KQED “FORUM” – Former Prisoners Struggle to Find Jobs (Audio)

Original recording from KQED’s “FORUM”.

About 7 million Californians have a criminal record that will show up in a background check. California’s “ban the box” law prevents employers in the public sector from asking about an applicant’s criminal background in the early stages of the hiring process. But former prisoners say finding work is an uphill battle, particularly for minorities. We discuss efforts to help those with arrest records get jobs, and we talk with a business owner about the benefits of hiring people who have served time.

Host: Scott Shafer

Guests:

  • Kevin McCracken, COO and co-founder of Social Imprints, a San Francisco printing company that specifically hires and trains people with prison records
  • Michael Hannigan, owner of Give Something Back Office Supplies
  • Miya Saika Chen, staff attorney for economic justice with the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area
  • Monique Perkins, Alameda County director of the Center for Employment Opportunities