From convict to community leader: One man’s journey toward redemption
Hasshan Batts has given back to the community from the very day he was paroled by helping others who are also trying to reintegrate back into society
By Michael Pittaro, Faculty Member, Criminal Justice at American Military University and Hasshan Batts, director of PRSI and former inmate
I recently had the opportunity to meet a man whose journey from prison to community advocate truly inspired me. In a criminal justice system filled with more stories of failure than success, this man’s personal journey in pursuit of redemption and restoration demonstrates the importance of second chances. He is a man who persevered despite the barrage of challenges and tribulations that he faced after being released from prison.
Hasshan Batts has given back to the community from the very day he was paroled by helping others who are also trying to reintegrate back into society. The same skills that allowed an undersized youth to survive the violent streets of Brooklyn during the crack epidemic now allows him to help former inmates who are looking for ways to contribute to the community.
His story can also serve to educate those of us working in the criminal justice system about the inmate experience and the need for more programs to help them reintegrate back into society. What follows is his story, based on correspondence between the two of us and information from his website, Coach Batts. Batts has received national recognition for his contributions to the fields of peacemaking, behavioral healthcare, and social justice. His personal mission is to contribute to the betterment of society through compassion, education, and collaboration.