How are ex-cons ever expected to succeed after prison if society won’t give them a chance?
John Oliver addressed this question on last night’s Last Week Tonight, noting the many flaws with America’s system that makes adjusting back into communities near impossible post-incarceration.
At one point, Oliver mentioned that in Pennsylvania there is a $60 fee just to enter the parole program and if you don’t have the money for the fees you can be forced to go back to jail.
As a result, some people have reported that they resort to dealing drugs in order to pay these fees. The comedian emphasized the irony of this fact, as people are engaging in criminal behavior in an attempt to stay out of jail.
“So in order to pay for the program to keep him away from dealing drugs. He has to earn money drug-dealing,” Oliver joked. “At this point the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections might as well change its slogan to ‘Y’All Come Back Now, Y’Hear?’”
The whole video is worth a watch, but you could catch this section from 11:00 to 11:55 (also look out for a cameo from PA Secretary of Corrections John Wetzel at 3:40).