Employers Wanted

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Harford County’s Second Chance Job and Resource Fair on September 26

Harford
County employers are invited to register for the 2019 Second Chance Job and
Resource Fair, which offers opportunities to citizens who have had past
criminal charges or experienced incarceration. Harford County government, the
Harford County Sheriff’s Office, the Harford County Health Department, the
Harford County Bar Foundation, Susquehanna Workforce Network, Parole and
Probation and numerous other community partners developed the fair to connect
ex-offenders with employers that want to strengthen our community by giving
individuals who have made mistakes a second chance. Participating employers may
also be eligible for tax credits. This year’s fair will be held from 9 a.m. to
2:30 p.m. on Thursday, September 26 at the EPICENTER in Edgewood.

“Last
year the Second Chance Job Fair was outstanding. We had over 35 people
interview, and found positions for more than 10.  We look forward to
meeting new clients and offering needed resources this September. Most
importantly, we are proud to be a part of the community effort to give
individuals a second chance,” Sheryl Davis Kohl, owner of Beacon Staffing,
said.

Research
on individuals re-entering the workforce affirms that ex-offenders have lower
turnover than other employees and are no more likely to be fired than
non-offenders. In addition, a citizen whose last offense was seven or more
years ago is no more likely to be arrested than a citizen without a record.

Second
Chance employers have a major impact on our communities and our economy. Nearly
one-third of working age Americans have a criminal record. Research shows that
in the first year after their release, only 55% of formerly incarcerated
individuals report any earnings. Of those with earnings, 32% made between $500
and $15,000 annually.

“According
to the Governor’s Office on Children, more than 3,000 children in Harford County
have a parent under criminal supervision. So employers who are willing to give
individuals an opportunity to rebuild their lives have a tremendous impact on
our families, schools, and communities,” said Amber Shrodes, Director of
Harford County Community Services. “And federal tax credits and reduced
employee turnover give Second Chance employers a competitive edge.”

The
Work Opportunity Tax Credit Program offers employers up to $2,400 per employee
each year. And the Federal Bonding Program provides employers 6-month insurance
policies that protect against theft or dishonesty with coverage ranging from
$5,000 to $25,000. In addition, individuals on probation have to maintain
employment as a condition of their release and most are drug tested by their probation
officer at no expense to employers.

More
information about the benefits of becoming a Second Chance employer and
registration for the Second Chance Job and Resource Fair is online at www.harfordcountymd.gov/SecondChance or by calling 410-638-4807.  Participants and vendors may also register at
this time; however, more information for participants will be released in
August.

More information about
the Federal Bonding Program is available from Susquehanna Workforce Network at www.swnetwork.org
or by contacting Sue Henry at 410-272-5400.

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