By Emma Castleberry
When Amanda Lankford was released from a North Carolina prison facility in July, getting a job in the midst of a pandemic was one of her first priorities. So she immediately applied for a position at a convenience store.
“They wouldn’t use my prison ID as a form of identification,” she said. “So I made an appointment to get an ID made, and the appointments were so far out, it was going to be the beginning of September.”
Waiting two months for acceptable identification wasn’t an option, so she started contacting North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offices that were outside of town. Getting an ID at one of those locations would require her to find transportation, given that she didn’t have a driver’s license.
But even outside of town, many DMV offices were closed. The ones that weren’t had significant delays.
The challenges of reentry after prison are not new. But the pandemic has made life far more difficult for formerly incarcerated people who were already struggling.
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