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Former inmate gets a new start

Marvin Ross was released from prison after serving 20 and he has already landed a job.

A Jackson man gets a new lease on a new life after serving two decades in prison.

WJTV 12’s Shay O’Connor has an exclusive interview with Marvin Ross.

Many became aware of his story a few weeks ago.

Ross was released from prison in March after serving 20 years for dealing crack, cocaine.

At the time of the interview, all he wanted was to find a job.

“When they have that question. ‘Have you been convicted’ and you tell them the truth, it’s hard for them to call back. Give us a chance. We made mistakes, but don’t continue to convict us.”

In June, Marvin shared his journey with WJTV. He was at a former inmate job re-entry fair in Jackson.

Days after the interview aired, Ross found a job. 

Today he is happy about his new start.

“I can’t right my wrongs. I can’t. I look at it like a basketball game, the first half. I lost the first half. The second half this is where I do my best. Put my best foot forward and win the game.”

It is no secret former inmates have a harder time finding a job after they get out.

According to prisonpolicy.org, they are unemployed at a rate 27 percent higher than the total US unemployment rate at any period in history.

Ridgeland’s Goodwill, President of Marketing Janet Spears says, “Getting a job when you come out of incarceration is very hard because of laws, a lot of businesses don’t hire people with felonies. That’s what Goodwill does, we believe in giving a hand up to get you back on your feet.”

As a Donation Technician, Ross says he is able to put some of his skills to use.. while also planning out his future goals.

He had a message for other former inmates who may find it hard starting over after being released from prison.

“One thing I’d say is don’t give up. don’t give up. never give up. never settle. they may tell you no today, but tomorrow it may be a yes.”

Ross says he just hopes more people like him get a chance after paying a debt.

Ross says his future plan is to own his own food truck.

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