HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – April is “Second Chance Month,” a time to reaffirm the importance of helping people re-enter society after being incarcerated.

The organization, Western Mass CORE is doing just that, partnering with other agencies like Mass Hire of Holyoke to host a criminal record expungement and sealing clinic as well as a CORI-friendly job fair at Holyoke Community College.

The goal is to provide an opportunity for people with criminal records to get free legal advice, obtain a free copy of their offender record information and connect with potential employers.

“Having a criminal record can be a very significant barrier to getting employment, to getting housing, services. So this event is really a celebration of second chances,” said HCC Professor of Criminal Justice and Western Mass CORE Coordinator, Nicole Hendricks.

Free information sessions are being held by CORI Assistance program (CAP) from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. via Zoom on following dates:

  • April 12, 2023
  • May 10, 2023
  • June 14, 2023

To attend an information session, make sure to register here. Once registered, log onto Zoom to attend the session. A link will be provided through registration.

Western Mass CORE is also hosting multiple spring and summer events for children and families impacted by the criminal legal system at the Holyoke Public Library:

  • Story Time – Tue. 4/25 at 6 p.m.
  • Story Time – Tue. 5/16 at 6 p.m.
  • Game Night – Thur. 5/25 at 6 p.m.
  • Craft Hour – Tue. 6/6 at 4 p.m.
  • Craft Hour – Wed. 8/30 at 4 p.m.
  • Game Night – Thur. 9/14 at 6 p.m.

If you missed the event, or need additional information on Mass Hire of Holyoke, please visit here.

For more information on Western Mass CORE, please visit here.