Getting back into the workforce with a criminal record can be rough. Unfortunately, once you’ve obtained a criminal record the many opportunities you may have had prior to being convicted, are no more. Most employers reserve the right to not hire individuals with criminal records, and unfortunately many of them exercise that right. That leaves you picking at the bottom of the barrel to maybe earn minimum wage.
Seeing as how minimum wage in some states can be as low as $8 per hour, the chances of surviving on that kind of income are slim. Naturally, you’ll want to start bringing in more money as quickly as possible. Here are some ways to accomplish that:
- See if You’re Eligible for a Record Expungement
What if your criminal record could be destroyed? If you are a one-time offender of a non-violent crime in some states you may be able to have your records eliminated from the system. This would give you a fresh start to finding jobs, housing, and whatever else you may need without that negative blemish on your record. You’ll need to check with your state to find out what the expungement eligibility requirements are.
- Complete Odd and End Jobs
Who says you need an employer to make some money? Or that you can’t have skills because you have a criminal past? Now is the time to look for some odd and end jobs to complete for cash. Whether you help a neighbor move, mow lawns, walk dogs, or house sit during the summers, you can rake in some serious cash as you’re looking for more gainful employment.
- Start a Business
You may find that starting your own business is easier than waiting for someone else to welcome you into theirs. There are a lot of business ideas that you can start without having a penny to your name. As you develop your brand you’ll attract new business. Who knows, you may end up making more as a business owner than you ever did at any 9 to 5.
- Sell Some Unwanted Items
Clothes, shoes, jewelry, cell phones, computers, mobile devices, and even cars can all be sold for cash. Whether you look for buyers through online classifieds, go with companies who advertise “we buy old phones”, or have a yard sale, you can scrounge up a decent chunk of change to hold you over.
- Answer Surveys Online
If you spend a lot of time online why not get paid to do it? You can actually get anywhere from a few cents to several hundred dollars by answering surveys online and joining focus groups to give your opinion on some of the most popular brands out there.
When All Else Fails
Even though you’ve paid your debt to society the negative mark a criminal history can bring about is stressful. If you’re not having any luck finding employment, it may be beneficial to consider things like going back to school or taking up a certificate program in a trade. If you’re presently unemployed or underemployed, you may qualify for grants, scholarships, and programs where education is free. This will help to enhance your positive values and soften the blow of a record.
Although the road to financial success with a criminal record won’t be an easy one, it’s possible to get back on the right track. Whether your record gets expunged or not, taking the above-mentioned tips into account can help you to generate some extra income each month. With time, patience, and diligence in your job search, it won’t be long before an employer realizes the potential in you and says – you’re hired.