City of Houston

Turnaround Houston Aims To Ease Access To Workforce For Houstonians Who Face Barriers

Mayor Turner says it will target parts of town with high poverty, unemployment and crime rates, and persons who are looking for employment after being incarcerated.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner announced the launch of Turnaround Houston in a press conference held at City Hall. The main goal of the initiative is to help Houstonians who live in neighborhoods with high poverty, unemployment and crime rates, as well as those who have been incarcerated and are trying to re-enter society, access the workforce.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner (center) announced the launch of Turnaround Houston in a press conference held at City Hall. The main goal of the initiative is to help Houstonians who live in neighborhoods with high poverty, unemployment and crime rates, as well as those who have been incarcerated and are trying to re-enter society, access the workforce.

Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner announced a program aimed to help Houstonians who live in neighborhoods with high poverty, unemployment and crime rates, as well as those who have been incarcerated and are trying to re-enter society, look for employment more effectively.

The program is called Turnaround Houston.

Its main component is a series of what Turner calls resource fairs.

Resume workshops and information about how to start a business will be some of the services that will be offered.

While Houstonians who have been released from prison and are looking for jobs are an important target of the program, Turner says they are not the only ones.

“It’s been geared to people who are just having a hard time finding employment. It may, it may be geared to people who may have dropped out, don’t have the skills, just, just feel as though the doors are locked,” the mayor said in a press conference held at City Hall.

Turner was accompanied by a couple of Houstonians who have benefited from similar programs already being offered by the City.

Angel Ponce was one of them.

Ponce is a former gang member who got out thanks to an Anti-Gang Program.

A few years ago, injuries from a car accident left him in a wheelchair and he now works for the Mayor’s Office for People with Disabilities.

Ponce stressed that “success stories” like his exist and added that he thinks programs like Turnaround Houston “are gonna allow individuals such as myself to keep going, be successful and be a part of the city.”

The first resource fair will take place at the Sunnyside Multi-Service Center on March 26th.

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Alvaro ‘Al’ Ortiz

Digital News Producer

Alvaro ‘Al’ Ortiz is originally from Madrid (Spain). He worked for several years in his home country and gained experience in all platforms of journalism, from wire services to print, as well as broadcast and digital reporting. In 2001, Al came to the United States to pursue a Master’s degree...

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