JPMorgan Chase has announced an expansion of its efforts to help community organizations connect qualified people with criminal backgrounds to well-paying jobs.
Building on a successful pilot of its Second Chance Business Coalition in Chicago, the financial services firm will partner with community groups in Columbus, Ohio, including the Center for Employment Opportunities, Goodwill Columbus, Columbus Urban League, and the Legal Aid Society of Columbus, to provide job seekers with legal services, job search support, and mentoring. Partners in the effort will receive technical support aimed at equipping them with best-practice approaches to supporting job seekers facing barriers because of their arrest or conviction histories.
In addition, the bank will provide $12.5 million to help community organizations in Los Angeles, New York, Seattle, Chicago, Nashville, and other cities connect individuals with criminal backgrounds with in-demand jobs, entrepreneurship training, and the tools and resources they need to achieve their financial goals. The commitment includes collaborations with the Financial Health Network, Cabrini Green Legal Aid, Safer Foundation, and the Center for Employment Opportunity.
"A critical aspect of criminal justice reform is ensuring that people with past convictions have viable employment options, and pathways to economic mobility after incarceration. We are excited to join JPMorgan Chase and other partners to promote scalable inclusive hiring practices in Central Ohio," said Christopher Walter, chief external affairs officer at the Center for Employment Opportunities. "JPMorgan Chase is proving that modernizing hiring practices benefits employers by providing them with access to this highly motivated, hard-working, and loyal workforce."