GOOD

After spending time behind bars, this ex-convict became a fantastic example of the power of second chances.

Everyone deserves a second chance.

Photo by Meesh/Flickr

An ex-convict’s inability to find gainful employment after being locked up is one of the biggest causes of recidivism.


When an ex-convict applies for a job, they are often denied employment because of their prior convictions. Without a steady paycheck and the stability provided by a regular job, ex-convicts are much more likely to reoffend.

According to a study by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, these factors result in the ex-offender population lowering the overall employment rate by .8 to .9%.

That’s why it’s so important for employers and government agencies to believe in giving ex-convicts a second chance.

Author and lawyer Brian Tannebaum shared an incredible story about the power of second chances and it’s going viral.

A few years back, Raymond Burns spent time behind bars for an unknown offense and lost custody of his son. After being released, his dream was to work for Sports Authority. Burns applied for a job at the retail store, and was honest about his criminal past. Because of his honesty, Burns was sure he wouldn’t get the job.

After the interview, he walked with his mother to a local Burger King where he heard they would be more accepting of his record.

While walking through the Burger King parking lot, Burns’ mother got the call that would change his life. He got the job at Sports Authority.

After being encouraged by his manager at Sports Authority, Burns started attending community college and went on to earn his Associate of Arts. He then earned his bachelor’s from Florida Atlantic University and even went to law school at Nova Southeastern University’s Shepard Broad College of Law, where he earned his law degree.

Tannebaum represented Burns to the Florida Bar Association and had the pleasure of telling Burns he passed the exam.

The Florida Bar Association congratulated Burns on his incredible achievement.

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