Help My Friend Oceo, A Rehabilitated Ex-Felon, Be Allowed to Work!

I met my friend Oceo Harris a year ago through AmeriCorps. From day one, I was very impressed with how he was the only one in our organization who was able to effectively work with "returning citizens" (those that are coming out of incarceration).

That year, Harris received an international citizen's award and a youth mentor award. His accomplishments were highlighted on radio and TV for his successful demonstration of personal, academic, and civic engagement within the greater community. Harris has earned a master's degree in social work and is working on his doctorate. 

Harris recently applied to 4 state agencies in Florida to receive exemptions from disqualification from work, and to be able to register as a licensed clinical social worker intern. Thorough investigations into Harris' rehabilitation led to 3 state agencies granting him permission to work. But the Department of Children & Families (DCF) has denied Harris the opportunity to pursue meaningful work in its department. 

Harris is preparing for his second appeal to overturn the decision, but we need your help! Please sign the petition to urge DCF to reverse its decision! 

Harris' last conviction was 18 years ago. Although he served prison time, he was impressively released early from probation by a federal court because he passed all drug screenings, graduated from college with a nearly perfect GPA, held 2 jobs, and maintained a stable home. 

Harris is a truly gifted counselor and mentor, and enjoys working with troubled children and adults trying to re-enter society. He was convicted partially on marijuana charges, and what's happening to Harris now is an example of how the failed War on Drugs negatively affects people's lives for years to come.

Please sign to help him achieve his dream of becoming a licensed social work counselor: tell DCF to reverse its decision!

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