06/11/2010 - Last year's federal stimulus package set aside $390 million in welfare funding for Pennsylvania. Astonishingly, at a time of high unemployment, the state Department of Public Welfare has been slow to use it, and Congress plans to end the program in September.
With a few months to go, state officials are finally beginning to work with communities across Pennsylvania to get this money to workers. They should use some of it to help Philadelphia's prisoner-reentry effort.
There are more than 50,000 people in Pennsylvania's prisons, according to the Pew Center on the States. The commonwealth spends $1.84 billion a year on corrections, and little of that is spent on prisoners' transition back into their communities.
Read the editorial Help for Released Prisoners on the Philadelphia Inquirer Web site.