Thursday, November 27, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Goodbye "ex-offenders," hello "returning citizens"

On Mayor Nutter's behalf, Councilman W. Wilson Goode Jr. today introduced a bill to change all references to "ex-offenders" to "returning citizens" in the Philadelphia Code.

Goodbye "ex-offenders," hello "returning citizens"

The R.I.S.E. program sponsored a job fair for people with criminal records at the Pennsylvania Convention Center on Tuesday, July 30, 2013. ( ALEJANDRO A. ALVAREZ / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER )
The R.I.S.E. program sponsored a job fair for people with criminal records at the Pennsylvania Convention Center on Tuesday, July 30, 2013. ( ALEJANDRO A. ALVAREZ / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER ) DN

On Mayor Nutter's behalf, Councilman W. Wilson Goode Jr. today introduced a bill to change all references to "ex-offenders" to "returning citizens" in the Philadelphia Code.

Nutter also signed an executive order slimming the official name of the R.I.S.E. program from the Office of Re-integration Services for Ex-Offenders to the Office of Re-integration Services. 

"The commonly used term ‘ex-offender’ carries with it a stigma which may increase the challenges these citizens face, while the term 'returning citizen' more appropriately focuses on their engagement in the process of reintegration," Nutter said in a statement. "As a government, the City of Philadelphia must do what it can to help their transition.”

Goode said the change will help alter "the general public’s perception of people who have served their time, paid their debt to society, and want to re-enter our City’s communities as hard-working, productive members."

About this blog
Chris Brennan, a native Philadelphian and graduate of Temple University, joined the Daily News in 1999. He has written about SEPTA, the Philadelphia School District, the legalization of casino gambling, state government, the mayor, the governor, City Council and political campaigns. E-mail tips to brennac@phillynews.com
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Jenny DeHuff is a 2005 graduate of the University of Rhode Island, where she cut her teeth in journalism. A South Philly transplant from New England, she joined the Daily News City Hall Bureau in 2013. For the past several years, she has worked as an investigative reporter exposing corruption in suburban politics, covering sometimes ghastly criminal court cases and following the people’s money and how its spent. In addition to being a dogged news hound, she enjoys reading and writing about travel, animals, Irish whiskey and aviation. E-mail tips to dehuffj@phillynews.com
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