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Provide incentives for businesses to hire ex-convicts – human rights group

Published:Tuesday | October 25, 2016 | 10:13 AM

The Government is being urged to provide incentives to businesses to employ ex-convicts.

Executive Director of human rights group Stand Up For Jamaica, Carla Maria Gullotta, says inmates face an uphill task to become employed when they are released from prison.

The head of the group, which carries out rehabilitation work with inmates in the island’s correctional facilities, says the chance of being employed is obliterated after incarceration.

Gullotta says this is because of the stigma and discrimination attached to imprisonment.

She argues that the Government could provide an incentive, either through a tax credit or tax deduction to employers so they would be encouraged to employ ex-convicts.

She reasons that if inmates take the initiative to turn their lives around, the least the society can do is to accommodate their reintegration through gainful employment.

More than 30 per cent of the prison population are re-offenders.