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Garden Grove : Ex-Convicts’ Aid Group Is Given $50,000, Advice

A Garden Grove organization that clothes, shelters and helps ex-convicts find jobs won $50,000 in state funds Tuesday, but also was admonished by the Board of Supervisors to work more closely with county agencies.

Supervisors allocated the funds to Chicano Pintos Inc., overriding the recommendation of an advisory group that the organization not receive any more state money to help high-risk juveniles and adults.

Supervisor Harriett Wieder said the county Probation Department had “expressed certain concerns” about services given to ex-convicts sent by the department to Chicano Pintos.

She said the group “does have community support,” but she persuaded board members to require the organization to handle more ex-convicts, spend less time preparing them for jobs and concentrate on “quick job placement and emergency short-term shelter and food assistance” for people released from jail or prison.

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Baltazar Perez, executive director of Chicano Pintos, said the board’s requirements are “going to certainly put a burden on our staff to deal with the problems the ex-offender has on release.” But he said the group will “do all we can” to meet the directive.

Chicano Pintos was founded in the early 1970s and has received state funds funneled through the county for the past several years. It uses the money to find emergency shelter for ex-convicts without a home, gives them clothes if needed and provides job training and bus tickets for transportation to job interviews.

Chicano Pintos had asked for $100,000 for the fiscal year beginning in July, but the supervisors were faced with competing requests from numerous groups seeking far more money than was available.


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