Help people in need of a second chance
Let me start by saying this is my first time writing to The Reader’s Voice. This is in response to Josh Kooy’s letter in the May 10 issue titled “Past record overshadows achievements.”
I know of some people who have felonies on their records. I really did not think that it was that difficult to find a job with that kind of record (call me naive). I recently called two temp services, one in Sterling and one in Rock Falls, to ask about their policies regarding hiring people with felonies. The response was pretty much the same; they will try to work with you, but employers don’t want people with criminal records working for them unless the felony is 7 years or older.
I don’t know what the 7 years is about; these people have bills, too, that need to be paid. After several minutes on the phone with them, I decided to ask whether they discriminate; both said “no,” and I told them it certainly sounded as if they do, since they don’t hire people with felonies.
I wonder whether the people doing the hiring at all factories, restaurants, etc., know that there are tax breaks for hiring people with felonies on both the state and the federal level. Just look at Schedule 1299-D for state and forms 8850 and 5884 for federal.
It is hard enough nowadays to find a job. For employers to discriminate because of something on your record that you have already done your time for, it is almost as if you are being punished all over again for the same thing.
Give people a second chance. How can they improve themselves and be part of society if no one gives them that chance?