Local company puts fmr. inmates' skills to work

Posted at 8:25 PM, Jun 02, 2016

Lazlo is a new company in Detroit selling high-quality, luxury t-shirts.

From start to finish, everything is done by hand - from cutting the fabric to sewing the shirt together. And, everything is made out of 100% organic cotton.

"It starts with the fabric; you can't have a great t-shirt, if you don't have a great fabric. This is an exploration of what does it look like to really do it all right," says Christian Birkey, founder of Lazlo. 

But, what makes this company stand out is its employees. Lazlo proudly hires former inmates and pays them $15/hour. 

"There are absolutely incredible human beings that are just looking for opportunities, so I don’t think of us as doing anything other than saying here’s a chance, you go out and seize it," says Birky. 

One of its employees, 46-year-old Aaron Branch says after spending 22 years in prison, he's glad to have a job he enjoys.

"It's a supportive environment. I like being here. I like the experience of trying something different," says Branch. 

"Our hope is to say all the business owners are missing out on a great group of people to work with," adds Birky