Date of Conferral





Criminal Justice


Kimberlee Blackmon


Discrimination, racism, and class bias affects the accessibility of resources available to African American males who are exoffenders. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore the lived experiences of African American, male exoffenders' ability to access resources postincarceration. Guided by Bell and Freeman's critical race theory, a purposeful sample of 6 African American, male exoffenders were recruited from 2 reentry programs in the Northeast United States. A semistructured interview approach was employed to examine the life history, details of experience, and reflection on the meaning of the lived experience from the participants. The modified Stevick, Colaizzi, and Keen method of analysis was used to analyze the interview data. Seven themes emerged that included the stigma of a criminal record, lack of resources, good family support, the importance of employment, accountability, responsibility, lack of education, and the environment that can impact the success or failure of an exoffender's reentry. Policymakers in the criminal justice system can change the current policy that underestimates the extent to which the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 has affected the resources that African American, male exoffenders need to reintegrate into society. The positive social change implication is that service providers can use the results of this study to better serve the needs of African American, male exoffenders as they transition from prison into society.