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Friday, August 19, 2016

Felon Wants to Become a Barber

 Felon Wants to Become a Barber,

My name is Gracie and my boyfriend is currently incarcerated and was sentenced 3-10 year sentence for battery with a deadly weapon, conspiracy robbery and attempt robbery and is hoping to only do 3 with parole. He's working on getting his GED now and wants to get into barber school when he gets out but while he's doing that, what kind of job do you think he will be able to get here in a gold mining town? Or any other place?

Felon Wants to Become a Barber

Hi Gracie,

Felon Wants to Become a BarberIf he wants to be a barber that is great.  I know of many ex-offenders and felons who have chosen to be barbers and hairstylists.  Every community welcomes good barbers.  I have been to many prisons and found that barber/cosmetology instruction is offered as vocational training within the prisons themselves.  If that is
the case where your boyfriend is, he will be ahead of the game.  What you may want to do first is contact the cosmetology board in your state to see if his convictions make him ineligible to be certified or licensed.  If not, he could still turn it into a profitable "hobby."  He could make house calls and cut hair.

Always a strong suggestion I make to all felons looking for jobs is to make a trip to the local One-stop Career Center.  Once know as the "employment office," the local one-stop offers many services like resume preparation, interviewing skills and other resources to help citizens get jobs.  There are also computers available for job search use.  Every center has lists of available jobs in the immediate area.  He will also find counselors that offer personal assistance to those looking for jobs.  If barber training is not offered at your boyfriend's facility, there may be funding available for training at a barber school.  The counselor will be able to tell you if funding is available.  The counselors also may know employers that have hired ex-offenders or felons in the past.

You can find the local One-stop Career Center here:

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Thursday, August 18, 2016

Should a felon lie on applications to get jobs?

 Should a felon lie on applications to get jobs?

I have a friend who tells me all I have to do to get a job even with a record is lie. He said That an employer has to get written permission to legally run a background check on anyone. So according to him, if they don't ask for permission, just lie about my record. I want to do things the right way. What do you think?



 Should a felon lie on applications to get jobs

Hello Ricky

Should a felon lie on applications to get jobs
A lot of employment applications have a Certification/Release Statement that the applicant must sign before the application is considered. This statement may also be called an Authorization. The employer is asking you to certify with your signature that all of the information you have given is correct. Part of this certification is a release that gives the employer access to information provided by past employers, law enforcement agencies, educational institutions and other organizations that may have information about you. This is usually in fine print at the very end of the application.

Some believe by being honest on applications they don’t have a chance at getting a job. The fact is an employer cannot legally refuse to hire you because you have a criminal record unless the conviction is directly related to the job for which you are applying. I have spoken with former inmates who have lied on applications and gotten jobs, only to lose them later when background checks were done. Some have been encouraged to use the response “Will discuss at interview.” In my opinion, these are not good practices. The best advice I can give is BE HONEST! Employers have a responsibility to know as much as possible about prospective employees. There have been employers who have been found guilty of negligent hiring when employees who have criminal pasts committed acts that resulted in harm to others. Those situations could have been avoided by careful screening through background checks. Employers will ask directly on applications about criminal convictions as a means to protect himself, his business, and others.

Should a felon lie on applications to get jobs
Most employers are concerned with convictions. Pay careful attention to the wording of this question. It may vary from application to application. Typically the question will ask about convictions of crimes and/or felonies and not so much misdemeanors.

There is one exception to this. Before you answer the question "Have you ever been convicted of a crime?" look for the certification/release statement. If there is none, I would leave the space blank. It is often overlooked by being left blank and you won’t have to address the question at all. If it is noticed, and you are questioned, always answer truthfully.

Larger companies will almost always have a release to sign. Ex-offenders and felons stand a better chance of being hired by small companies rather than larger ones. Smaller companies usually won't spend money on expensive background checks. Also the owners or managers of smaller companies usually make the hiring decisions. Jobs for felons and ex-offenders will depend on being honest on employment applications.

I hope this helps.

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Should a felon lie on applications to get jobs

  Should a felon lie on applications to get jobs

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Monday, August 15, 2016

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felons

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felons
Many companies hire ex-offenders and felons
Finding jobs for  ex-offenders and felons is a very difficult task. I know, I have been helping ex-offenders and felons get jobs for many years. I wish there was one thing I can tell them that would make this job easier, but the fact is, it will take a plan and a lot of hard work. Unfortunately, too many felons consider themselves victims of society that are constantly discriminated against for things they have done in the past. When a felon is released, the sooner he or she finds gainful employment the lower the risk of re-offending.

As I tell my students, don't expect anyone to feel sorry for you. Don't look for any sort of favors. There are few to be found. There are ex-offenders and felons hired everyday. You have the right skills and attitude you could be a big asset to the right company. Jobs are not going to come to you. You will have to get out and compete for them. Anytime someone else wants the same thing you want, you have to compete for it. Unfortunately, the playing field is not level. You have a criminal record which will put you at a disadvantage when it comes to competing for jobs. This does not make things impossible, just a little more difficult. The only way to overcome this disadvantage is to work harder and smarter. My question is, do you have what it takes to get a job? Filling out a few applications a week and spending the rest of your time hanging out or playing video games won't get you a job. You must plan to put in 40 hours per week, finding job openings, writing letters, making phone calls, filling out applications and working on your interviewing skills. There are ex-offenders and felons hired everyday. If you have the right skills and attitude you could be a big asset to the right company. Let's look at some things you will need to increase you chances of getting a job.

A Resume

Everyone looking for a job should have a resume. A resume is an individual summary of your background, experience, training and skills that helps you to present your best qualities to an employer. If you have a resume, have a professional person look at it to judge it's quality. If you do not have a well written resume, I suggest you get some help putting one together.

Proper Interview Clothing

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felons
Do you have appropriate interview clothing? A well fitting suit with a nice shirt and tie would be Ideal. That may not be possible for someone just getting back into society but I suggest that men at least have dress slacks, a light colored shirt and a coordinated tie. You should also have a pair of shoes that you can shine. No boots, no sneakers…shoes! Many of my students buy their interview clothing at thrift stores. They find quality clothes at very low prices, clean and press them and they are ready to interview. No matter how you get them, the right clothes makes all the difference. You should also have a neat haircut be clean shaven. If you wear a beard, it should be neat and trimmed. How do you look? Do you look like an ex-offender or a businessman? Do you look like you are going to a business meeting? You should - an interview is a business meeting. You should always look like a professional who is there to conduct business! Always dress like you have an interview even to fill out applications. You also want to leave the employer with the impression that you have class. You will never get a second chance to make a first impression.

Interviewing Skills

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felonsWhile your resume may get you an interview, it’s your performance on the interview that will get you the job. Remember you are going to a business meeting so be personable and friendly but keep it businesslike. Do not reveal too much information. give full responses to the interviewer's questions but never volunteer information that is not asked for. If the question of your record comes up, briefly acknowledge it but do not spend too much time talking about it. Focus on what has happened since your conviction and what you have done to make yourself a better person. Develop a friendly smile and a good handshake. You have to make the interviewer forget that you are an ex-offender. Get a friend or family member to help you by playing the part of the interviewer. Practice will pay off.

Finding Job Leads

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felonsThe most effective method of finding job leads is by networking. Networking is simply talking to people you
already know and asking if the know of any job openings. Believe it or not, this how most people get their jobs. Employers save time and energy by hiring people that are referred to them.

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felonsAnother great source of good opportunities is to apply for temporary employment. A lot of employers need temporary help. Many temporary employees are hired permanently if they prove to be good workers.
Smaller independent agencies are a better choice than larger, nationally known ones. Independent agencies do not have the same hiring restrictions that may exclude ex-offenders are free to hire anyone they choose. They are more likely to hire a person with a criminal record. You may find some in your local telephone directory. Apply to them as you would any other employer.

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felonsI encourage everyone looking for jobs to go to their local One-stop Career Center. You will find a long list of services that can help you find work. You will also find lists of available jobs in your area. There are also
counselors who can provide one-on-one assistance. Often the counselors have experience helping people with criminal records and know of employers who may hire them. The counselors can also help you find opportunities for vocational training that could lead to a new career.

You can find you nearest One-stop Career Center here:

Many companies hire ex-offenders and felonsThere are also government programs that can help ex-offenders and felons get jobs. The first is the Federal Bonding Program. Some employers are fearful of hiring ex-offenders or felons since they feel their criminal histories make them more likely to steal, commit fraud or be dishonest in other ways. A bond is an insurance policy that protects an employer against money or property loss due to employee dishonesty. Most felons cannot be bonded by private insurance companies. The Federal Bonding Program is sponsored by the government through the Department of Labor. This program was created to help high-risk, but otherwise qualified, job seekers who have offers of employment. The Federal Bonding Program offers insurance policies that protect employers against any possible losses incurred due to actions by high-risk employees. The program is designed to help ex-offenders and felons who need a second chance. These bonds are free of charge to both the applicant and the employer and can be issued for any job at any employer in any state. Any full or part-time employee paid wages (with Federal taxes automatically withheld) can be bonded, including persons hired by temporary employment agencies.

You can find out more about the Federal Bonding Program here:

Federal Bonding Program, ETA/DOL
1725 De Sales Street, NW Suite 700
Washington, DC 20036
1 (800) 233-2258

Always remind interviewers that you can be bonded. Finally, a great incentive for employers to hire ex-offenders and felons is the Work Opportunity Tax Credit or WOTC. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) is a federal income tax benefit administered by the U.S. Department of Labor for private employers who hire individuals from specified target populations. One of the target populations are ex-offenders who have completed their sentences within the past year. The WOTC reduces a business’s federal tax liability, serving as an incentive to hire otherwise difficult to employ people. Eligible employers can receive a federal tax credit up to $4,800 for each qualified employee.

You can get more information here:

There are many opportunities for ex-offenders and felons to get jobs if they are willing to put in the time and effort. Hard work, dedication and a definite plan of action will lead to jobs.

 Many companies hire ex-offenders and felons

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  Many companies hire ex-offenders and felons

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Felons Turn to the Military to Find Jobs and Careers

Felons Turn to the Military to Find Jobs and Careers


U.S. soldiers patrol central Baghdad's Fadhil neighbourhood  REUTERS/Erik de Castro
More and more Ex-offenders and felons are turning to military service as a means to a career. Getting a job with a criminal record is tough. Getting a job with a criminal record in a down economy is even tougher. The United States military is finding it tougher to find qualified recruits to fill the country's demands of its foreign policies. All branches of the military have been struggling to increase their numbers as part of a broader effort to meet the needs of world wide military operation. As a result, the number of recruits needing waivers for felony convictions has grown in recent years and subsequently, the number of waivers has also grown.

In some cases the military offers waivers to convicted felons making them eligible to serve. In fact the the number of waivers has steadily risen from 2007 to the present.

Typically the crimes that can keep you out of the army are larceny, assault, rape, drug related and murder. There is also consideration for those who have only one conviction and those crimes occurred years ago.  Generally, the Army will not grant waivers to recruits convicted of sexually violent offenses, narcotics trafficking or  sales.

For many felons, this is an opportunity to not only to put their backgrounds behind them find a job, but to learn skills, trades and start careers. The military may hold valuable jobs for felons.  If a felon is considering the military as a career option, historically, the Army has the best record of granting waivers and the Marines has the next best.  Just some information.

To get more information about waivers for ex-offenders and felons contact your local military recruiter.

 Felons Turn to the Military to Find Jobs and Careers

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 Felons Turn to the Military to Find Jobs and Careers

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