The United States has one of the highest incarceration numbers in the developed world; numbers vary, but studies estimate around 1 in 38 people in the U.S. are under some type of correctional supervision. The numbers extend well into the millions for current prison populations. With so many people incarcerated, there are thousands joining society each week looking for a fresh start. But how easy is it to get started?
Finding a job post-incarceration can be incredibly challenging; search online, and you’ll find sites dedicated to helping connect former inmates with jobs. This is important for two reasons; first, to foster independence in someone newly joining society, and second, to prevent recidivism. Current studies track that within three years of release, about two-thirds of offenders are rearrested.
So what does any of this have to do with pallets?
U.S. Companies have the opportunity to solve this national problem and tackle a much larger cultural issue simply by checking their own biases and following unprejudiced hiring practices. A study by The Manhattan Institute showed that the sooner ex-offenders are employed, the less likely they will commit future crimes- as much as a 20% reduction rate. Another study on Criminal Background and Job Performance shows that employees with criminal records have longer tenure, more company loyalty and are less likely to leave a position as compared to those employees without criminal records.
Millwood believes in second chances. We have many ex-offenders in the Millwood family and are proud of the contributions they offer and the growth they have shown. Stereotypes and preconceived notions only limit us as a company, when instead we could be welcoming talented individuals. One such team member, Brian Mulrooney, agreed to share his story to serve as an example for other companies that may be considering reevaluating their hiring process.
Check out the video below to learn how an opportunity to build pallets changed one man’s life: