Employment Is the Key to Reducing Recidivism Essay

1977 Words Nov 29th, 2012 8 Pages
Employment is the key to reducing recidivism
Derrick G. Patrick
November 09, 2012
Dr. David Willis

Employment is the Key to reducing recidivism

Individuals returning from incarceration each year live in virtually every zip code in the country. Most ex-offenders have every intention of becoming productive, tax paying citizens, and no intention of returning to the penal system. However ex-offenders are largely on their own when returning to our communities. They are often estranged from families and friends, and are increasingly faced with tremendous challenges upon their release. Most are simply unprepared for the challenges they will encounter in the attempt to restore normalcy to their lives – finding a
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To do so, ex-offenders need coaching on job search techniques specific to their needs and circumstances.” (Anderson, D. 2008) One could argue that those with a criminal history aren’t that big a deal, that they don’t make up enough of the population to matter, however, “sixty-five million Americans—or one in four adults—have a criminal record. But employers—including major companies like Bank of America, Omni Hotel, and Domino's Pizza—routinely post job ads on Craigslist that explicitly exclude such applicants, according to a new report conducted by the National Employment Law Center (NELP), a labor-affiliated advocacy group.” (Roth, 2011) So to have the opinion that these people don’t matter, is equivalent to dismissing one quarter of the population. The only alternative for them is public assistance or returning to crime, either way it puts an extra burden and added strain to everyone else.
The practice of not hiring those with criminal records has become widespread and almost the norm in today’s economic times. “Many employers use outside companies that specialize in background checks—a fast-growing industry—to help screen out applicants with criminal records. A 2009 investigation by the state of New York found that RadioShack, working with the background check firm ChoicePoint, created a system that asked applicants "Have you been convicted of a felony in the past 7 years?" and
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