The Georgia Public Defense Foundation (GPDF) has partnered with the Fulton County Office of the Solicitor-General (FCSG) to reduce recidivism in Fulton County through the LADDERS education and training program.
LADDERS is a pilot leadership development initiative of GPDF that provides transformational education and resources for individuals exiting the criminal justice system. This program uniquely combines case management and soft skills training with a vocational certification through a partnership with Atlanta Technical College (ATC).
“We believe that everyone deserves a second chance” said Omotayo Alli, Executive Director of the Georgia Public Defender Council. “Each participant will be empowered to transcend their present circumstances so that they may be restored to their communities and lead self-sufficient and productive lives.”
The partnership between GPDF and FCSG will steer eligible participants toward obtaining an educational certification rather than a mark on their record. Participants from FCSG who complete the LADDERS program will receive a record restriction of their current charges when applicable, allowing them to move forward with a clean slate.
Last year, GPDF formed a partnership with ATC to serve as an educational partner for the LADDERS program. Through this collaboration, program participants are eligible to obtain a GED and vocational certification, vastly increasing their job prospects and reducing their chances of recidivating through the system.
“Atlanta Technical College is excited to serve as the training partner for the LADDERS program,” said Dr. Victoria Seals, President of Atlanta Technical College. “As the GPDC works to provide second chances, we know that economic mobility is a critical component to ensuring success. Our intentional engagement will allow participants to thrive in their new opportunities.”
This partnership will serve as a model for uplifting indigent individuals involved with the criminal justice system throughout Georgia.
The MOU signing was covered by Fulton County Government Television. Click here to view the FGTV story.
The Georgia Public Defender Council & Georgia Public Defense Foundation
The Georgia Public Defender Council (GPDC) is an independent state agency within the Executive Branch of the State of Georgia responsible for representing approximately 85 percent of all criminally accused persons. GPDC public defenders work tirelessly to provide zealous, effective, and timely legal counsel to all in the care of GPDC.
The Georgia Public Defense Foundation is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit that supports the efforts of Public Defenders across the state. It provides comprehensive social services and development programs to assist defendants exiting the justice system.
Fulton County Office of the Solicitor-General
The goal of the Office of the Solicitor General, under the direction of Keith E. Gammage, is to achieve smart, just, and restorative justice by pursuing a comprehensive, forward-thinking approach to the criminal justice system that prioritizes community education, public safety, criminal justice reform, and the just, speedy adjudication of traffic and misdemeanor criminal matters. The Office of the Solicitor General of the State Court of Fulton County’s responsibilities includes investigating, charging, and prosecuting misdemeanor breaches of Georgia law and local regulations that take place there.
Atlanta Technical College
Atlanta Technical College is a vibrant part of the Technical College System of Georgia and was named its College of the Year in 2012. Prior to that, the college was selected as America’s Best Community College by Washington Monthly magazine. Most recently, Atlanta Technical College has been ranked one of the best in the nation for online courses and programs. In 2022, Atlanta Technical College celebrated 55 years of serving the City of Atlanta along with Fulton and Clayton Counties. For more information on Atlanta Technical College, its $201M economic impact, and its 200-plus award-winning programs, visit www.atlantatech.edu.