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  #1  
Old 05-07-2016, 01:20 AM
tjsmom94 tjsmom94 is offline
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Default Conviction dates, employment and housing?

Not sure if this is the right place to ask.... my husband has 1 year left of parole. He's been out 1 year after doing 22 years. We're praying that he can transfer here to Washington where i live. Anyways, we have stuff we're trying to figure out, but one thing i don't know where to look into, is his background checks when he starts looking for jobs here. His last conviction was in 2004. How does that work with him looking for jobs?? Or places to live? I don't understand how it works?? Sorry if it's a stupid question. I just thought that he would always have his felonies follow him. I'm not really sure how to word everything correctly. Hopefully this makes sense.
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Old 05-07-2016, 03:33 AM
waitinguntil001 waitinguntil001 is offline
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Originally Posted by tjsmom94 View Post
Not sure if this is the right place to ask.... my husband has 1 year left of parole. He's been out 1 year after doing 22 years. We're praying that he can transfer here to Washington where i live. Anyways, we have stuff we're trying to figure out, but one thing i don't know where to look into, is his background checks when he starts looking for jobs here. His last conviction was in 2004. How does that work with him looking for jobs?? Or places to live? I don't understand how it works?? Sorry if it's a stupid question. I just thought that he would always have his felonies follow him. I'm not really sure how to word everything correctly. Hopefully this makes sense.
As far background checks for employment. It depends on the company that the employer uses as to how far back the check will go. I believe some states may have laws as to how far back an employer can consider a felony or any crime as to the him not being employed because of it. Your husband must provide the fact on the application if asked if he has ever been convicted of a crime. Simply putting down "no" could cost him his employment once the employer discovers he lies when the background check comes back. He should be honest with the employer about the crime. It may depend on the type of crime and what type of employment he is looking for. States vary greatly. But unfortunately many applications are done online and many ask the question on the application. So how knows if the employer will actually even look at the application once they see he does have a criminal background. That is exactly why that question is not fair to persons with criminal backgrounds. Does not even give the person a chance at a face-to-face interview for the employer to meet the person and see if he/she is right for the position. He will just have to apply for jobs and hope for the best.
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Old 05-07-2016, 06:16 AM
fbopnomore fbopnomore is online now
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It may depend on the state, and maybe even the city where he is applying. If he does move to Washington, Seattle and Spokane have implemented "Ban the Box" policies.
http://www.verifyprotect.com/ban-the-box/washington/

They are limited, but will determine the scope of allowable pre-hire background checks. You can also check the laws in the state where he is now.
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Old 05-07-2016, 08:33 AM
CenTexLyn CenTexLyn is offline
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It matters not what is on the application...does he really believe he is going to hide his parole status from the employer? After all, PO's do job site visits...

Oh, and the existence of his status as a releasee is likely going to appear on most background checks. It is CURRENT public information.
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Old 05-07-2016, 09:16 AM
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At my company, we ask applicants to explain any gaps in employment longer than 6 months.

If, for example, your man had a good work history for the past year, but before than a 22-year gap he can't explain, he probably isn't going to get hired. If he explains his prison term, he might get hired. If he makes up a job history and we catch him a few years down the road, he is fired even if he was employee of the year twice.
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Old 05-07-2016, 09:17 AM
tjsmom94 tjsmom94 is offline
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Thank you all!!!
I know he has to let po know about job. I didn't know anything about status as a releasee. I was just hoping that his conviction date being so far back would help a little in finding a job. My biggest worry is finding a place to live. I've been on lookout for houses that are not through property managers.

I'll have to go through all this year's down the road when my son comes home. By then I'll prob be an expert in all this.....
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Old 05-07-2016, 09:26 AM
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Thank you all!!!
I know he has to let po know about job. I didn't know anything about status as a releasee. I was just hoping that his conviction date being so far back would help a little in finding a job. My biggest worry is finding a place to live. I've been on lookout for houses that are not through property managers.

I'll have to go through all this year's down the road when my son comes home. By then I'll prob be an expert in all this.....
My opinion is that attempting to keep the information for a potential employer is a bad idea. Especially when his release is so recent. Many companies see trying to pull a fast one as a more serious reason to refuse the job than a conviction 22 years ago


I know the Northwest is more liberal on housing issues, but it still isn't a great idea to try to hide the fact.
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Old 05-07-2016, 09:47 AM
tjsmom94 tjsmom94 is offline
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For some reason i thought places asked if you have been convicted in the past 7 years. Or something to that effect. He is upfront about everything and does by the book. I have friends that will be able to offer employment, won't be something he likes or what he has experience in. But will be something till he hopefully can find something that he did before and during prison.
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Old 05-07-2016, 10:56 AM
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I don't know how well it works, if at all, but Ban the Box is meant to give the applicant a better chance to land the job in the first place, not to hide anything from anyone. If a "yes" on the job application means an automatic rejection, then they will never need to worry about a visit from their PO to the job they didn't get.

A thorough background check will tell the prospective employer everything about the applicant regardless of the law/policy forbidding a question about "if ever convicted of a crime". Some employers would be happier if they could ask "do you have children or other family matters that could possibly impact your job performance?" etc., the other questions an employer can not ask.
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Old 05-08-2016, 08:14 PM
GaReform GaReform is offline
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Ban the Box doesn't ban the bias. It just delays the rejection from the beginning til the end, in my son's experience. He is in Georgia & was offered 16 great jobs. All rescinded them when they learned of his conviction. Thanks to Ban the Box he was able to get to the interview & offer stage but that was really even more frustrating than be excluded at the start. Several HR people & recruiters told him that as long as the background check (of 7 years past) came back clean, that's all they cared about. He was honest & explained his situation but it made no difference to their decision. His conviction was from 2014. They told him they had a policy of no felons. This is legal discrimination.

If he has someone willing to give him a job, take it. That will show future employers that he was no risk & that means something. Some states have better help for people with felony records. Check with the state department of labor & any re-entry groups in your area. Network is key. Good luck!
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Old 05-09-2016, 09:41 AM
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Ban the Box doesn't ban the bias. It just delays the rejection from the beginning til the end, in my son's experience. He is in Georgia & was offered 16 great jobs. All rescinded them when they learned of his conviction. Thanks to Ban the Box he was able to get to the interview & offer stage but that was really even more frustrating than be excluded at the start. Several HR people & recruiters told him that as long as the background check (of 7 years past) came back clean, that's all they cared about. He was honest & explained his situation but it made no difference to their decision. His conviction was from 2014. They told him they had a policy of no felons. This is legal discrimination.

If he has someone willing to give him a job, take it. That will show future employers that he was no risk & that means something. Some states have better help for people with felony records. Check with the state department of labor & any re-entry groups in your area. Network is key. Good luck!
Georgia does not have a Ban the Box law. Individual employers may decide not to ask but to find out through a check.

FWIW, I think Ban the Box laws will do more to hurt than to help felons seeking jobs. The employer will find out before the hire is official, and if the employer does not hire felons, that is that.

It gives felons false hope. If you know going in that a company is going to ask about convictions and is going to stop the process when they find out, you won't apply. If you apply, you are just wasting your time.
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Old 05-09-2016, 01:32 PM
prisonlady prisonlady is offline
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It's not a waste of time. It may accomplish things such as finding that one employer who will make an occasional exception (it only takes one to get a job) or raising public awareness, such as by actually getting various employers to meet "felons" they like as people and workers. Depending on the circumstances, it may even be possible, on occasion, to sue the employer or get the media involved.

It is by refusing to go away that people who used to be discriminated against on various grounds have obtained more rights and acceptance. What may seem like a waste of time at the individual level could work like a "public relations" campaign of sorts for a group that is not very popular (or, more exactly, for those members of the group who do not fit the negative stereotypes, or not any more).
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Old 05-09-2016, 04:09 PM
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Georgia does not have a Ban the Box law. Individual employers may decide not to ask but to find out through a check.

FWIW, I think Ban the Box laws will do more to hurt than to help felons seeking jobs. The employer will find out before the hire is official, and if the employer does not hire felons, that is that.

It gives felons false hope. If you know going in that a company is going to ask about convictions and is going to stop the process when they find out, you won't apply. If you apply, you are just wasting your time.
I have to agree. I am a criminal justice reform & Fair Hiring advocate & have participated in 2 Fair Hiring seminars. One was in Atlanta & it was like preaching to the choir. Advocates & people that understood the problem were there but very few employers. There were few success stories & most were people that started their own businesses because they ran out of options trying to get hired by other companies. In an ideal world Ban the Box would open doors so employers could meet people face to face & get a sense of who they were. After 16 professional high tech job offers being rescinded in less than 6 months, my son has had no luck with Ban the Box. Once they know the conviction exists, you cease to.
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