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The Second Chance Club
The Second Chance Club: Hardship and Hope After Prison | Jason Hardy
4 posts | 2 read | 3 to read
A former parole officer shines a bright light on a huge yet hidden part of our justice system through the intertwining stories of seven parolees striving to survive the chaos that awaits them after prison in this illuminating and dramatic book. Prompted by a dead-end retail job and a vague desire to increase the amount of justice in his hometown, Jason Hardy became a parole officer in New Orleans at the worst possible moment. Louisianas incarceration rates were the highest in the US and his departments caseload had just been increased to 220 offenders per parole officer, whereas the national average is around 100. Almost immediately, he discovered that the biggest problem with our prison system is what we doand dont dowhen people get out of prison. Deprived of social support and jobs, these former convicts are often worse off than when they first entered prison and Hardy dramatizes their dilemmas with empathy and grace. Hes given unique access to their lives and a growing recognition of their struggles and takes on his job with the hope that he can change peoples fatesbut he quickly learns otherwise. The best Hardy and his colleagues can do is watch out for impending disaster and help clean up the mess left behind. But he finds that some of his charges can muster the miraculous power to save themselves. By following these heroes, he both stokes our hope and fuels our outrage by showing us how most offenders, even those with the best intentions, end up back in prisonor deadbecause the system systematically fails them. Our focus should be, he argues, to give offenders the tools they need to re-enter society which is not only humane but also vastly cheaper for taxpayers. As immersive and dramatic as Evicted and as revelatory as The New Jim Crow, The Second Chance Club shows us how to solve the cruelest problems prisons create for offenders and society at large.
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Pickpick

Interesting book that shared authors experience as a probation/parole officer in New Orleans. It was a good combination of personal stories and learned insight about the larger system. It gave a good look into probation and parole in general. Helped me to learn and think deeper about those things and systemic challenges.

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peaknit
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There are some very worthy thoughts here and as a probation agent, this book tells me maybe I don‘t have it all wrong

JenReadsAlot I'll have to check this out If you think I would like it. 2y
peaknit @JenReadsAlot I think you would, it clarifies how helpless my role is in some ways 😢 2y
14 likes2 comments
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peaknit
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Kind of wish I could sit here all day and read this book written by a probation officer but I have to go be a PO instead...

26 likes1 stack add
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Smrloomis
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This interview is pretty fascinating: On NPR‘s Fresh Air - Former Parole Officer On 'Hardship & Hope After Prison'. https://www.npr.org/2020/03/02/811251402/former-parole-officer-on-hardship-hope-...

Suet624 Thanks for the link. 3y
Smrloomis @Suet624 You‘re welcome! 3y
peaknit Thank you! I am a PO in the Midwest and curious about this book and how his story compares to my own. 2y
Smrloomis @peaknit sure! Would love to hear what you think. I haven‘t read his book yet but the interview made it sound pretty fascinating! 2y
56 likes4 comments