There are many companies and industries that offer a second chance to ex-offenders, helping them get their life back on track.
Individuals who have been incarcerated can find employment in various second chance trucking companies, which offer steady work, competitive compensation, and a chance to re-enter the workforce.
What Is Second Chance?
As part of the Second Chance Act of 2007, ex-offenders who have completed their conviction and served a prison term are allowed to integrate back into society and start working again.
The main goal of the Second Chance Act is to prevent recidivism, which happens when former prisoners repeat the same or similar offense and get re-convicted and re-incarcerated.
Giving an ex-offender a second chance at employment reduces the chances of recidivism.
Did you know? The U.S. has one of the highest recidivism rates, where 76.6% of ex-offenders re-offend and get arrested three to five years after being released from prison.
It’s believed that the number one reason why ex-offenders re-offend is because they aren’t welcomed back into society.
To be more precise, former offenders struggle to find work because no one wants to hire someone with a criminal past. Even though ex-felons may have the required skills and qualifications for a particular job, they can still get turned down because of their criminal record.
Not to mention how challenging it is to find work if you’re an ex-felon. The fact that 600,000 individuals are released from state and federal prisons in the U.S. every year proves how difficult it can be to find a job as an ex-offender.
This is where Second Chance comes in. It authorizes government agencies and nonprofit organizations to provide support to those who have completed their sentence.
Various industries adopted the Second Chance Act, one of which is the transportation industry.
What Are Second Chance Trucking Companies?
Second chance trucking companies hire former felons, meeting them halfway and offering stable jobs that pay well. This mainly applies to large carriers who travel across different states.
Another reason why ex-convicts can find employment in the trucking industry is because there has been a shortage of truck drivers in the U.S.
However, just because second chance trucking companies hire ex-offenders, doesn’t mean that everyone gets a job.
There are still various requirements you have to meet. One of the most important is having a commercial driving license. Without one, you won’t be able to work in this industry.
Not all ex-felons will be able to obtain a commercial driving license. For instance, if the felony is related to a commercial vehicle, you won’t be able to get a commercial driving license.
There are certain felonies that automatically disqualify your chances of getting a commercial driving permit.
These include murder, assault, arson, treason, and kidnapping. Of course, vehicle-related crimes, like reckless driving and driving under the influence, can determine whether you’ll get a commercial driving license.
Did you know? Different trucking companies have different rules for hiring ex-felons.
For example, some trucking companies only hire ex-offenders who were released from prison five to ten years ago. Others are willing to hire former prisoners who have just been released from jail.
The Best Second Chance Trucking Companies
There are many trucking companies that offer a second chance to ex-offenders. Here are some of the best:
1. Western Express
Western Express is a top trucking company that offers jobs to truck drivers, trainees, and driver trainers who have been incarcerated.
The job offers many benefits, along with flexible routing and regional options, medical coverage, dental coverage, paid vacations, and a + 401(k) retirement plan.
What’s more, this company has some of the highest pay ranks in the industry, at over $130,000 a year. Western Express also offers on-the-job training for those who are in the process of getting their commercial driving license.
When it comes to application requirements for ex-felons, you must have a perfect driving record.
Keep in mind that this job is only available for ex-offenders who have been released from prison no less than five years ago.
2. Roehl Transport
Roehl Transportation is one of the best trucking companies you can work for as a former felon. This trucking company even offers paid training while you get your commercial driving license.
Once you complete the course, you have a guaranteed job waiting for you. Inexperienced drivers can earn $70,000 a year, while experienced drivers can make $82,000 a year.
As one of the leading transportation and trucking companies in the U.S., Roehl Transportation also offers extra pay opportunities for layover days, intermediate stops, and detention time.
If you want to work for Roehl Transport, you can’t have a criminal history that’s less than seven years old.
You also must be more than 21 years old, and you can’t have any transportation-related offenses or driving under the influence charges.
3. Carolina Cargo
Carolina Cargo is the ideal trucking company for new drivers, and they’re always recruiting. The company has over 200 trucks, and it has a fleet average of over 250,000 miles every year.
They also offer long hauls, and LTL shipments anywhere in the U.S. Carolina Cargo has weekly training and orientation sessions for new drivers. Benefits include health insurance, satellite communication, incentive opportunities, and professional orientation.
If you want to apply to Carolina Cargo, you can’t have more than five minor violations and no major violations over the span of five years.
Other requirements include a passed drug screening and no driving under the influence charges 30 days before your application. You also must be at least 23 years old and have a commercial driving “A” license.
4. Cardinal Logistics
Cardinal Logistics offers various jobs for former convicts. Their transportation services include dedicated fleet services, last mile and home delivery services, transportation management, warehouse and distribution services, and transportation technology. The company has more than 4,000 dedicated drivers.
You’ll be able to find lots of job openings on their website because they’re constantly recruiting new drivers. However, there are some requirements you have to meet.
For instance, you must pass a drug screening. You must also have a commercial driving license to become a truck driver for Cardinal Logistics.
5. USA Truck
USA truck has over 1,600 employees, and they’re one of the largest over-the-road truckload carriers in the U.S.
This trucking company offers flatbed trucking, intermodal trucking, LTL freight, over-dimensional freight, bulk cargo transport, and more.
At USA Truck, ex-offenders can work as regional truck drivers, dedicated truck drivers, and owner-operator truck drivers.
Each position comes with special benefits, like health insurance, paid holidays, and training programs. You can even choose to have someone there with you when you’re on the road.
To work as a truck driver for this company, you can’t have any substance-induced driving violations in the last 10 years. You also can’t have more than three moving violations and two preventable accidents in the last three years.
6. JB Hunt
JB Hunt is one of the biggest and most successful driving companies in the U.S., and their trucks drive on local and regional roads.
They even offer paid apprenticeship programs for new drivers, and when you complete the program, you’ll be able to get a full-time job as a truck driver.
There are also open positions for non-driving jobs as well. Each job comes with extensive benefit packages.
If you want to apply for the JB Hunt apprenticeship, you must be at least 21 years old and have at least three months of driving experience.
In addition, you aren’t allowed to have any alcohol and drug-related offenses in the last five years.
7. Eagle Express Lines
Eagle Express Lines offers both driving and non-driving positions for ex-offenders, including jobs in sales, operations, marketing, and IT technology.
This company works with various vehicle types, from refrigerated vans to flatbed trucks. It covers 48 states in total, and it even offers driving services to Mexico and Canada.
Some disqualifying offenses include driving under the influence charges, failed drug or alcohol tests, and vehicle accidents that led to a fatality.
You also must be at least 23 years old to work at Eagle Express Lines and have a maximum of three tickets in the last three years.
8. Navajo Express
Navajo Express is a trucking company that operates nationwide and gives ex-offenders a second chance. It’s also an excellent trucking company for female ex-felons.
Their trucks drive on regional and local roads. All their employees receive the following benefits: medical coverage, dental coverage, life insurance, a 401(k)-retirement plan, paid holidays, and onsite food and gym options.
Did you know? Navajo Express only hires former offenders who were released at least five years ago.
What’s more, you can’t have DUI and DWI charges during the last three years. You need to be 21 years old and have a commercial driving license and a good motor vehicle report. Navajo Express also offers non-driving jobs for ex-offenders.
A Second Opportunity for Employment
When offenders get released from prison, they find it difficult to find a job. If you have a driving license, there are various second chance trucking companies that take on ex-offenders that have a clean record of five, seven, and ten years.
Once you find a stable job in the trucking industry, you’ll slowly be able to get your life back to normal.