Prisoner reform is one of the biggest topics being talked about right now by the media and congress.  Once released from prison the recidivism rate for offenders is at a staggering high of 50%.  In NYC, 89% of offenders violate their prole who are unemployed.  60% of offenders do not hold a job a year after release.  Along with that 40% of offenders do not have a GED or high school diploma.  So how do we stop the cycle of recidivism?  It seems like common sense but people with jobs do far less crime then people with jobs.  If we want to reduce recidivism offenders need to be able to find and hold a job.  A lot of offenders though find it hard to find and hold jobs after being released from prison because of discrimination or not having the right education.  The system we have right now sets up offenders to fail.


How does this apply to Privacy, Security, and Freedom of Speech though?  If we were to fix these problems and offenders found it easier to get jobs that means we will have more offenders in the work place.  This could make a lot of people nervous and some people might not feel safe.  Employers are hesitant to hire people with criminal records because they are worried about the safety of their workers and how good of a worker they are.  One of the harder barriers that offenders have to overcome is filling out a job application.  In almost all job application their is a section where you have too fill out if you have been convicted of a felony.  Most jobs will throw your application in the garbage if you fill out yes you have and wont even consider you for the position.  On top of all of this there is a lot of jobs that have restrictions on hiring people with criminal records.  For a small amount of jobs this is not a bad thing but for majority of jobs a reformed offender is just like any person.  This creates a question of how much privacy should offenders get regarding to their criminal record.


1: Would you feel safe if you worked with someone who was once in prison?

2. Do you think that it should be legal to ask people if they have committed a felony on applications for jobs?

3. Should we bar people from certain jobs with criminal records no matter what their crime is?

4. Should the government help offenders find jobs after release?



Gideon, L., & Sung, H. (2011) Rethinking Corrections: Rehabilitation, reentry, and reintegration, Sage Publication, Inc.