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The Job Hunt
Careers After Incarceration: 21 Companies That Are Ending the Stigma
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AnnaMarie Houlis
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Journalist & travel blogger
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So you're a convicted felon — this means that you committed a crime that was sufficiently serious enough to be punishable by a term in state or federal prison (as opposed to committing a misdemeanor, which is punishable by country of local jail confinement and/or a fine).

You're probably wondering if you'll ever get a job again. But, fortunately for you, there are tons of companies that have hired felons before. Here are 21 companies that are willing to give you another chance with tons of jobs for felons.

1. The Military

Contrary to popular belief, you can still join the military even as a former felon. Not all felons, however, have a shot. If you were convicted of assault with a dangerous weapon (including spousal abuse), rape, statutory rape, more than one incident of driving drunk, credit card fraud, kidnapping (including parental kidnapping of a child) or breaking and entry, you will not be able to obtain a waiver, according to Felons Get Hired. If the nature of your crime wasn't quite as serious as the above, however, you may be granted a waiver — so long as you are no longer on probation or parole, in jail or facing criminal charges.

2. Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods, which is headquartered in Springdale, Arkansas, is one of the world's biggest food companies boasting big brands like Tyson®, Hillshire Farm®, Wright®, Aidells®, Jimmy Dean®, Sara Lee®, Ball Park® and State Fair®. Tyson Foods supplies retail and foodservice customers with all kinds of products like chicken, beef and pork, as well as prepared foods like lunchmeats, pizza crusts, tortillas and more. And the company, which has about 114,000 team members across its more than 400 facilities around the world, is open to hiring felons, according to Second Chance Jobs for Felons. Hiring decisions are dependent on the convictions, the number of convictions and the felon's time since release from supervision. Of course, experience and skills take precedence.

3. Ace Hardware

Ace Hardware Corporation, which is based in Oak Brook, Illinois, does over $13 billion in retail hardware sales annually, according to Jobs for Felons Hub. And the company, which was named after the ace fighter pilots of World War I, is open to hiring former felons, according to Jobs for Felons Hub.

4. Abbott Laboratories

"From removing the regular pain of fingersticks as people manage their diabetes to connecting patients to doctors with real-time information monitoring their hearts, from easing chronic pain and movement disorders to testing half the world’s blood donations to ensure a healthy supply, our purpose is to make the world a better place by bringing life-changing health technologies to the people who need them," reads Abbott Laboratories about page. "That’s our commitment to helping you live your best life." Abbott is committed to helping people live their best lives, by even offering felons a second chance at employment, according to Jobs for Felons Hub.

5. Google

Google, which has offices all across the world, is signed to the Fair Chance Pledge, which reads: "We are committed to providing individuals with criminal records, including formerly incarcerated individuals, a fair chance to participate in the American economy.” A statement on Google's official careers website also claims that Google "consider[s] qualified applicants regardless of criminal histories, consistent with legal requirements."

6. Best Western

Best Western Hotels & Resorts is headquartered in Phoenix, Arizona, but the global chain has more than 4,200 hotels in over 100 countries and territories around the world. While each hotel is different (after all, there are seven types: Best Western®, Best Western Plus®, Vīb®, Best Western Premier®, Glō® Executive Residency by Best Western® and BW Premier Collection®), the company has been known to hire former felons, according to Second Chance Jobs for Felons.

7. Walmart

Walmart is the world's biggest private employer, with some 2,200,000 employees — some of whom are former felons, according to HireFelons.org. While Walmart won't hire felons who are convicted sex offenders or who have been convicted for violent crimes or theft, they do offer some felons opportunities.

8. AT&T

According to Jobs for Felons Hub, AT&T — the American multinational conglomerate holding company that's headquartered at Whitacre Tower in Downtown Dallas, Texas — does indeed hire former felons. 

9.  Aetna

Aetna Inc. is an American-managed health care company that sells both traditional and consumer-directed health care insurance and other related services. Health insurance products include medical, pharmacy, dental, behavioral health, group life and disability plans, and other services include health care management, workers’ compensation administration and health information technology. It's been around since 1853, when it was founded in Hartfort, Connecticut. And, according to Jobs for Felons Hub, the company does hire former felons.

10. Baskin-Robbins

Baskin-Robbins is an American chain of ice cream and cake specialty shop restaurants that, according to Jobs for Felons Hub, has also hired some former felons. That said, the company reportedly told Successful Release: “Our restaurants are independently owned and operated businesses. The franchisees of our restaurants are responsible for all the hiring of restaurant employees. Any employment inquiries are best answered at the local level."

11. Starbucks

Starbucks, coffee connoisseur, has indeed considered and hired felons in the past. According to Successful Release, Starbucks has reportedly confirmed this: "We review all backgrounds for applicants on an individual basis and have considered individuals with past criminal offenses. The decisions on employment for individuals with prior Misdemeanor and Felony convictions are made by an Adjudication Committee with considerations based on the position and location. All applicants are encouraged to apply for employment and go through the background process."

12. CVS Health

CVS Health is an American healthcare company that owns retail pharmacy chain CVS Pharmacy, pharmacy benefits manager CVS Caremark, and the aforementioned insurance provider, Aetna, among other brands. It's headquartered in Woonsocket, Rhode Island, and, according to the more than 9,800 stores in 49 states throughout the U.S. boast more than 246,000 employees — some of whom are, indeed, former felons.

13. Allstate Insurance

Allstate Insurance is an American insurance company, headquartered in Northfield Township, Illinois, that, according to Jobs for Felons Hub, has hired felons before. While Jobs for Felons Hub cannot confirm that every location is open to hiring felons, research suggests the at least some have.

14. American Express

The American Express Company, which is also known as AMEX, is a multinational financial services corporation that's headquartered in New York City. According to Successful Release, the company reportedly stated that it does not immediately write off former felons: "American Express is an equal opportunity employer. Disclosure of a criminal conviction will not necessarily disqualify you for employment. Each conviction or guilty plea will be evaluated on its own merits with respect to time, circumstances and seriousness in relation to the job for which you apply."

15. Unilever

Unilever is a British-Dutch transnational consumer goods company. While it's co-headquartered in London, the United Kingdom and Rotterdam, Netherlands, its food, beverage, cleaning, beauty and personal care products are distributed worldwide. According to Jobs for Felons Near Me, Unilever does consider applicants with a felony, depending on the conviction.

16. American Greetings Corporation

American Greetings Corporation, which the world's second-largest greeting card producer just behind Hallmark Cards, is based in Westlake, Ohio. According to Jobs for Felons Hub, American Greetings Corporation generates annual revenue of approximately $2 billion. That's largely thanks to its massive, worldwide team, which does include some former felon.

17. The Gap

The Gap, Inc., which is perhaps more commonly known as Gap, is an American clothing and accessories retailer that sells products worldwide. It's been around since 1969 and, in that time, has been known to hire some former felons, depending on the conviction, according to some reviews on job forums and boards.

18. McDonald’s

McDonald's is a bigger name company known for hiring former felons. While the company reportedly told Successful Release that "the employment service center is not allowed to disclose information regarding the hiring process of new employees" and, "if [anyone is] interested in a job opportunity at McDonald’s [to] contact the restaurants near [them]," Jobs for Felons Hub suggests that the company has indeed hired felons before.

19. American National Logistics

American National Logistics touts itself as "an asset-based logistics company providing innovative solutions to your transportation needs." And, according to Second Chance Jobs for Felons, in most cases, American National Logistics will hire convicted felons.

20. American Airlines

American Airlines is one of the most popular airlines in existence. And, according to Successful Release, the company has reportedly admitted that it does, indeed, consider felons: "Discrimination and all unlawful harassment (including sexual harassment) in employment is not tolerated. We encourage success based on individual merits and abilities without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, marital status, citizenship status, military status, protected veteran status or employment status. We support and obey laws that prohibit discrimination everywhere we do business. American Airlines, Inc. fully considers all qualified applicants, including those with a criminal history."

21. Bed, Bath & Beyond

Bed, Bath & Beyond, according to Jobs for Felons Hub, has a history of hiring felons. The chain of domestic merchandise retail stores in the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada and Mexico has done it before, according to the research.

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AnnaMarie Houlis is a feminist, a freelance journalist and an adventure aficionado with an affinity for impulsive solo travel. She spends her days writing about women’s empowerment from around the world. You can follow her work on her blog, HerReport.org, and follow her journeys on Instagram @her_report, Twitter @herreportand Facebook.

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