Why your Small Business should hire Ex-Offenders (Part 2)
Approximately one in one hundred Americans are or have been incarcerated. You may be aware of someone in your social network, or even a close friend of yours, who has been to jail. What you should also know is that they and many more people face so several struggles after exiting prison.
One particular challenge ex-inmates face is trying to get a job. Many corporations and small business owners find themselves hesitant in hiring some who have been in bars. However, there are a lot of benefits of employing ex-convicts and helping them get back on their feet.
As a continuation of Part I, here are a few more reasons why you should consider hiring an ex-convict and the advantages you can experience.
Gain Tax Incentives for Your Business
Albeit a little more focus on the technicalities, it’s no secret that hiring an ex-offender can entail some financial aid. Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) gives a tax break to small businesses that hire applicants from target groups suffering from unemployment. This includes people who have been to jail.
File a tax credit claim of 25% of their wages during their first year if a formerly incarcerated person works a minimum of 120 hours. The more hours, the higher the percentage you can claim. This can be an attractive incentive for starting businesses.
If you’re still wary, there’s a way to put your mind at ease. The US Department of Labor has a Federal Bonding Program. This scheme provides reimbursement to small business owners who hired ex-offenders and underwent employee-related losses in the first six months.
Taking Responsibility and Reclaiming the Narrative
Americans are dependent and place a lot of importance on small businesses. That power allows owners to have a voice and platform for the community or state they are in. Consider hiring ex-offenders as a statement of being more welcoming and putting more trust in each other.
It’s telling community members that there are new beginnings for everyone. It’s telling community members that there’s a way to rehabilitate people who have had it rough and that there is no need to resort to any wrongdoings anymore. Create that narrative where it’s possible to prevent new crimes from occurring.
Being Non-Discriminatory Towards Groups
As we noted in the first part of this series, ex-offenders are often seen and judged by their history and nothing more. There are so many groups out there that face a similar type of discrimination. People in the LGBTQIA+ and racial minorities find it hard to find their place in industries they want to work in.
It’s important to end this constant pattern of discouragement. Being divided and pointing fingers won’t change things overnight. At the end of the day, we’re all people who are just striving to be better. Why should we be seen as anything else than human?
Sometimes, a second chance is all that’s needed to turn life around. Small business owners giving a job to an ex-felon can be a catalyst for both the enterprise and a person’s life. And it can be so rewarding to promote positive change that’ll help a group of people.