8th February 2024
Irish Penal Reform Trust (IPRT) launched a new scoping study exploring the attitudes of employers in Ireland to hiring people with criminal convictions on Thursday 8 February 2024. "The Secondary Punishment": A Scoping Study on Employer Attitudes to Hiring People with Criminal Convictions was supported by the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) and the Open Doors Initiative.
The report presents the findings of interviews with employers and people with convictions, survey data, and a participatory symposium. The report makes recommendations for actions that would support employers in hiring and remove barriers for people with convictions searching for work. The need to create a positive climate for the recruitment of people with convictions, encouraging and supporting employers to hire people with convictions, and supporting people with convictions with access to meaningful employment were captured as part of the 10 recommendations arising from the report.
The report further makes clear that the Government should progress legislative reform that promotes inclusivity and anti-discrimination for people with convictions, and that Budget 2025 should provide ring-fenced funding for the establishment of a dedicated support service relating to the recruitment of people with convictions that is accessible to employers and people with convictions alike.
Initial actions that have a key role in reducing the barriers to employment for people with convictions are outlined in 10 recommendations made in the study.
This research was made possible thanks to the support of IHREC’s Human Rights and Equality Grant Scheme 2022-23 and the generosity of the Open Doors Initiative.