Employment Opportunities For Convicted Felons


Finding employment as a convicted felon can indeed be a daunting task, but with the right strategy and knowledge of less conventional opportunities, it becomes more achievable.

Here, we’ll explore 10 unique employment opportunities that felons can pursue, identify seven lesser-known companies that are known for hiring felons, and discuss their average salaries.

Employment Opportunities for Convicted Felons

1. Freelance Work

Freelancing can include writing, graphic design, web development, and more. Platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer allow felons to showcase their skills without the need for a background check.

Average Salary: $20,000 – $60,000 per year, depending on the field and client base.

2. Artisan and Craftwork

Creating handmade goods such as jewelry, furniture, or artwork can be a fulfilling career. Selling these products online through platforms like Etsy or at local craft fairs provides flexibility and creativity.

Average Salary: $15,000 – $50,000 per year, based on sales and market demand.

3. Tattoo Artist

Description: Many felons find success as tattoo artists. This profession values skill over background, and many tattoo parlors are willing to train promising artists.
Average Salary: $25,000 – $50,000 per year, depending on skill level and clientele.

Dog Trainer

Working with animals can be a therapeutic and rewarding career. Dog trainers can work independently, join training facilities, or partner with pet stores.

Average Salary: $25,000 – $45,000 per year.

Urban Farming

Urban farming involves growing produce in city environments. This can include rooftop gardens, community gardens, or indoor hydroponics. Selling the produce at farmers’ markets or to local restaurants can be profitable.

Average Salary: $20,000 – $40,000 per year.

Personal Trainer or Fitness Coach

If you’re passionate about fitness, becoming a personal trainer or fitness coach can be a great career. Certification programs are available, and many gyms are open to hiring felons.

Average Salary: $30,000 – $70,000 per year.

Mobile Car Wash and Detailing

Starting a mobile car wash and detailing service requires minimal startup costs and offers flexibility. Building a client base through excellent service can lead to a steady income.
Average Salary: $25,000 – $50,000 per year.

Recycling and Scrap Metal Collection

Collecting and selling scrap metal or recycling materials can be a profitable venture. This job involves gathering recyclable materials and selling them to recycling centers.
Average Salary: $20,000 – $40,000 per year.

Virtual Assistant

Working as a virtual assistant involves administrative tasks such as scheduling, email management, and customer support. This remote job can be done from home, making it accessible for felons.

Average Salary: $25,000 – $45,000 per year.

Restoration Services

Jobs in restoration services, such as restoring old furniture, homes, or cars, are hands-on and creative. These roles can be both satisfying and lucrative for individuals with a knack for fixing and restoring.

Average Salary: $30,000 – $50,000 per year.

Lesser-Known Companies Hiring Felons

Here are a few companies that you may not have hear of that have a reputation of offering work to felons.

Of course it never hurts to apply to big and well known employers such as Amazon, Home Depot and Walmart.

Greyston Bakery

Greyston Bakery, known for its open hiring policy, provides jobs without background checks. They make brownies for Ben & Jerry’s and other products.

Average Salary: $25,000 – $35,000 per year.

Dave’s Killer Bread

This company has a strong commitment to hiring felons. They produce organic bread and offer positions in their bakeries.

Average Salary: $30,000 – $40,000 per year.

MOD Pizza

MOD Pizza actively hires felons and focuses on providing a supportive and inclusive workplace. They offer roles from entry-level to management positions.

Average Salary: $20,000 – $35,000 per year.

Felony Franks

A Chicago-based hot dog restaurant, Felony Franks specifically hires ex-offenders, offering them a second chance in the food service industry.

Average Salary: $20,000 – $30,000 per year.

Description: Cintas provides uniforms and other business services and is known for hiring felons in various roles, including production and sales.

Average Salary: $30,000 – $50,000 per year.

Western Express

This trucking company offers opportunities for felons to become drivers, providing training and support to help them get their commercial driver’s license (CDL).

Average Salary: $40,000 – $60,000 per year.

Check out other truck driving job opportunities.


Televerde provides marketing and sales services and hires felons for positions such as sales representatives and customer service agents.

Average Salary: $30,000 – $50,000 per year.

Tips for Felons Seeking Employment

Leverage Skills and Interests: Focus on jobs that align with your skills and interests. Passion and expertise in a particular field can lead to better job satisfaction and success.

Pursue Certifications: Obtaining certifications in fields like fitness training, culinary arts, or automotive repair can make you more attractive to potential employers.

Build a Portfolio: For freelance work or artisan crafts, having a portfolio of your work can demonstrate your skills to potential clients or employers.

Networking: Connect with others who can provide job leads, references, or advice. Join support groups, attend job fairs, and utilize social media platforms like LinkedIn.

Consider Entrepreneurship: Starting your own business, whether it’s a mobile car wash or a landscaping service, can be a great way to create your own opportunities.

Seek Out Felon-Friendly Employers: Research companies known for hiring felons and apply directly to them. Many companies appreciate the loyalty and hard work of employees who are given a second chance.

Stay Positive and Persistent: The job search may take time, but maintaining a positive attitude and being persistent will eventually lead to success.

In conclusion, while the road to employment for felons can be challenging, it is far from impossible.

By exploring less conventional job opportunities, seeking out felon-friendly companies, and leveraging personal skills and interests, you can find meaningful and rewarding employment.

With persistence, honesty, and the right resources, a stable and fulfilling career is within reach.

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