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Can Felons Run for Public Office?

Can Felons Run for Public Office

With the increasing felony in the world, people often question if felons can run for public office. Every person in this world deserves a second chance. A person who has been convicted of a felony is usually mistrusted with work and responsibilities.

When it comes to serving in public offices, there is widespread panic among the co-workers regarding their safety. If a person has committed a felony then there can be certain hindrances for getting appointed in certain posts or certain public offices.

Before applying for a job in a public office, the felon needs to find out whether his felony bars him to work in that particular post. If not, then he can go ahead and apply.

The first thing that should be taken into consideration while appointing a felon is whether or not that person has been punished for his crimes by law. There are various punishments for a felony depending on the type of crime that has been committed.

If the report suggests that the felon has been punished for his felony and is regretful for his actions, then the public companies should go forward and hire that person. The company, however, should exercise certain caution while hiring a felon.

Run A Background Check

Running a proper background investigation is the first and foremost precaution that needs to be exercised before appointing a felon. Certain tests should be conducted to make sure that there is no danger or the felon does not intend any harm.

There should not be any loophole in the tests. The company should conduct certain industrial tests.

can felon run for public office

These include:

  • Intelligence test
  • Personality test
  • Trade test
  • Aptitude test
  • Dexterity test

Whether the felon fulfills the desired qualifications for the job should also be checked. After the tests are conducted, there should be a face to face interview between the felon and the employer.

The following steps are vital when hiring a felon.

1 Behavior

How the felon reacts and responds to every conversation should be evaluated by the interviewer. If the felon is found eligible after the interview, then a medical or physical examination of the candidate should be conducted to determine whether the person is physically fit for the job.

can the felon run for public office

A group discussion should be held in the public office to discuss the benefits and limitations of appointing a felon. The limitations should be worked upon to ensure the safety and security of the company and all the other employees working in it.

2 References

The company should contact at least two people who know the felon. This ensures that all the details about the felon are true. If it is found that it is worthwhile for the felon to be appointed, then the company should hire him and post him in a suitable work environment.

3 Probation

It does not end here. Even after appointing the felon, the company should keep a watch on the felon for a while. They should perform certain checks on the actions of the felon to ensure that there is no risk in the security.

4 Pardon

In many cases, the court of law pardons the felon. In such a scenario, the company should practice more caution while appointing a felon as an employee. Since the felon has not been punished and set free, there lies a considerable risk that the person might commit the felony again. To ensure that the felon does not repeat his crimes, there should be complete security in the company. This ensures that all the members of the company are safe.

5 Hiring Process

The procedures to hire a felon should be strong and secure. Mishandling of the situation may cause damage to the company. Not only the selection procedures but also the training provided to the felon should be strong.

6 Mental Evaluation

Consulting a psychologist should be an integral part of the training process. This may ensure that the felon does not repeat any of his crimes. A psychologist can understand the felon properly and bring him to the right path. No matter whether it is vestibule training or classroom training, the mental condition of the felon should be considered pivotal. This indicates the possibility to commit a new crime or repeating the same one.

Felony Restrictions

In many cases, the felon is restricted to work in a particular office or hold a particular position. This depends on the kind of felony committed. Another thing that should be taken into consideration before appointing a felon is how many felonies have been committed by the felon and what were their intensities.

If the person has committed several felonies, then the risk becomes higher. Repeat felons are punished harshly because sentencing laws take into consideration their criminal history. This however increases the threat to the safety of the public office and its members.

Although in most cases, the law states that it is neither ethical nor moral for the felon to hold an office, certain posts can be applied for by a felon.

can a felon run for public office

When appointing a felon, the company should consider the aforementioned criteria and focus on doing the right thing. There are several situations in which a felon commits a felony. Some of the reasons may be desperate. Society should give such felons a chance to rectify and correct their actions.

The felons who regret their acts should be given chances to start a new life and be on the right path. Appointing them is one of the primary ways in which they may be given a chance to live their lives in the correct way and according to the social norms.


Another important aspect that should be taken care of when appointing a felon in a public office is he should not face any discrimination from his co-workers.

Teasing or torturing a felon may reciprocate the situation and may invoke feelings such as:

  • Revenge
  • Agony
  • Anger
  • Hatred
  • Frustration
  • Vengeance

These feelings may entice the felon to do something unlawful. To prevent this, the fellow workers should also undergo a brief training.

This training should include:

1 Ways how to deal with a felon

2 Acceptable behavior pattern

3 When to report suspicious behavior

4 Who to speak with if they are not comfortable at the workplace

5 Voicing their opinions freely

This will ensure progress for the felon and other workers in the company. The workplace environment should benefit the felon and other workers and should be more considerate. This will, in turn, will benefit the company in the long run.


The motive should be to bring a felon to the right path in life. This helps them live an honorable life by performing the right deeds. If a company appoints a felon after taking care of all the probable situations and the solutions, it shouldn’t be a problem.

There should be scope for the felon to improve himself and live a rightful life in terms of ethics, moral and his deeds. This way the society and the felon will flourish. This will also bring about a decrease in human predators and make society safer to live in.

Doing the right thing is not necessarily a one-man job. It takes two to clap and this is where society should help felons. Helping them take the right steps after their release is vital in their rehabilitation.

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About Eugene Casey

Eugene works in a busy employment agency in Chicago and has nearly 20 years of experience in finding clients the perfect job. His philosophy is simple, the right match for the right position is nearly always a win-win for both the employee and the company.

When he isn't working or writing for us, he enjoys cooking and exploring the United States, one state at a time.

He lives with his wife Lisa and their two German Shepherds, Wilber and Gus.

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