Employment and expungement resources to be offered at Port City United’s Fresh Chance Friday

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — Port City United” is gearing up to host its inaugural “Fresh Chance Friday”. The free event will connect people with legal assistance, and employment opportunities.

Fresh Chance Friday will be held at the MLK Center in Wilmington on Friday, January 27. There will be representatives from local career development programs, more than a dozen businesses, and county departments to connect attendees with employment resources and potential job openings.

“The reason why we call it Fresh Chance is because –you know, some people just need a fresh chance, and a fresh start, and there is obstacles and very high fences, sometimes that get in the way of them to be able to get across that finish line, and one of those big fences is legal,” said Cedric Harrison, Port City United director.

Legal Aid of North Carolina will also be on hand to offer no-cost legal consultations, and help people determine if they are eligible for record expungement, which can be a potential employment obstacle.

“We want to be able to bring all of things and opportunities that people may know about, but don’t know how to get contact to, –or may not know about at all, to be able to get out all of the information and even start the process right then and there on the spot,” said Harrison.

Yolanda Bostic, a case manager with Wilmington non-profit Leading Into New Communities, or “LINC”, said she began the record expunction process last year through Legal Aid of North Carolina after seeing a flyer in her coworkers office.

“I’m in the home stretch. Like I said, the process is a little extensive. It takes about nine months total. It’s exciting, it’s liberating,” said Yolanda Bostic, LINC Pathway Home Case Manager.

She said her record was impacting her career plans.

“It was hindering a lot of things. I had started college before, and actually dropped out after I got my associates, because the licenses,” said Bostic. “The state licenses that I would need in order to go on to work in the career of my choice, I wasn’t eligible to get those Because I had the felonies on my record.”

Now nearing the end of the process, she is continuing towards her goal of becoming a licensed clinical psychologist. Bostic is encouraging other community members who may be eligible to consider having their records expunged.

“If you have anything on your record, that you feel like has been a hindrance to you, or has set up a road block for you, or if it’s just something that you want to do for your self-fulfillment, please. Since this process has started for me, I am now enrolled in college again, I am pursuing my bachelors in psychology with a concentration in social psychology,” said Bostic.

Port City United is also offering transportation to its Fresh Chance Friday to those who need it. Those who need transportation can call PCU Connect at 910-798-4444.

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