The experience of prison life is probably the most painful time for every ex-felon. They want to forget that bitter part of their life. Every year the US reports crime cases of 2.12 million on average. Each of them has different reasons behind their crimes. However, life behind bars remains almost similar for everyone. It always runs systematically. And it provides every felon the chance to prepare themselves for life outside the prison cell. Today, you can find many prison programs. All of these significantly aim to make every felon ready for getting a job as a felon.
At the same time, our government has shown its constant support to remove the bias in second-chance hirings. They have already offered various skill development and training programs to them upon release. From skill development to the latest technology exposure, these programs include everything an ex-felon needs to get a job. Besides that, these programs offer them the confidence to stand in front of second-chance employers. As a result, the felony employment rate in the US has experienced steady growth over the last few years.
But this doesn’t mean a felon has not to face any employment barriers. In fact, a felon has to face more employment barriers compared to a normal applicant. Do you have any idea about these barriers? If not, don’t worry. We know how much you are curious to learn about these obstacles in getting a job as a felon.
Limited Education And Skills
From our experience, we have seen most felons have stable jobs before going into prison. But due to their past crimes, they went to prison. While in prison, they are completely away from the job roles they used to perform before imprisonment. So, it is quite common they have lost all their skills over time. At the same time, they all have no idea about the latest technological advancements in their job fields. As a result, they will become inefficient as well as unsuitable for the same job upon release.
If we consider the lawbreakers sent to prison at a young age, they have a completely different scenario. Such offenders actually miss out on the most important part of their life. The part when they need to pursue studies. Due to limited educational scopes in prison, most of them lack the education required to get a job. At the same time, they are completely away from the skills and experience they need to secure their jobs. So, they always have to face this common employment barrier. And it removes their chances of getting a job as a felon.
Limited Work Experience
This is another employment barrier faced by every felon that prevents them from getting a job as a felon. Without a doubt, most employers need relevant work experience from the applicants in the offered job role. But it is particularly difficult for felons to showcase their work experience. And the reason is very simple. They live a part of their life behind bars. In many cases, we have seen the work experience they gathered before imprisonment does not meet their current job need.
A felon may have some relevant work experience before imprisonment. But they become inactive for a long time in prison. As a result, it makes their work experience worthless. At the same time, there were lots of technological advancements that happened during the imprisonment time. But they miss all of these. And this is the reason why most employers tend to neglect an individual with a felony record.
Substance Abuse and Physical/Mental Health Problems
Upon release from prison, it is quite common that the person is having some physical or mental problems. If we look at the reasons behind it, we have to dig a little deeper. In prison, maximum felons get subjected to substance abuse. This actually puts enormous mental pressure on them. Even when they are released from prison, they are often mistreated by the people around them. So, they are always in a vulnerable position.
Sometimes, they receive this mistreatment from their own families too. And the situation will worsen if the person is unable to afford the rehabilitation process. Such problems play an important role in affecting their chances of getting a job as a felon.
Without a doubt, no company wants to hire an employee with a health or mental problem. Therefore, these health problems caused by substance abuse can work as an employment barrier for ex-felons. This will keep many ex-felons away from getting a job as a felon.
The Unwillness of Employers to Provide Jobs
Probably this is the biggest employment barrier to getting a job as a felon. From our experience, we have seen many employers tend to reject an individual with a felony record. They often provide many excuses for this. Sometimes they reject an applicant with a felony background since they believe the individual can not be trusted. Yes, there is a common belief that the person can return to his criminal life in the near future. Sometimes they feel that the individual has below moral values. And the reason is very simple. The person lives a significant part of his life behind bars.
Besides that, there is always a chance that the attitude of an employer is influenced by different factors. It may be the race, gender, or geographic location of potential job applicants. So, as an ex-felon, you should not assume they will welcome you with open arms.
At the same time, no employer wants to face the charge of negligent hiring. As per this claim, an employer is liable for this employee’s activity causing any injury or harm to a customer. This claim also raises questions about hiring that individual. In fact, the customer can charge the employer that the company did not conduct the background check properly. As an employer, no one wants to face such legal consequences. So, it is quite normal that they tend to reject a candidate getting a job as a felon.
There are hardships in getting a job as a felon. Felons have to experience humiliation. And they are often mistreated by our society once released from jail. So, the time has come that our society needs to think in a broad manner. We should help the person become morally as well as a mentally stable citizen. This is only possible if we create more second chance jobs for felons and remove the barriers.