What's Working? Cincinnati Works Helps Former Outlaws Find Work - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

What's Working? Cincinnati Works Helps Former Outlaws Find Work

Bells are ringing at Cincinnati Works because one of their members just found work.

"I am very proud," said Behavioral Health Specialist Jacque Edmondson. "I'm proud of the work because I think giving someone a job is a great gift."

In September they rang the bell for Michael Powers. Restaurant Depot hired him just five days after he graduated from their job program.

"My job? Oh I love my job, love it. I'm more of a mentor, one of the oldest guys there," Powers said.

Powers' wisdom doesn't just come from age. He just quit his old job.

"I used to be a drug dealer. I though it was what I wanted to do. but after a while it got old. Prison life is just no life," Powers said. "You might as well put someone in a box."

Cincinnati Works created the Phoenix Job Program to help people off the streets and into the office. The program's week-long workshop teaches job skills like interviewing and writing resumes. More importantly, it encourages those on the wrong side of the law to do right.

Edmondson knows the economy is tough. That's why she gives her members tough love.

"If you want to help yourself, we're here for you. if you want to be picked up and coddled, we don't do that," Edmondson said.

Edmondson has worked at Cincinnati Works for ten years. But she's glad most of her members have moved on.

"I've had some members, you wouldn't recognize them today. When they came through they were critical, angry, had a negative world view, belligerent. [That] to getting an apartment, having a job, and getting a degree."

Powers is telling his story to new Phoenix members in hopes they write a better one.

"I'm an open book. I remember my mistakes so I don't repeat them. You know this is where I came from, if I can make it anyone can make it."

- Stephanie Woods

Top Stories

SLIDESHOW: Cat Canyon

Updated:

Click to see images from Cat Canyon More>>

  • NEWSMore>>

  • The Latest: Korea's Lee wins gold in men's mass start

    The Latest: Korea's Lee wins gold in men's mass start

    Friday, February 23 2018 8:14 PM EST2018-02-24 01:14:57 GMT
    Saturday, February 24 2018 8:58 AM EST2018-02-24 13:58:13 GMT
    (AP Photo/Michael Sohn). Driver Nadezhda Sergeeva and Anastasia Kocherzhova of the Olympic Athletes of Russia take a curve in their third heat during the women's two-man bobsled final at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Wednesday, ...(AP Photo/Michael Sohn). Driver Nadezhda Sergeeva and Anastasia Kocherzhova of the Olympic Athletes of Russia take a curve in their third heat during the women's two-man bobsled final at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Wednesday, ...

    The International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation says it isn't commenting yet on an alleged anti-doping rule violation by Russian women's bobsledder Nadezhda Sergeeva.

    More >>

    The International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation says it isn't commenting yet on an alleged anti-doping rule violation by Russian women's bobsledder Nadezhda Sergeeva.

    More >>
  • The Latest: Official: 18 soldiers killed in west Afghanistan

    The Latest: Official: 18 soldiers killed in west Afghanistan

    Saturday, February 24 2018 1:15 AM EST2018-02-24 06:15:26 GMT
    Saturday, February 24 2018 8:57 AM EST2018-02-24 13:57:23 GMT
    (AP Photo/Massoud Hossaini). Security forces inspect the site of a suicide bombing in the diplomatic area of capital Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018.  Interior ministry spokesman Najib Danish said several people were wounded in Saturday's a...(AP Photo/Massoud Hossaini). Security forces inspect the site of a suicide bombing in the diplomatic area of capital Kabul, Afghanistan, Saturday, Feb. 24, 2018. Interior ministry spokesman Najib Danish said several people were wounded in Saturday's a...

    Afghan official says at least three security personnel have been killed in separate suicide bombing attacks in southern Helmand province.

    More >>

    Afghan official says at least three security personnel have been killed in separate suicide bombing attacks in southern Helmand province.

    More >>
  • Trump talks new gun measures, gun owners talk 'betrayal'

    Trump talks new gun measures, gun owners talk 'betrayal'

    Saturday, February 24 2018 1:15 AM EST2018-02-24 06:15:31 GMT
    Saturday, February 24 2018 8:56 AM EST2018-02-24 13:56:55 GMT
    (AP Photo/Evan Vucci). In this Feb. 22, 2018, photo, President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with state and local officials to discuss school safety in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington. Trump could face a backlash from gun rig...(AP Photo/Evan Vucci). In this Feb. 22, 2018, photo, President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting with state and local officials to discuss school safety in the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington. Trump could face a backlash from gun rig...
    President Donald Trump could face a backlash from gun rights advocates by voicing support for gun control measures.More >>
    President Donald Trump could face a backlash from gun rights advocates by voicing support for gun control measures.More >>
Powered by Frankly