Our desire to foster a greater relationship with the community includes a broad vision for providing our residents opportunities to change the narrative around incarceration and reentry. Changing the narrative can look different from person to person, but it begins with small stories of transformation and initiative.

As I think about this, I am reminded of a resident in our Rochester Supportive Housing who has spent the summer advocating for (and acquiring) speed limit signs in the community to provide greater protection for local families and their children from speeding cars. After noticing the prevalence of adolescents who needed to cross the street in order to access the neighborhood park, this individual (named James) witnessed the presence of reckless drivers who posed a danger to those in the area. Determined to make a change, James took it upon himself to find a solution to this concerning issue. This would require a visit to City Hall to ascertain potential ways in which to address the problem. After visiting City Hall to draw attention to this issue, James was able to obtain a handful of speed/caution warning signs! These signs were quickly placed along the streets near our transitional housing by James.

In the weeks and months since James placed these signs in the neighborhood, there has been a noticeable reduction in speeding cars. Residents of the neighborhood have also voiced their appreciation for the signage and the increased safety that it has produced for their children and families.

This is just one example of community engagement and changing the narrative!

Thanks James for contributing to the Rochester community, for identifying a concern and ultimately, for taking initiative to do something about it yourself!