A Second Chance – Tips for entering the workforce after incarceration.

In response to a well-written letter from an inmate who will soon be eligible for employment in Larimer County. Her background is as an administrative assistant, customer service and horticulture work, but she’s also interested in fast food opportunities. Her crime was possession of methamphetamines, and she says this experience has changed her life. A handful of friends and colleagues shared these suggestions about felon-friendly employers:

Robyn L. Feldberg shared a link to a list of employers: http://www.ranker.com/list/list-of-companies-that-hire-felons/business-and-company-info

Jill Kammerzell suggested Red Lobster. “When I was working in corrections they gave everyone who was in the half way house a job…and created jobs to fit their skills.”

Robin Phelps offered, “She can check out The Career Closet to find an interview outfit.”

Randy Haskett with the City of Loveland, explained: “We evaluate eligibility based on the conviction and the position. We have a detailed matrix and we apply the standards consistently. People make poor choices and we all deserve a chance to turn things around after we’ve paid the consequences.”

Jeanne Hoag recommended calling the Murphy Center at 970-658-9878 for help with housing, benefits and supplies.

Employment agency owner Keeli Marin said, “She can come to us. We place for several companies who believe in second chances:  5280 Staffing, (970) 672-8676.”

Teresia Rose Reed recommended contacting the Larimer County Workforce Center for referrals to programs and employers that are part of the Workforce Investment Act. They receive funds and tax credits for employing offenders. There is also the possibility of gaining a bond that reduces the liability a potential employer would thus making employment more appealing and in some cases possible.

And finally, career counselor Carrie Pinsky advised that the inmate write a letter of explanation. “This will be additionally therapeutic and help her convey her thoughts more clearly when speaking with potential employers. Many employers will be open to her if they see a true story of change. She will face rejection too. I would let her know that her perseverance can overcome hiring policies. Keep the faith….she can re-enter the community and the workplace…many others have and so can she.


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