Organized by: Ashley Jacobs
Ashley Jacobs via Crowdrise
August 27, 2014
My name is Ashley Jacobs, and I am a single mother of four boys. I am currently seeking employment, but doors keep getting slammed in my face because of a mistake that I made 7 years ago.
In 2005, I was living in New Orleans when Hurricane Katrina hit. I evacuated with my husband and children, and moved to Georgia, where I had some extended family. I took on two jobs, working 60 hours a week while my husband stayed home with our boys, but my income wasn't enough to pay our bills and buy food for my family. It was heartbreaking watching my sons have to share a package of Ramen noodles because we couldn't afford more. Out of desperation, I did some false returns at my job.
Shortly after, I got caught and sentenced to state prison for stealing around $1000 via false returns. I was 6 months pregnant when I was sentenced, and I had to give birth to my third son while I was incarcerated. The guards took me to the hospital to induce me long before I was in labor, and I was forced to have an unwanted and medically unnecessary C-section while shackled to the operating table. My story was featured in the Voice of Witness book Inside this Place, Not Of It.
I have paid my debt to society and am a new person. I am trying to raise my four boys the best way I know how and keep a roof over their heads. I am a Certified Medical Assistant and have gotten amazing jobs in the medical field, but once they administer a background check and discover my past conviction, I lose my job. Recently, I was hired as a medical clerk at a military base here in Tampa, but I was denied clearance to get onto the base due to my record. I chose this amount because this would pay my rent for two months to give me enough time to find employment and for my kids and I to not be on the street.
Thank you so much for considering donating and/or referring me to any potential job openings in the Tampa area. I appreciate it so much!