Fair Chance to Succeed

Fair Chance to Succeed

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Jerilyn Brown
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6 days ago

Tell Me About Yourself

One of the questions I asked as a hiring manager was " Tell me about yourself". This was particularly difficult for candidates with a criminal background. Some would begin answering by telling me they had a record. Oregon is a "Ban The Box" state so I'm not expecting to hear about a criminal history at this stage of the interview.

Telling a hiring manager about yourself doesn't mean reciting your life story. We want to hear about your QUALITIES as a prospective employee. Here's a terrific example I will share from one of my top team members who applied for a front desk position.

" Well, I'm a people person! I enjoy interacting with others & I have excellent communication skills. I appreciate the differences in others and what their experience brings to the team. I am a bit competitive and that drives me to take on new challenges and strive to do the best job I can. I take pride in my performance and I set goals for myself to consistently improve. I'm good at taking feedback and applying what I'm told to enhance my performance and correct mistakes I make. I am human after all. I like to learn new things and will take on new responsibilities because I want to be that "go to" employee. I want my performance to be a positive contribution to the team and the company I represent. I enjoy customer service and I love making people smile and feel like they're important".

When employers ask you about yourself they are actually asking you what value hiring you will bring to the business and how adding you to the team will benefit them. Whether it's a positive can do attitude, organizational skills or focus, you need to highlight the qualities you possess that will apply to the job role you're applying for.

Think about what qualities and skills you have that will benefit your prospective employer. Write them down in a paragraph form like the one above & practice saying it aloud so you feel confident in telling employers how great you are going to be for their business 😁

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Jerilyn Brown
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4 days ago

SNAP & TANF: Crucial Benefits Play A Part In Recidivism

A Jobcase member brought up the subject of how sad it is that felons can't get food benefits. That's partially true, unless you live in South Carolina. There, felons are still banned from benefits & that is a factor in the state's high recidivism rate. Food & basic living needs are so often difficult for re-entry felons that many do return to criminal activity just so they can survive. Many states have recognized the need for these folks to be eligible for benefits so instead of committing new crimes their basic needs are met & they have a better chance at completing court & parole requirements. Some states require eligibility & the receipt of benefits be directly dependent on post release requirements. This is a lengthy article but it touches on important factors about the ban & the consequences as well as providing information by state on SNAP & TANF bans.

What state do you live in & have you had issues getting benefits? Has receiving benefits made a real difference in your re-entry success? Share your insights with us

Check out your state law on benefits here

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Abner Williams
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25 days ago

Sometimes you have a little anxiety, and a bit fearful when being released from prison, and really prefer to stay away from engaging with to many people at one time. You want a job, but prefer to work from home. Here's a video of companies that will hire you as a felon to work from home. https://youtu.be/I6oc-xxZaJM

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Gabriel Albala
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6 days ago

I can only assume that most viewers/participants in this forum have done prison time (either Federal or State), or have a loved one currently doing time. As for me, from Day One I promised myself and loved ones that I would do my best to return as soon as possible and I would do things to improve my chances of success upon my release. I didn't want to have to stay 1 second more than I had to. This included not getting into trouble and losing Good Time Credits.

I couldn't be tempted by shenanigans and would have to swallow my pride sometimes to avoid confrontations and a possible fight. I signed up for as many classes as I could. I immediately sought employment with Unicor or for the institution such as in the library or groundskeeping. I was fortunate enough to enroll in and complete an outside Paralegal Course.

But one of the biggest challenges was getting a Character Reference letter from a C/O. I always worked hard in the kitchen or at Unicor, and C/O's notice that. I never disrespected an officer and never gave them attitude. About 3 months prior to my release, I approached several C/Os and respectfully asked if they were willing to write a Character Reference Letter for me. Of the 4 C/Os I asked, only 1 actually wrote it. And it took several gentle reminders of my upcoming release to "encourage" her to write it. And it was a great, well written letter. I made several copies and provided one for my attorney and P/O. My attorney even commented that it's challenging to get a C/O to write a letter, and the fact I had one would reflect favorably to the Court.

After my release, I mentioned having it during interviews along with my references. I also mentioned having it while filing a motion to amend my Condition of Supervised Release, so that my Judge was aware I had it also.

The main reason I'm writing this, is to help those who are coping with a loved one being incarcerated. Maybe you can mention this to them during a phone call. It helps keep your and their minds busy and proactive.

Never give up!

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Jerilyn Brown
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7 days ago

Free Phones For Your Job Search

Yes, you read that right. Free phones is a thing. There are programs available that will help you get a free or nearly free smartphone to help you make calls about job information, answer calls for interview appointments and not miss opportunities because you can't be reached. Cell phones are important tools to navigate life these days. Unfortunately most people in re-entry aren't given anything substantial to get them started but a few bucks. helpforfelons.org has provided the link below. Find out how to get a phone with up to 500 mins talk time & unlimited texting.

SEE IF YOU QUALIFY LOOK HERE

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Jerilyn Brown
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6 days ago

Simple Interview Breakdown

Here's a simple, straightforward breakdown of the interview process. This process applies whether your applying for an entry level restaurant job or a position in retail or a supervisory role. Good point here: body language & eye contact are important from the moment you walk in the door.

Check it out

Watch this short video Be confident, present your best self and go ace that interview!

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Scott Silvers
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26 days ago

I see so much good advice, suggestions and ideas as I scroll through this group, but I don't see many responses from those who post in this group. That does puzzle me. I understand what someone goes through when he or she is released back into the free-world and are unemployed. So if I may, I would like to provide a piece of my own advice. I am one who has also stood at the corner of frustration, disgust, self-pity, loneliness, worthless, incapable, and hopeless. It doesn't matter your crime in finding "a" job. It may not be your dream job, but as more time goes by of you doing the next right thing, the more opportunities will open up to you. But there's only one place all this can begin, and that is with you. It is a must to stop the "I cant's" because that means nothing more than "I won't," it is a thinking error. It is also a must to stop using the "Always" and "Never" excuses - those are absolutes. There is nothing a person cannot do if they just do it. There are no such things as absolutes; nothing is always or never. If one is serious about getting a job, income, responsibility, then be proactive and at least take the time to think about what folks that care on here write to you. Take the time to complete your profile so potential employers can notice you and your need to survive. Take the time for yourself... You will not regret it. Reach out if you need help. Someone will be there... #wordsofadvice #jobsearch #motivation #success #proactive #money #responsibility #jobcase

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Gabriel Albala
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7 days ago

I can only speak for myself, but I know that my relatively short time of incarceration (25.5 months) really had an impact on my current views and attitude. It changed how I view things and put things into a different perspective for me. When in prison, I minded my own business and kept to myself. I made some friends/acquaintances who I would socialize with, but I usually walked with blinders on, while at the same time being aware of everything around me. I would see things that "I didn't see." When in prison, you definitely don't talk even slightly negative about another inmate because you know it's going to haunt you and get you in trouble. Now let me tie this in with my current situation.

I work with 4 other people in my work-area. We may work different shifts, but we always overlap at least a couple of hours. There is one guy who seems to be disliked by most of the other employees I work with. When I started, I was told "Oh be careful with 'Joe' ... he's weird or an acquired taste." I wouldn't comment and would just go to work to get my job done as best I could. If I heard people talking about 'Joe', I just kept it moving and not even look in their direction. Even when dealing with customers who I feel complain about the most trivial thing, I say to myself "you have no idea what a serious problem is, or the serious scenarios I have faced."

The general public just would never truly understand what it's like being arrested and imprisoned, unless they themselves have experienced it. And the experience is not universally the same - every inmate has different experiences. But there is no way for someone to truly understand the challenges and hardships and struggles felons face daily, and maybe even for the rest of our lives...

Oh, and by the way, Joe really is kinda weird! LOL... Anyone else care to share on this topic? Hope to get some responses!

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Scott Silvers
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7 days ago

Fair Chance Hiring Ex-Felons in Demand in Tight Labor Market Due to to the shortage of workers more doors are opening for convicted felons. They are being given A Fair Chance for Employment. These stigmatized people are proving to be worth it... Click on the link below to watch the video and leave a comment with your take on the subject.

https://youtu.be/FQGnh6ek5QY

#felon #hiring #fair chance #worthy #success #human beings

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Janice Reed
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Community Specialist
3 months ago
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