Hiring Formerly Incarcerated


Why You Should Consider Them

A recent Chamber survey of 38 area businesses indicated that 34 percent of these employers were not willing to accept applications from ex-offenders. Because these individuals know their options are limited, they are typically willing to work hard to prove themselves. Many of them have even participated in training programs in prison that could give them special qualifications for a job at your company. Additionally, there are a number of reentry programs in Forsyth County that can add to their training. We encourage you to read the sections below to get a better idea of what giving someone a second chance will bring to your organization.


You Could Be Eligible For Tax Breaks

Federal Bonding Program
The Federal Bonding Program provides insurance to employers willing to hire eligible individuals with criminal convictions. The bonds protect employers against money or property loss due to employee dishonesty including theft, forgery, larceny and embezzlement. Click here for more information.

Work Opportunity Tax Credit
The Work Opportunity Tax Credit is available to private employers who employ individuals with felony convictions hired within a year or conviction or incarceration. Employers can receive up to $2400 for each eligible individual. Click here for more information.

Assessing a Criminal Record
It is impossible to produce a list of those convictions that should be taken into account, and those that should not. Assessing a conviction to make a reasoned judgement about risk is a fairly simple process. It involves checking a person’s criminal history against the following criteria:

  • How relevant is the offense(s) to the job being applied for?
  • How long ago did the offense(s) occur?
  • How many times has the person offended?
  • What is the nature and seriousness of the offense(s)?
  • What was the background context (drug dependency, homelessness, etc.) in which the offense(s) was committed? Has that context changed?
  • Was the offense(s) work related?
  • What is the person’s attitude regarding the offense(s)?