You know that having a criminal record can impact your ability to find employment. Many companies run background checks. Some will not hire you if you have a record, especially if it’s a felony.
While others may technically be open to hiring you, the criminal record can be used as a tie-breaker. If you and another applicant are just as well-qualified and experienced, the applicant without the record will get the job.
This happens to everyone, but the unfortunate reality is that it may impact African American workers more than white workers. With white workers, employers may be more willing to overlook it.
For proof of this in action, consider the following:
- White applicants who have a criminal record get called back at a rate of 17%.
- African American applicants who do not have a criminal record get called back at a rate of 14%.
Technically, discrimination on the basis of race is illegal in the American workforce. As this shows, though, it is still alive and well. Now just imagine how much harder it would be to get called back as a minority worker with a criminal record. And remember that this data just looks at callbacks, not the number of applicants who do end up getting a job when all is said and done.
If you are facing criminal charges, you need to think of the potential impact on your future. This goes beyond the immediate penalties that you face, such as jail time or fines. Be sure that you really look into all of the legal defense options that you have.