Welcome

Welcome To Community Success Initiative

Community Success Initiative (CSI) was founded as a non-profit corporation in May 2004 with a vision to create communities where people discover their potential, set worthy goals for their lives, and take action in a positive way,  with an emphasis on men and women who are transitioning from prison and jail, or who otherwise find themselves entangled in the criminal justice system.

Our Focus

  1. Helping formerly incarcerated persons get back on their feet.

  2. Reducing crime in the community.

 

CSI receives the City of Raleigh Human RIghts Organization Award!  Read about it here and view the photo gallery.

 

“Z. Smith Reynolds (ZSR) Foundation features CSI in recent newsletter..”

Read the ZSR article at: http://www.zsr.org/impact/103/community-success-initiative

                         

          Donate Now, If you are for Second Chances

Your generosity helps to continue the work of Community Success Initiative. You can use your debit or credit card to make a tax-deductible donation today and help support our work. A donation of any amount would go a long way. You can also mail your donation to Community Success Initiative PO Box 61114 Raleigh, NC 27661. Please feel free to pass along this email to others in your network. Thank you for your ongoing support.

You can use your debit or credit card to make a tax-deductible donation today!

 

Download our 501(c)(3) Form

 

 

Billion Dollar Divide: Virginia's Sentencing, Corrections and Criminal Justice Challenge

http://www.justicepolicy.org/news/7515

"Billion Dollar Divide points to racial disparities, skewed fiscal priorities, and missed opportunities for improvements through proposed legislation, and calls for reforms to the commonwealths sentencing, corrections and criminal justice system. While other states are successfully reforming their sentencing laws, parole policies and drug laws, Virginia is lagging behind and spending significant funds that could be used more effectively to benefit public safety in the commonwealth." And, much of the same could be said for North Carolina. Click here for the detailed report PDF file which will open in a new window.

 

 Sheldon Howard and Wheels4Hope

 

NC-NAACP and HKonJ

More than 80,000 North Carolinians Rallied Outside State Capitol to set Justice-Driven Agenda at Moral March on Raleigh. Click on this link for more information on NC-NAACP and HKonJ for 2014 and 2013 http://communitysuccess.org/naacp-hkonj

 

Second Chance Lobby Day a Success!

Second Chance Lobby Day II -- NC Legislature April 23, 2013

Click for details to Second Chance Lobby Day II 2013!

 

Fair Criminal Justice System | A Reason to Attend the Moral March on Raleigh

Dennis Gaddy addresses recent attempts by Legislature to bar the formerly incarcerated from the right to vote.

 

Georgia's JUSTICE REINVESTMENT INITIATIVE STATE ASSESSMENT REPORT

Urban Institute: pdf file report on the state of Georgia's efforts to remodel their prison sentencing program.  Click here for the PDF report.

 

Proposed Bill 5 year Waiting for felons to vote in North Carolina

The bill’s primary sponsor, North Carolina Republican Senator E.S. “Buck” Newton of Wilson, said he considers the measure a compromise. “The long and short of it is the vast majority of people I have spoken to regarding election laws think convicted felons should not be able to vote at all,” said Newton, a Republican who represents Wilson, Nash and Johnston counties. “I think a person can make a mistake, get their lives together and show themselves to be upstanding citizens. A five-year time frame is a reasonable period to show that.”

“This is essentially voter suppression for African American males who have been most disproportionately impacted by and entangled in the criminal justice system,” said Dennis Gaddy, director of the Community Success Initiative, a Raleigh-based nonprofit that advocates on behalf of ex-offenders at the General Assembly. “Taking away the vote from the formerly incarcerated has never been designed as a punitive measure, but as a way to suppress the vote.” 

For the article at the Raleigh News and Observer regarding North Carolina Senate Bill 721

To see the content of North Carolina Senate Bill 721 bill.

To see the sponsors of North Carolina Senate Bill 721 bill.

 

SECOND CHANCE ALLIANCE: Speak Out Against Felony Disenfranchisement to Preserve Our Voice

Many of us have criminal records and confront these barriers directly. Others of us have witnessed family members and neighbors struggle against these barriers. Others come to the Alliance as service providers and advocates. From these diverse backgrounds, we have joined together and with one collective voice to say, “I’m for Second Chances!” Click to read the Second Chance Alliance piece

 

PNC Bank/CSI  Financial Management class.

Photo of  our 1st  PNC Bank/CSI  Financial Management class on  April 22nd 2013, with Diana Benthall,  PNC Branch Manager, Ashton Square, Raleigh, NC (and CSI's Banker). PNC conducts monthly workshops for CSI clients.

 

Dennis Gaddy interview with NC Policy Watch Chris Fitzsimon  

Dennis Gaddy discusses Second Chances and helping formerly incarcerated people get back on their feet during an interview with NC Policy Watch Chris Fitzsimon. Click on the player arrow button below to play the podcast,  or click for a direct link to the interview.

 

 

To Build a Better Criminal Justice System

In a new publication of The Sentencing Project 25 leading scholars and practitioners have contributed essays on their strategic vision for the next 25 years of criminal justice reform. Issues addressed in the collection include racial justice strategies, linking public health and criminal justice reform, challenging the war on drugs, and the viability of fiscal pressures as a focus for reform. Click here to read this valuable report. 

 

Latest addition to CSI programs - CSI Legal Services Project

Community Success Initiative is piloting a direct legal services initiative to formerly incarcerated men and women or those currently entangled in the criminal justice system. We will work to provide legal remedies such as securing a driver’s license, obtaining certificates of relief, creating and/or modifying child support orders, and occupational licenses. Click here to read about this important project.

Notice to the blind and visually impaired.

We are trying to be 100% in compliance with the Disabilities Act. If you experience any problem with our website or any of our links, please email us at mailto:inquiry@communitysuccess.org  Thank you for your feedback.

 

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) new rules regarding the hiring of the formerly incarcerated.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission voted to pass updated guidelines on the hiring of individuals with criminal records.  The updated guidance provides employers with greater clarity on the fair use of background checks, in order to help the vast majority of employers who are often unaware of federal civil rights laws and how criminal record based discrimination can serve as a surrogate for race based discrimination.  The guidance will also go a long way to educate jobseekers with criminal records who face tremendous challenges in navigating the expanded use of criminal background checks for employment in today’s competitive job market. Click here to read about the changes.

 

Click for our ban-the-box page.

 

Reducing Employment Barriers for People with Arrest Records and Convictions - National Employment Law Project (NELP).

Please check out this powerful Power Point presentation from Michelle Natividad Rodriguez,  National Employment Law Project,  that addresses reducing employment barriers for people with arrests and convictions. Please click for the presentation and  for the NELP homepage

 

 

Michelle Alexander, Author of "The New Jim Crow - Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness", addresses the devastating impact that the mass incarceration of Black men is having on communities.

For a study guide to this video, we have an abriged 12 page version of "The New Jim Crow" that is free, or for the complete study guide, that is complete at 75 pages, which costs $10,  it is found at: http://www.sdpconference.info

“This groundbreaking book illuminates black Americans’ lingering suspicions of the criminal justice system. The false imprisonment of black men has its history in an ignominious economic system that depended on coerced labor and didn’t flinch from savagery toward fellow human beings. Blackmon’s exhaustive reportage should put an end to the oft-repeated slander that black Americans tend toward lawlessness.” - See more at: http://www.slaverybyanothername.com/the-book/reviews/more-reviews/#sthash.V3jkoOXH.dpuf

Slavery by Another Name: The Documentary Film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and had its national broadcast on PBS on Feb. 13, 2012. Check with your local PBS station for rebroadcasts. You can also watch the film online at the link below, or go behind the scenes with “The Making of Slavery by Another Name.” - See more at: http://www.slaverybyanothername.com/pbs-film/#sthash.oWJkfxmL.dpuf

Slavery by Another Name: The Documentary Film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and had its national broadcast on PBS on Feb. 13, 2012. Check with your local PBS station for rebroadcasts. You can also watch the film online at the link below, or go behind the scenes with “The Making of Slavery by Another Name.” - See more at: http://www.slaverybyanothername.com/pbs-film/#sthash.oWJkfxmL.dpuf

Slavery by Another Name: The Documentary Film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and had its national broadcast on PBS on Feb. 13, 2012. Check with your local PBS station for rebroadcasts. You can also watch the film online at the link below, or go behind the scenes with “The Making of Slavery by Another Name.” - See more at: http://www.slaverybyanothername.com/pbs-film/#sthash.oWJkfxmL.dpuf

Slavery by Another Name: The Documentary Film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and had its national broadcast on PBS on Feb. 13, 2012. Check with your local PBS station for rebroadcasts. You can also watch the film online at the link below, or go behind the scenes with “The Making of Slavery by Another Name.” - See more at: http://www.slaverybyanothername.com/pbs-film/#sthash.oWJkfxmL.dpuf

 

Slavery by another name

Slavery by Another Name: The Documentary Film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and had its national broadcast on PBS on Feb. 13, 2012. Check with your local PBS station for re-broadcasts. You can also watch the film online at the link below, or go behind the scenes with “The Making of Slavery by Another Name.” - See more at: http://www.slaverybyanothername.com/pbs-film/

Melissa Harris-Perry and her panelists talk about where politics and the prison system converge in deciding who gets to vote, and the outcomes of the decision.

Click to view the media link

 

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Bryan Stevenson: Ending the Politics of Fear and Anger


... and click to visit the Equal Justice Initiative, where various issues such as the death penalty, Incarceration of youth in adult prisons,  sentencing reform, race and poverty are discussed. 

 

Please see below a variety of CSI topics of interest: