Community Action Partnership recently received funding of up to $89,422 from the California Emergency Management Agency to support the purchase of a new laser machine for the Liberty Tattoo Removal program.
The Liberty Tattoo Removal Program, under the auspices of the Economic Opportunity Commission of San Luis Obispo County (EOC), offers free removal of unwanted, antisocial and/or gang related tattoos that inhibit employment or otherwise interfere with life. Participants are required to perform 16 hours of community service in exchange for their hours of treatment. Community physicians Charles Fishman, MD and Frederick Novy, MD donate their time each month to the program.
Sierra Vista houses the Liberty Tattoo Removal Clinic and in addition to a generous annual monetary donation, provides medical supplies and clinic space free of charge to the program.
“People with tattoos often find themselves being stereotyped, making it difficult to find employment or to be promoted,” said Janet Allenspach, program coordinator. “The removal of tattoos for our program’s participants helps to decrease recidivism, removes anti-social and/or negative behaviors and prejudices and increases opportunities for employment, education and quality of life.”
In 2008, Liberty Tattoo provided 221 tattoo removal treatments to 73 individuals, resulting in 3,456 community service volunteer hours. Since 2000, 2,180 treatments have been performed. This grant money will ensure that even more people will be able to take advantage of the program in the future.