Pioneer serves people released from prison or jail in Washington State, and those in recovery from addiction, who are in need of treatment, housing and job skills training. Our mission as a social enterprise is to provide individuals with criminal histories the opportunity to lead healthy, productive lives.

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Labels Create Barriers

We believe that words are powerful and can be very stigmatizing and harmful when used to label our citizens who are or were formerly incarcerated. Let’s be clear, the individuals are first and foremost human beings!

We all need to remember that people released from prison or jail share common and descriptive names with everyone else in society to include: grandparent, parent, son and daughter, extended family member, friend, neighbor, colleague and employee. These are the only type of names that should ever be used to describe a person.

When talking about people who have been involved in the criminal justice system, here are labels to avoid and terms that are acceptable:

NEVER USE

Convict

ex-Con

Inmate

ex-Inmate

Offender

ex-Offender

Criminal

Prisoner

Felon

ex-Felon

Parolee

Watch a Video about Pioneer

NEWS

Friday, February 24, 2017

Listen to our program manager, Mary Reed, at Whatcom Community Detox discuss the opioid epidemic on KGMI radio....Read more >>

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

We started filming Erin when she arrived at our housing program in Tacoma. She was making a big change in her life and looking forward to living with her children again. Her past life of addiction was being pushed....Read more >>

Monday, February 13, 2017

Pioneer's In-Home Family Counseling changed its name to the Parental and Adolescent Counseling Services (PACS) program and offers intensive services to preserve families that are at significant risk of having....Read more >>