Operation Exit, the City’s reentry program for people with criminal backgrounds, will be expanding by including opportunities in the technology industry through a partnership with Resilient Coders, according to a press release.
“Operation Exit is a true example of what can be achieved when people are given second chances and opportunities for a fresh start,” said Mayor Martin Walsh, according to the press release. “I am proud to see the success of this program, and am confident that its expansion will continue to further our goal of increasing public safety in Boston.”
Operation Exit was established in 2014 to provide residents with a criminal background the knowledge and skills required for entry into an apprenticeship program. The intensive training program provides peer-to-peer mentorship and hands-on learning experiences to prepare its participants for careers.
The program currently includes apprenticeship opportunities in building trades and culinary arts. So far, the Operation Exit has helped place 26 residents into careers.
Resilient Coders will teach young people from traditionally underserved communities how to use computer coding. The eight-week program launches in January 2016 and will provide opportunities for participants to design, build, and market websites.
The overall strategy is part of President Barack Obama’s national initiative, My Brother’s Keeper, which addresses persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color and seeks to actively engage communities to ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.
“Operation Exit should serve as an example of the type of smart and collaborative approaches other cities can take to improve reentry outcomes and strengthen communities,” said John King, delegated deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Education, according to the press release. “Boston and other cities that are part of My Brother’s Keeper Community Challenge are taking the important steps to invest in high-wage job training and education. I am proud to stand with Mayor Walsh to announce the expansion of Boston’s Operation Exit program and their innovative partnership with Resilient Coders.”