Kim Kardashian has made it her mission to fight for prison reform, and she’s learning all about the housing challenges former inmates face when they’re released.
When Kardashian heard Matthew Charles was denied an apartment due to his prior record, the reality TV star stepped up to pay five years worth of rent and act as his personal reference. But last week, she took to social media to report that Charles’ rental applications were still denied despite her generous offer.
Matthew Charles’s lease application was rejected again bc of his criminal record (even w me paying his rent in advance). If there are any landlords w a 2 bedroom in Nashville willing to give Mr Charles a 2nd chance, contact firstname.lastname@example.org Serious inquiries only, thank you ??
— Kim Kardashian West (@KimKardashian) March 15, 2019
Charles served 21 years in prison for drug-related charges, and in January, he was one of the first inmates released under the First Step Act. The criminal justice legislation “reformed sentencing laws that have wrongly and disproportionately harmed the African American community,” President Donald Trump said on his State of the Union address, according to The Atlantic.
“The First Step Act gives nonviolent offenders the chance to re-enter society as productive, law-abiding citizens,” Trump added. “Now states across the country are following our lead. America is a nation that believes in redemption.”
Kardashian read about Charles’ difficulties renting a home through his interview with The Tennessean, so she sprang into action. However, even her A-list Hollywood status was not enough to secure the ex-con an apartment. She hit up Twitter on Friday to make a plea to Nashville-based landlords.
“Matthew Charles’s lease application was rejected again bc of his criminal record (even w me paying his rent in advance),” Kardashian tweeted. “If there are any landlords w a 2 bedroom in Nashville willing to give Mr Charles a 2nd chance, contact email@example.com Serious inquiries only, thank you ??.”
Kardashian previously helped secure the release of Alice Marie Johnson, a great-grandmother who was serving a life sentence for a first-time non-violent drug offense. Her advocacy also helped free another convicted felon, Chris Young, in September.