One of the worst things about life after imprisonment is finding a suitable job. Its a difficult time when employers are reluctant to hire you and when you have to face questions every time you fill in the job application form. And to add to the misery, more than 80% of employers today do some form of background checks, limiting job options available to convicted felons.
To help you filter your job options and start over a new life, here are some jobs that may be the perfect fit for you.
1) Join the Army
Yes, you are allowed to join the army or other branches in the military, depending on the conviction you hold. The military invites individuals under the age of 42 and will overlook some types of convictions. Before trying to apply, check the Army policy in your country to see if you qualify.
A position in the army should be a satisfying one especially if you are looking to correct your past mistakes.
2) Online Freelance Work
Online freelancing is the best option for any underprivileged person, more so in the case of a felon. It requires no drug test, no background checks, no certifications, no psychological tests or any other tests you can think of. You will be hired only based on your skills and nothing else.
There are several online jobs that allow you to work at your own pace and in your own home. You can work as much as you want and you will be your own boss.
However, you must make sure that you are taking up a legitimate job and not fall a prey to fake jobs. A job scam is the last thing you want after all the time spent in prison.
3) Starting you own business
Again, like freelance jobs, starting your own business requires no background checks and you do not have to worry about being fired. You can try to do something at home and with your computer. Remember, the best businesses are often low-cost startups. Try doing a business or service in which people have to pay you to come to them. This way, you can avoid renting office space or store front.
For example, if you are into windshield repairing, your customers pay you to go to their houses to repair their windshield.
4) Temp Agency
This is one of the best options if you are looking for a job immediately after you are released. You might have to explain the details of your conviction to convince the hirer. Make him believe that your past will not affect your job. After your service with a temp agency, many companies will be happy to hire you even without making a background check. These companies may not have hired you otherwise, if you had applied right after your conviction.
5) Construction Sector
The construction sector offers lots of opportunities to convicted felons. Some ex-felons are reluctant to join the construction industry as they think it offers limited pay. But this is not true. Construction business offers a decent income and you always have an opportunity to grow if you are willing to work hard.
If you have limited formal education you might have to start from the bottom and gradually make it to the top. After working for some time, you may show your credentials and apply to grants for felons. This will help you complete your education.
6) A Position at an NGO
You may find some NGOs showing hesitancy but there are many who would offer a job and also help you to make a living of your own. But remember, your salary at an NGO could be limited. It would be better for you to choose the right kind of job and get experienced before you look for a job shift.
7) Offshore Drilling
This is yet another industry that is most likely to offer jobs for ex-felons. Workers in this industry, especially the oil drillers, make a decent income. However, you might have to work two to three weeks at a time on the rig and that of course will be followed by a 2-week break. This job is most suitable for men and you are most likely to find positions in places like Gulf of Mexico and Alaska.
8) Delivery driver / Truck driver
Lots of companies dont mind hiring ex-felons as their delivery people. But you must have a clean driving record. There is an exception here. Larger trucks need special licensing. Individuals on a parole might have limitations as they may have to travel out of state. For others, this could be a suitable position.
If you already have a truck driving license, its an advantage.
9) Medical Testing Volunteer
The job may sound scary but there are many medical testing processes in most developed countries. If you volunteer yourself, the job pays you well. You may not be asked too many questions about your past records but hirers may want you to be in good health.
There are many types of medical testing jobs for volunteers. When a company introduces a new product for healing of scars, they might want to test it on people with scars. Volunteers who are willing to try the companys products, photograph the results and let them be published are paid well.
Another example is a company offering tattoo removing solutions. Like the previous example, these companies also hire volunteers to test their products. You may be paid few hundred dollars for an outpatient-type job. In other cases, you may have to stay in the hospital and be monitored for few days. The payment is usually good in such cases.
10) Telephone Operator
Many companies outsource telemarketing and customer service to smaller organizations. There are many telemarketing jobs available in different sections. While some companies do a background check, others simply hire you based on your skill sets. If communication is your key skill along with a little voice modulation ability, and if you like to engage with people, your job is secured in the telemarketing industry.
As long as employers are happy to hire you, ex-felons can work in many fields. In fact, many non-profit organizations will help you turn a fresh page. But do not be picky about your job at this point; the most important thing is to get a job and get your life back on track.
Image Credit: Article image, Army, Freelance Online Work, Start your own business, Temp agency, Construction worker, NGO, Offshore Drilling, Truck Driving, Medical Testing Volunteer, Telephone Operator.