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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Julie L. Jones

Florida Department of Corrections
Julie L. Jones, Secretary

Press Release
March 10, 2006
For More Information
Contact: Public Affairs Office
(850) 488-0420

Department of Corrections Announces
"Bridging the Gap" Workshop

Tallahassee - The Department of Corrections today announced a new deterrence project in South Florida. Female adult inmates serving long prison sentences will work to educate female juvenile offenders through writing workshops.

Bridging the Gap is a 12 week writing workshop during which women incarcerated at Fort Lauderdale's Broward Correctional Institution will write personal narrative essays to share with girls in the Miami-Dade Regional Juvenile Detention Center. The essays will highlight regrets and losses the women have experienced as a result of their mistakes.

The project is a collaborative effort between the Florida Departments of Corrections and Juvenile Justice, community volunteer Vicki Lopez Lukis, the Girls Advocacy Project (GAP) and ArtSpring, Inc.

"This collaboration should serve to benefit all the citizens of Florida," said Corrections Secretary James R. McDonough. "Both the juvenile and adult offenders will learn invaluable lessons through this process, which will hopefully lead them back down the path of returning to society as productive citizens."

Department of Juvenile Justice Secretary Anthony Schembri added, "The outcome of the shared experiences will help girls in juvenile detention reject unhealthy relationships, substance abuse and involvement in future criminal activity."

Bridging the Gap was developed by Ms. Lopez Lukis, an ex-offender, who serves as Vice-Chair of the Governor's Ex-Offender Task Force.

"Public safety is the chief responsibility of government," said Governor Jeb Bush. "Initiatives aimed at preventing recidivism are important tools that help ensure the security of Floridians and visitors to our state."

For further information about Bridging the Gap call Vicki Lopez Lukis at 305-216-7794, email:, or 836 Madrid Street, Coral Gables, FL 33134.

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