Aims to secure jobs for those who have been traditionally excluded
LOS ANGELES—Mayor Eric Garcetti today launched a Blue Ribbon Commission on Employment Equity, an alliance of private and public sector employers committed to providing opportunities for people who have been historically excluded from upwardly-mobile jobs.
The new commission, which held its first gathering today, is comprised of government agencies, non-profit organizations and private sector companies representing a range of industries. Inaugural members include the Los Angeles/Orange Counties Building & Construction Trades Council; Morgan Stanley; Sabio; Luxe; Isidore Electronics Recycling; the Chamber of Commerce of Los Angeles County; L.A. Kitchen; and the National Association of Women Business Owners.
“Everyone deserves the opportunity to be self-sufficient, provide for their families, and pursue the American Dream — no matter who they are, or where life has taken them,” said Mayor Garcetti. “Circumstances should never define who you are. When people are denied an opportunity to make a fresh start, it drives up the personal, social, and economic costs of our criminal justice system. The members of my Blue Ribbon Commission on Employment Equity understand that, and we are committed to making opportunity real in the lives of Angelenos who want to redefine themselves through integrity and hard work.”
Members of the Mayor’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Employment Equity have agreed to voluntarily refrain from criminal record inquiries until a conditional offer of employment is extended; refrain from asking job applicants about their credit history — unless the position is at the executive level or involves public safety or financial fiduciary responsibilities; and actively work to develop recruitment and “on-boarding” policies for populations that have been historically and disproportionately unemployed and underemployed, including those with criminal records.
Mayor Garcetti and the commission are addressing an employment and social problem of enormous scale.
About one in four adults in California has an arrest or conviction record, which creates significant barriers to employment. According to a recent study, up to 80% of Los Angeles employers are unwilling to hire formerly incarcerated individuals.
It’s estimated that unwillingness to hire formerly incarcerated individuals costs the U.S. economy $57 to $65 billion in lost output every year. The state’s average recidivism rate is 65 percent, but for individuals who secure jobs shortly after release, it drops to as low as 3 percent.
The Blue Ribbon Commission’s builds on the work of the Mayor’s Office of Reentry. Mayor Garcetti established the office last year to help formerly incarcerated Angelenos find stability, resources, employment, housing and reunification with their families — with the goal of reversing the cycle of long-term unemployment, instability and displacement.
Earlier today, Mayor Garcetti also signed the Equitable Workforce and Service Restoration Executive Directive, to remove barriers to employment faced by disconnected workers in transition — including those who have been unsheltered, veterans, at-risk youth, and individuals with criminal records.
MEMBERS OF THE MAYOR’S BLUE RIBBON COMMISSION ON EMPLOYMENT EQUITY
- Chamber of Commerce of Los Angeles County
- Shamya M. Ullah, of Morgan Stanley
- National Association of Women Business Owners
- Isidore Recycling
- Coalition for Responsible Community Development Enterprises
- The Actors’ Gang
- Sherman Oaks Chamber of Commerce
- Roberts Enterprise Development Fund
- CAP Alliance
- Interior Removal Specialists Inc.
- Anti-Recidivism Coalition
- Homeboy Industries
- Northeast Worksource Center
- UCLA Labor Center
- Black Worker Center
- Friends Outside LA
- Revolve Impact
- A New Way of Life
- Los Angeles Regional Reentry Partnership
- The Reverence Project
- New Earth Life
- Roy Willis & Associates
- Inside Out Writers
- Communities in Schools
- Five Keys Charter Schools
- LA Voice
- Amity Foundation
- Lyrics From Lockdown
- Black Business Association
- UCLA African-American Studies Department
- Arts for LA
- L.A. Kitchen