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Monday, May 6, 2019

Felons can Use a Certificate of Rehabilitation to get Jobs

Felons can Use a Certificate of Rehabilitation to get Jobs
Many ex-offenders and felons find it very difficult to find jobs after serving their sentences. There are some legal tools that are available that can be used that will make the difficult task of getting hired with a criminal record easier. One of these tools is the Certificate of Rehabilitation. It has also been known as Certificate of Relief from Disabilities or Restoration of Rights or Certificate of Good Conduct.

A Certificate of Rehabilitation is a court order, which declares that a person who has been
convicted of a felony is rehabilitated.  If a petition for a Certificate of Rehabilitation is granted, it
is forwarded to the Governor by the granting court and constitutes an application for a pardon.  (In
some cases the granting of a Certificate of Rehabilitation relieves some offenders from the sexual
offender registration requirement.)

If granted a certificate, one may be eligible to be certified in some fields that were previously closed because of the nature of one's conviction

Currently there are 14 states (and Washington, D.C.) in total that offer certificates of rehabilitation:


  •  Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • District of Columbia
  • Georgia
  •  Illinois
  • Nevada
  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Rhode Island
  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
Each state has it own requirements for those who wish to apply for a Certificate of Rehabilitation.  Application for a certificate is a legal process that should only be handled by a legal professional.  You must get assistance from a qualified professional.  Contact your local Legal Aid office where you may be able to get free or nearly free assistance applying for a certificate.

Legal Aid attorneys may know of employers who have hired ex-offenders and felons in your area.


Felons can Use a Certificate of Rehabilitation to get Jobs


4 Benefits of a "Certificate of Rehabilitation"






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Felons can Use a Certificate of Rehabilitation to get Jobs

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Friday, May 3, 2019

Felon with college education needs a job

Felon with college education needs a job


Felon with college education needs a job
My husband has a felony, the charge is lewd and lascivious. It was an incident that happened about 6 years ago before we met. He had a drinking problem at the time and has not drank any alcohol in the past 5 years. After serving 7 months in prison for this crime he got out and went back to school.

He started at a community college and went on to be accepted to the Kansas University school of business and graduated with a degree in accounting with distinction which is no small feat! He graduated in December of '16 and has since been unable to find a job in his field.

He has had one offer that was later taken back after seeing his charge on paper and several interviews for jobs where I know he would have got them if it weren't for this charge. We tried to get it expunged but were unsuccessful. The judge did say we should try again later as he wasn't saying no forever. My husband is becoming increasingly disappointed and losing hope. He is a great, intelligent and changed man.

What more can we do?


Felon with college education needs a job



My suggestion is to apply for jobs by letter of application. By applying for jobs this way often allows ex-offenders and felons to get around the application process and never have to mention that he has a criminal record.  Many professional job seekers never fill out applications.  They send application letters to employers.  Take a look at the sample letter below.  It will give you an idea of how to put an application letter together.






































Perhaps the best advice I can give anyone looking for a job, is to apply for all jobs you are qualified for.  Often felons will not apply for jobs because they feel that they will be rejected.  That is not a good practice.  Never eliminate yourself from jobs by not applying.  The more jobs you apply for, the better your opportunity to get interviews.

As far as applying for expungement,  this a legal process that I advise that you don't try without assistance.  I suggest contacting your local legal aid office.  you will find attorneys that can offer low cost and often even no cost assistance with getting this process done in an effective way.

I hope this helps.


Jobs for Ex-offenders and Felons: Sending resumes and Cover Letters


Jobs for Ex-offenders and Felons: Where can Ex-offenders Find Jobs

Jobs for Ex-offenders and Felons: Ten Steps to Getting a Job with a Criminal Record



Felon with college education needs a job



Felon with college education needs a job


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Thursday, April 25, 2019

Companies that Hire Ex-Offenders Can Get a Tax Credit, But Very Few Actually Claim It


Companies that Hire Ex-Offenders Can Get a Tax Credit, But Very Few Actually Claim It
By 

April has been recognized as “Second Chance Month” since 2017 as part of a bipartisan effort to push criminal justice reform. This year, President Trump has announced that he wants to cut unemployment among ex-offenders—currently around 27%, according to the Prison Policy Initiative—to single digits within five years. The most efficient way to do that is to modify the Work Opportunity Tax Credit.

A job provides needed income and adds structure to a person’s day; it’s no surprise that studies have shown employment can reduce the chance of re-offending by about 20%. Jobs for ex-offenders benefit everyone in a community.

That’s one reason ex-offenders are included in the class of applicants employers are encouraged to consider by an incentive known as Work Opportunity Tax Credits. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit is a provision of the Internal Revenue Code that authorizes a tax credit for companies that hire from certain populations, like veterans, recipients of certain entitlement programs, and people with felony records. Employers submit eligible new hires to claim a tax credit equal to a percentage of an employee’s wages.

More than job training or education, the WOTC holds promise for people leaving prison whose applications may not be as competitive as others. It also encourages higher wages since the tax credit is a proportion of what employees are paid.

In its current form, the WOTC isn’t as effective as it can be. The law applies only to those who are hired within one year of the date of their conviction or release from prison, whichever is later. In that respect, it may limit eligibility only to first-time users of the program; no job applicant can be certified twice if they need another job after that first year.

But as many as 45% of released prisoners don’t have a job in that first year of release. According to a study completed by the Brookings Institution last year, only 55% of released prisoners have any earnings at all during the first year they’re home. Very often, by the time they land a job, their eligibility for the WOTC is gone.

This might explain why the WOTC appears to suffer from underutilization. For instance, Oklahoma, the nation’s leading incarcerator, certified only 1,465 people in fiscal 2018 in the “ex-felon” category. New York, a state with approximately 47,100 inmates and 36,410 parolees, certified only 1,534 people for the WOTC. In 2014, an average of 41,866 people were on parole in California, yet only 527 eligible felons were certified to give their employers the tax credit.

The Labor Department reports that, for fiscal 2018, only 85,796 people with criminal records were certified as eligible employees—and this among a sea of an estimated 626,000 people who leave custody every year.

While it’s possible that 500,000 of those released people are ineligible because they’re beyond the one-year cutoff for the WOTC, any underutilization may stem from the inherent conflict between two policies that have same overarching goal: to help disadvantaged individuals secure employment.

Employers aren’t allowed to know of an applicant’s criminal record and eligibility under “Ban the Box” statutes—laws that remove felony conviction checkboxes from job applications.

Awareness of the WOTC benefit needs to grow and may very well do so on its own if aspiring hires can disclose their eligibility; but they won’t disclose if they’re prohibited from doing so. Ban the Box advocates have been so busy hiding people’s records to remove a disadvantage in hiring that they forego leveraging an advantage. We don’t know how many people who weren’t hired because of the eventual disclosure of their criminal record would have been offered a job if the company knew of the potential tax benefit.

There is a way to protect people’s understandable desire to both hide their record and also signal to employers that hiring them can bring a tax benefit. It involves not banning the box but revising it; a box asking of an applicant is a member of the groups covered by the WOTC would hide a criminal record while also informing businesses of the tax credit if hired.

It true that the stigma of criminal conviction prevents many people from being hired. It’s unclear whether the WOTC is enough to overcome preconceived ideas about released prisoners. The little evidence we have on this, a survey of companies in Connecticut by a small nonprofit, the Malta Justice Initiative, says employers are likely to respond to expanded tax incentives. 73% of respondents indicated a tax credit would motivate hiring managers; subsidies would entice 76% of them.

The Work Opportunity Tax Credit is authorized through the end of 2019 through the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act. Its reauthorization process will now involve criminal justice reform insider Senator Chuck Grassley who is the new Chair of the Senate Finance Committee and Vice-Chair of the Joint Committee on Taxation. Grassley’s dedication to reforming the reentry process and his new positions prime him to optimize the tax code to help meet the president’s employment goal.

Amending the WOTC to expand eligibility beyond one year would likely go a long way in helping released prisoners secure employment as well as provide a boon to businesses.

Chandra Bozelko is the Vice President of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists and writes the Webby award-winning blog Prison Diaries.


Introduction to the Work Opportunity Tax Credit




Companies that Hire Ex-Offenders Can Get a Tax Credit, But Very Few Actually Claim It

Companies Hire Felons | Companies That Hire Felons | Companies That Hire Ex-offenders | Employers That Hire Ex-offenders | Employers That Hire Felons | Jobs For Felons | Jobs For Ex-offenders | Jobs That Hire Felons | Resumes for Felons | Felon Friendly Jobs | Felon Friendly Employers | Jobs for Felons | Jobs For People That Have Felonies | Jobs For People With A Criminal Record


Companies that Hire Ex-Offenders Can Get a Tax Credit, But Very Few Actually Claim It


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Friday, April 19, 2019

Jobs for Felons: How Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs

Jobs for Felons: Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs



Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs


Getting a job is hard. Getting a job with a criminal record is definitely harder. Having a criminal record is no reason to give up hope.  There are felons being hired everyday.  Those who know what to do get hired.  Those that don't will have a tougher time.  Ex-offenders and felons looking for jobs will have greater success by developing a plan using these important steps.

Find Companies That Hire Felons


More and more employers are hiring felons.  With the unemployment rate at its lowest in a long time, employers are having a hard time finding qualified applicants to fill open positions.  Only a short time ago, ex-offenders and felons were shut out of jobs.  Now there are many companies that can say that they offer employment opportunities to people with criminal records,

Finding companies that hire felons is half of the battle.  Take a look at this long list of employers that may hire felons.  Click Here



Dress like a professional!



There is no substitute for a powerful first impression.   If ex-offenders and felons looking for jobs want to be treated like professionals, they ought to look like professionals. A fact of life is that most of us will be judged at least partially, by the way we look.  Meeting someone for the first time, you should look as professional as possible.  A nice suit, a light colored shirt, a tie and nicely shined pair of shoes wold do the trick.  At the very least, you should have a light colored shirt, dark slacks, a tie and once again shined shoes.  You may not own clothes like these, but you should do your best to get them.  You should look like someone who is serious about getting hired.  You will never get a second chance to make a first impression.



Get a personal contact card




Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs
Nothing will set you apart from the competition like having your own contact card! A professionally done contact card will leave everyone you meet with a powerful, professional, lasting impression.  Your card should include your name, address, telephone number and email address.  If you have a particular profession or skill, it should also be on the card.  Your local printer can help you put one together. You will be amazed just how affordable this powerful little tool can be.  If you have a computer. you can make your own.  You can get card paper from Staples or Office Depot and you can make your own professional looking card.



Always be honest



I encourage ex-offenders and felons to always be honest when searching for jobs especially on applications and interviews. There is often a temptation to lie about criminal pasts.  I have know many people who have not been honest on applications and gotten jobs, only to get fired later when background checks are done.  It is always better to be honest.  In this high-tech computer age, it is relatively easy to do a background check on virtually anyone, so don't count on your record not being found.

If you are asked about criminal records on interviews, you should briefly speak about it but focus on what you have learned and why having a job and working hard is important.


Use resumes and cover letters to get jobs


Ex-offenders and Felons can get JobsEx-offenders and felons will have more success getting hired if they can get their resumes into the hands of people who can hire them.  Sending a resume with a cover letter will give them a huge advantage.  A well written cover letter will introduce you and help you ask for an interview in a professional way.  Often when ex-offenders and felons inquire about jobs this way, the question of criminal records never comes up.  If you don't know much about writing a cover letter, find someone who does and get it done properly.



Build a good network

Most people get jobs through people they know. Who you know is often just as important as what you know. Finding job leads from people you know is called networking and it is without question the single most powerful way to get a job. Many jobs are never advertised because they are often filled by personal referrals. In fact, employers would rather hire somebody referred to them instead of looking through piles of resumes and applications.

Contact as many people as you can think of and ask if they know of anyone who is hiring. Ask for the person who is in charge of hiring and try to get an application or try to arrange for an interview.  The more applications you can get to people in charge, the greater your chances to get a job.



Build a list of good references



Ex-offenders and Felons can get JobsA lot of applications ask for personal or professional references. A reference is someone who would say something positive about you or your work performance. Past teachers, previous employers, ministers, and other prominent members of your community would all be great references. Please ask people if they would be a reference for you before you list them.  If they agree, get their addresses, phone numbers, email addresses or other contact information.


Always be on time!



You should always plan to arrive at least 15 minutes beforeEx-offenders and Felons can get Jobs all interviews and other appointments. Arriving early will allow you to relax and make any final preparations.  You must know exactly how long it would take to get to the interview location.  If you don't know, make a dry run to the location a day or so before to gauge your travel time.  There is absolutely no excuse for ever being late.



Practice and prepare!


Getting a job with a criminal record will depend on how well you prepare. Practice everything on your job search from filling out applications, shaking hands, body language and interviewing.

Ex-offenders and Felons can get JobsLike anything else, interviewing well will take practice. The more you practice, the better you will get.  Practice your body language in front of a mirror. Predict the interviewer’s questions and practice answering them until they sound natural. Don't memorize your answers but practice making them complete thoughts in your own words.

Get friends and family members to take turns being the interviewer.  Practice the whole interview from beginning to end. If  possible, make video recordings of your practice interviews so you can see and hear your responses to questions and your use of grammar and body language.  The more practice you get, the better you will get at everything.


Get ready to work hard!



Ex-offenders and Felons can get JobsEx-offenders and felons looking for jobs must realize that they are playing a game of numbers. More job leads mean more interviews. More interviews mean more opportunities to get hired.  It's that simple. Getting enough quality jobs leads will result in a job .

Finding a job with a criminal record will require a huge commitment in time and effort. Put your time in making phone calls, filling out applications and digging for leads. Effort in practicing, and preparation will have to go with putting the time in.  Every minute you take off leaves an opening for someone else to get a job instead of you.

There are ex-offenders and felons getting jobs everyday.  Work hard and prepare well and you could be one of them!


You can be bonded free of charge!



EX-OFFENDERS AND FELONS CAN GET JOBSThe federal government offers felons free bonding.  When you get an interview you can tell the employer that you can get bonded at no charge to you or the employer.  If the employer has concerns about you being an honest employer, you can say "I can be bonded."  A bond insures the employer from loss of money, merchandise or services due to employee dishonesty.  This may be the difference between getting a job or not getting a job.  You should speak to your state's department of labor representative at your local one stop career center.

You can find out more about the Federal Bonding Program and how it helps ex-offenders and felons get jobs here:

Federal Bonding Program






Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs

  Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs



Jobs for Ex-offenders and Felons: Ten Steps to Getting a Job with a Criminal Record




Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs


Jobs for Felons: The Facts about Companies that Hire Ex offenders and Felons (2018)


Jobs for Felons: Five Places Felons Can Find Jobs - Get a Job Quickly!



Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs


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Ex-offenders and Felons can get Jobs

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Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Trucking companies look to felons to fill thousands of driver openings

By KEVIN SMITH | kvsmith@scng.com | San Gabriel Valley Tribune


 Trucking companies look to felons to fill thousands of driver openings
John Lauria spends his working hours driving a truck loaded with cases of juice, tea and energy drinks.
It’s quite an about-face for the 49-year-old Rosemead man who spent 30 years in and out of prison for drug and burglary offenses.
Since his last release three years ago, Lauria struggled to find a solid job. But that changed in February when, seemingly against all odds, he was hired as a truck driver for Haralambos Beverage Co. in City of Industry.
“When I applied for the job I was honest with them,” Lauria said. He got the job and now earns $17 an hour.
Lauria owes his turnaround in part to a growing U.S. labor shortage. As the long-haul trucking industry scrambles to fill openings for drivers, more than 40 large operators have tapped an unlikely labor source — felons.
The American Trucking Associations says the industry needs another 51,000 drivers to keep pace with increased shipping demands from Amazon, Walmart and other mega-retailers. The demand has prompted an increasing number of trucking companies to give non-violent, ex-offenders a second look.

Steps to a new life

Making the leap from inmate to employee doesn’t happen overnight. Training, either in prison or soon after release, is a key part of the transition.
El Monte Truck Driving school in Irwindale is among those helping get felons to work. Louie Pena, who handles recruiting and placement there, said the school skips background checks as it’s well known the trucking industry is often a lifeline for people with criminal histories.
“When someone pays $4,000 to $8,000 for training … they wouldn’t put up that kind of money if they weren’t serious,” he said.  John Kearney, CEO of Advanced Training Systems, said hiring felons makes sense, as these job candidates are especially eager to find work. Kearney’s Florida-based company makes virtual simulators used to train truck drivers.
“The concern is where you draw the line in terms of their record,” he said.

Case-by-case basis

Knight Transportation, a Phoenix-based trucking company with local facilities in Fontana and Rancho Cucamonga, hires felons. But they are heavily vetted, according to Vice President T.J. Presley.
Applicants are reviewed on a case-by-case basis, he said, which includes checking their recent and past history while also looking at where they are in life now. 
“There are a lot of great people out there who just came upon bad times,” Presley said.
Knight doesn’t hire felons whose convictions were as recent as five years ago. But those who are hired make good money.
“Entry-level drivers earn somewhere in the mid-$40,000-to-$50,000 range, and seasoned drivers can earn six figures,” Presley said. “We see a lot of turnover in the trucking industry because people with good, clean driving records are in high demand.”
R&R Transportation in Greensboro, N.C., also hires felons — providing that their crimes were nonviolent.
“If someone has a criminal record because they were arrested for drugs, whether it was 25 years ago or five years ago, that doesn’t matter,” company President Karl Robinson said. “But I wouldn’t hire anyone who was convicted of murder or did sex crimes.”
Help For Felons, a website that provides support and resources for felons, lists more than 40 trucking firms that hire drivers with criminal backgrounds. They include Swift TransportationJ.B. Hunt Transport Services, Knight TransportationBarr-Nunn Transportation and Western Express, among others.
Nine of the companies hire people with convictions that are 10 years old or more while others will consider applicants whose convictions occurred as recently as five years ago. Still, others hire on a case-by-case basis.

A good time to be looking

The current climate is good for felons in search of work, according to economist Chris Thornberg, a founding partner with Beacon Economics.
“The shortage of truck drivers is just one reflection of the broader economic situation,” he said. “There are more job openings right now across the economy than there are people who want to work. So people who didn’t have that chance three, four or five years ago now have a chance.”
But they have some catching up to do. The U.S. unemployment rate dropped to 4 percent in January, its lowest level in a decade, yet the jobless rate among the formerly incarcerated stood at 27 percent.
“Right now, if you have a record no one will hire you unless the company has a policy of accepting ex-offenders,” Kearney said. “There are plenty of people out there who have made mistakes in their lives but would have a tendency to go in the right direction if they had a job.”

Employment drives recidivism rates down

Landing a job also could keep felons from a return trip to prison.
More than half a million people are released from federal and state jails and prisons in the U.S. each year and about two-thirds will be rearrested within three years, according to the U.S. Bureau of Justice.
But a study by America Works and the Manhattan Institute shows recidivism rates dropped significantly for nonviolent offenders who found work shortly after leaving prison.
In prison-to-work programs in six cities across the country, states with overall recidivism rates of about 31 percent to 70 percent saw those rates plummet to as low as 3.3 percent for felons placed in jobs shortly after their release.

Ban the Box

California is among more than 30 states that have adopted a “ban the box” law. That prohibits private businesses with five or more workers from making pre-offer inquiries regarding a job applicant’s criminal history. Inquiries are allowed only after a conditional offer of employment is made.
Despite that law and a willingness on the part of many trucking companies to hire felons, driver shortages are still common. While R&R Transportation has 14 drivers and 13 trucks, Robinson said he’s always in the hole.
“You never have enough,” he said. “Once they get two years under their belt, other companies will hire them. You’re always going to have some attrition. But if you get the right person and they meld with the culture of the business, they will stay. It takes time to get good people.”
Lauria plans to become one of those “good” people. He hopes to gain a strong foothold in the trucking industry — and stay here.
“Getting this job is the best thing I ever did” he said. “Definitely.”


  Trucking companies look to felons to fill thousands of driver openings


Trucking Jobs for Felons



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