Organization hosts legal support clinic for former inmates
CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Days after state leaders announced South Carolina had the fewest number of inmates returning to prison after three years in the nation, a free clinic to help connect previously incarcerated individuals with attorneys happened in North Charleston on Thursday.
Root & Rebound and its partner program, Soteria, hosted the clinic at Mount Moriah Missionary Baptist Church from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Attendees were able to speak with an attorney to learn about their legal rights with an arrest or conviction record.
Attorneys were also able to provide legal advice and assistance related to expungements, pardons, parole and probation, family and children, and housing.
South Carolina Department of Corrections Director Bryan Stirling announced Tuesday the Palmetto State had a three-year recidivism rate of 21.9 percent, based on a study from the Virginia Department of Corrections.
A recidivism rate is the percentage of inmates who wind up being convicted of another crime and returning to prison.
Root & Rebound, the organization that hosted North Charleston’s free clinic, began in California and expanded to South Carolina in 2019.
The organization said they were able to take the three-pronged model of direct legal services, policy, and education and tailor that model to South Carolina’s specific needs.
The organization has since partnered with Soteria, a men’s reentry program led by Greenville-native Jerry Blassingame, to form what is called the Second Chance Justice Collaborative.
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