Michigan inmates to be trained in first-ever tree-trimming program

DTE, Michigan Dept. of Corrections partner up
Posted at 10:57 AM, Jul 09, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-10 06:36:39-04

(WXYZ) — The Michigan Department of Corrections (MDOC) and DTE Energy have partnered to create a tree-trimming program for inmates.

According to DTE, the companies it uses to trim trees around energy infrastructure have been unable to find trained people fill open, in-demand positions. DTE and MDOC say they created this program to help give employment opportunities to returning citizens and combat the labor shortage.

Returning citizens often struggle to find meaningful full-time careers due to their criminal record and/or lack of job experience and skills. Keeping a full-time job is a crucial factor among the 71% who do not reoffend.

How the program will work

Once released on parole, the prisoners who have completed the program will be eligible to join the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 17 Union and fill an open role with a local tree trim supplier.