U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) will visit the Turning Point Applied Learning Center Wednesday afternoon to tour the facility and hear testimonials about the success of the Second Chance Act Program, which Portman sponsored as a U.S. congressman.
The Second Chance Act was first-of-its-kind legislation introduced by Portman and U.S. Rep. Danny Davis with bipartisan support and backed by leaders in law enforcement, corrections, courts, worker retraining, drug treatment and other areas, as described in an opinion piece written by Portman and Davis and published in Roll Call last year.
The act “represents an investment to leverage proven strategies to reduce recidivism, increase public safety and reduce costs for state and local governments. The bill provides crucial matching resources at a time when they are desperately needed. Today, federal and state prisons and jails hold a record 2.2 million people — about 1 in every 200 U.S. residents — and releases more than 630,000 individuals back to their communities annually. Unfortunately, most people face numerous challenges during that transition.”
Since the Second Chance Act was signed into law by President George W. Bush in 2008, more than 120,000 people returning home from incarceration have benefited from grants providing career training, mentoring, substance abuse treatment and other evidence-based re-entry programs, according to the opinion piece.
Portman’s visit Wednesday will include testimonials about the success of the Second Chance Act, and highlights of the program presented by Rhonda Fannin of the Highland County Office of Reentry Services, according to information provided by LuAnn Winkle, director of Turning Point.
Portman’s wife, Jane, toured Turning Point in 2013.
Portman is running for re-election this year. He has a challenger in the GOP primary, Don Eckhart. The winner will face the victor of the Democratic primary between Ted Strickland, Kelli Prather and P.J. Sittenfield.
Portman is the featured speaker at the Highland County Lincoln Day Dinner on Wednesday evening.