State Senator Harold Metts (D-Providence) joins the Roundtable this week as we discuss same-sex marriage, efforts to better re-integrate offenders once they leave prison, and new appointees to the state Board of Education.
State Senator Harold Metts (D-Providence) says the stigma of prison is so severe for former inmates that it's virtually impossible for them to find work after serving their time. He calls that a contributor to the disproportionately high rate of unemployment for minorities in poor parts of the capital city.
“The rate of incarceration is a big factor in the unemployment in certain parts of my district, because once you get that jail record, it ends up being a lifetime sentence, because you can’t get a job.”
Providence City Councilor Terry Hassett, who was among the earliest to emerge as a prospective candidate for secretary of state in 2014, says he'll decide by month's end whether to pursue a campaign for that office.
The field of potential candidates for SoS has changed considerably since Hassett's interest was first reported in mid-2011.
Robert Walsh, executive director of the National Education Association Rhode Island, is pouring cold water on one theory making the rounds -- that the House of Representatives will approve binding arbitration as part of a deal for the state Senate to pass same-sex marriage legislation.
The premise is a little funny on its face, since organized labor is a strong supporter of both issues. Still, stranger things have happened in the annals of Rhode Island politics.