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4 Myths About Hiring Someone With a Criminal Record

PSI Team | Uncategorized

Part of doing background checks involves discovering information about a potential job candidate. The biggest red flag, it would seem, is evidence of a criminal record. Prior convictions might give a hiring professional pause. In some cases, it’s fair to consider the history of the candidate or the type of work performed as disqualifications (a teacher or healthcare worker on the sex offender registry, for example). For others, rejection seems iffy and may be illegal according to state law. Here are four myths about hiring someone with a criminal record to consider.

Myth: People With Criminal Records Will Commit Crimes Again

The truth is criminals who find regular work are less likely to commit crimes again. Recidivism is less likely when the individual is gainfully employed. Clearly, the ability to make a living, in many cases, removes the feeling that one needs to resort to crime to survive. Naturally, higher wages also help. The problem is many former felons have trouble finding jobs. When honest work isn’t available, dishonest work looks better and better.

Myth: They Are Unreliable

Stereotypes abound surrounding people with criminal records—mostly negative ones. Understandably, criminals don’t inspire feelings of trust, and many have taken advantage of others’ trust to profit. Still, hiring teams should consider candidates on a case-to-case basis. Truth be told, many people received parole because they did their time and the work necessary to regain their freedom. They are motivated to show they can be trusted again and are powered by a new faith or a strong desire to make amends.

Myth: Team Morale Will Be Affected

Understandably, some people may be intimidated by the thought of working side by side with an ex-felon. However, hiring and giving a person a chance to establish themselves after years in prison can be viewed positively by many employees. Another thing to consider is the disproportionate number of minorities who end up with convictions for lesser crimes. Hiring them shows a greater commitment to inclusivity and supporting their communities, which employees from those communities will notice. And everyone loves comeback stories!

Myth: Hiring Ex-Cons Is Bad for Business

The idea is that if you hire people with criminal records, they will frighten off customers. How exactly would that happen? Few ex-cons are immediately identifiable as such. They look like, well, people. If they perform their duties, it’s unlikely clients will figure out that they’ve done time. On the financial side, tax credits and other financial benefits and incentives are available to companies that hire individuals with convictions. Additionally, a wider variety of individuals in the workplace encourages different perspectives, new ideas, and more innovation.

Those are just four myths about hiring someone with a criminal record. If you require fair and thorough background screening services, contact us today!