Program to provide business training, loans to ex-prisoners

DETROIT (AP) - A program providing entrepreneurship training and microloans to former prisoners will be rolled out in Detroit and three other cities.

The $2.1 million Aspire Entrepreneurship Initiative was announced Monday by the U.S. Small Business Administration, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and micro-lender Justine PETERSEN.

The initiative also is planned for Chicago, St. Louis, and Louisville, Kentucky. The W.K. Kellogg Foundation will fund the pilot.

Its specific focus will be on the formerly incarcerated who also are raising children, and expands on a Small Business Administration microloan program for small business owners currently on probation or parole.

Small Business Administration Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet says "entrepreneurship and small business ownership are proven paths toward wealth creation and financial independence especially for people who might otherwise feel trapped by their circumstances."

Published: Wed, Aug 24, 2016