-chair of the Joint Gang Task Force and Director of Security for the Madison School District.

Dane County will contract with Commonwealth Development and Operation Fresh Start for the Youth Employment Initiative. They are receiving $87,495 to help low income and at-risk youth ages 14-18 improve their job skills and assist with job placement and mentoring services.

The Madison Area Urban Ministry will work in collaboration with the Madison Apprenticeship Program and the Urban League of Greater Madison on the initiative to help those who spend time in jail find and keep a job once they’re released. They’ll work with individuals recently released from jail to help them increase earned income potential.

“After leaving jail in order to succeed you need a job. Getting a job is not only good for their families but it also makes our communities safer,” Falk said.

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