Local foundation aims to provide new jobs to those with a criminal record

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The Hidalgo County Office of Adult Parole and Probation, Workforce Solutions RGV and the attorney general's office are partnering with a foundation aimed at giving those with a criminal record a “second chance” at a career.

"A lot of the time people with these records end up facing these barriers," Choose to Change Foundation Founder and CEO Orlando Salinas said. “Key problems that people who have a record face are finding a job, you do a resume, do an application, [get asked] 'have you ever been convicted of a felony?' and that's automatically a red flag."

A former offender himself, Salinas lived in and out of the prison system from when he was 17 until he was 40. When he got out, he decided to make a change and create opportunities for others to do the same.

He created the foundation and spoke at several local prisons. He hosts a weekly mentorship program at The Door Christian Fellowship Church. 

The church will be the site of a job fair for ex-convicts. Dozens of businesses - several paying above minimum wage - will be ready to hire candidates on site based on who they currently are, not who they were in the past. 

Watch the video above for the full story.


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