Persons who spent time at Her Majesty’s Prison have a difficult time securing employment when they are released and newly crowned Calypso Monarch “Joycelyn Searles” aka “Sistah Joyce” says she is struggling with what she terms the “reject” mentality.
Her hurt at this form of discrimination shone through clearly in the Calypsonian’s song ‘Who E Hut E Hut” during the 2014 Calypso competition on 30 July. However, it was in her interview with the media, moments after her crowning, that Sistah Joyce opened up about the difficulties that she has been facing since her release from the Prison for a marijuana related offence.
The Calypsonian said that after her release she was unable to find employment and praised Dawn Flax who she said gave her a few days work: “A lot of people I went to for job, some of them basically come right out and tell me, ‘boy you get hold for weed…if it was something else’”. But people don’t know that…You don’t know how difficult it is to come out of prison because you get in a little problem and you can’t get any kind of work, but I give thanks for Miss Dawn Flax because she bypassed me going to jail for marijuana and, even though she gives me a job from Wednesday to Saturday, it’s still a job, and she helps me a lot,” she told reporters.
When asked if she would be interested in advocating for other persons who were released from prison and are trying to find employment, and turn a new leaf, Sistah Joyce said: “Is the balls of discrimination I ducking that society flinging at me. So, if they could look pass and know that I am a strong (woman); they could see I born here, I am one of them – and grasp it, I could do a lot to help.”
She was also asked if she thinks that marijuana should be legalized and she responded with a firm no.