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SHRM CEO Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., Champions Second-Chance Hiring at White House Event

Organizations representing more than half of the U.S. workforce have joined SHRM's pledge on hiring workers with criminal histories

​WASHINGTON, June 13, 2019 — SHRM — the Society for Human Resource Management — issued this statement from President and Chief Executive Officer Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., after he and other business leaders spoke today at the White House about the importance of second-chance hiring:

The promise of the First Step Act will never be fulfilled if people coming out of prison remain locked out of the workforce. We need to focus on hiring the most qualified candidates — even if they have made mistakes.

I am proud to see HR, the business community and government making a strong commitment to this issue because it’s good for individuals and families, it’s good for employers, and it’s good for society.

What’s holding back employers is uncertainty about how to safely and effectively hire people coming out of prison. This is why SHRM has taken the lead in launching the Getting Talent Back to Work pledge, calling on businesses and their leaders to consider those with criminal backgrounds for jobs.

The response has been inspiring. The pledge has been signed by a diversity of organizations and business leaders who represent more than 50 percent of the American workforce. Through the pledge, SHRM is providing employers with a step-by-step toolkit offering effective practices for screening and evaluating these job candidates in the context of their background and skills.


For additional information, visit

In two research surveys, SHRM explored hiring people with criminal backgrounds: Workers with Criminal Records: Consumer and Employee Perspectives and Hiring Workers with Criminal Records

Media: To schedule an interview, contact Kate Kennedy of SHRM Media Relations at 703-535-6260 and or Vanessa Hill at 703-535-6072 and

About the Society for Human Resource Management

SHRM, the Society for Human Resource Management, creates better workplaces where employers and employees thrive together. As the voice of all things work, workers and the workplace, SHRM is the foremost expert, convener and thought leader on issues impacting today’s evolving workplaces. With 300,000+ HR and business executive members in 165 countries, SHRM impacts the lives of more than 115 million workers and families globally. Learn more at and on Twitter @SHRM.


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