(Photo by Shawn Fink) For Osby Bryant, $35 is a lifeline. That’s how much the federal food stamp program sends every month to the Shreveport native, who spent 43 years in prison for murder. Now free on parole in New Orleans, the 70-year-old Bryant is slowly rebuilding his life. He works from 5 a.m. to noon every day as a carpenter while he saves money for an apartment. “When you get out, you’re struggling to make ends meet. So you need all the little help you can get,” he sai
When the executive director of a New Orleans nonprofit dedicated to helping people after they leave prison asks for grant money, she sometimes hits a snag. Potential donors will tell her they can’t give money to a group that’s staffed by the formerly incarcerated. One even rescinded an offer that already had been made. “It sort of felt like: What along the way made you not realize who we are?” said Kelly Orians, the executive director of Rising Foundations. But Rising Foundat
Antonio Montgomery was released from prison a little more than two months ago. He served 14 years following armed robbery and simple kidnapping charges. Like so many other inmates, when he was released he was given a $10 check and bus ticket. One out of every two people released from prison in our state will return within five years, according to the Louisiana Department of Corrections. However, since 2014 one New Orleans non-profit has been working to change the trend. Now,
For decades, the state of Louisiana has been known as the incarceration capital of America. But over the past year, the state has been trying to shed that reputation with new reforms that decrease the prison population and save money. William Brangham went to find how it’s playing out for former prisoners, in a story produced by Frank Carlson in partnership with the Pulitzer Center. Read the full transcript HERE.