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201 GREAT IDEAS for Your SMALL BUSINESS, Third Edition by Jane Applegate

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GREAT 145 IDEA: Hire Ex-Cons

While serving 10 years in prison for burglary, Roy Torres had plenty of time to think about his future. “When I was doing my time, I started reading about everything going green.”

In 2009, shortly after his release, he found a flyer advertising a “green career” program sponsored by the Osborne Association in the South Bronx.

“I made the call, took the placement test, and did well,” said Torres, who worked as an electrician before he admits falling in “with the wrong crowd.”

Funded by $2 million in federal stimulus money distributed by the state of New York, the Green Career Center (www.greencareercenter.org) provides ex-convicts with two weeks of computer and career development skills, followed by four weeks of skills ...

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