Reply To: The insidious policy of blanket exclusions for registered sex offenders

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Bill Hall

@Linda. I have been able to find work and housing, thought it was not easy. And I am at the “lowest” level, meaning I am not even on the registry site for Arizona. But, as part of conditions of parole, I have had to disclose that I am a “sex offender” to any potential employer and/or landlord. As you can imagine, that doesn’t go over real well in either situation, and I have a hard time with that being an actual condition of parole. Anyway, I almost had a good job, interviewed well, and let them know about my incarceration; and they were ready to hire me. Once they talked to my PO, though, and he found out I had not disclosed the sex offense, he told me that not only was I not getting hired, but that he could have arrested me for that. Thank God he didn’t, but talk about ridiculous!
Fast forward a few months, and I finally found a company that would hire me. I have been there over a year now, and though it’s not what I want to be doing, I am actively seeking work in the field that I want to be in. As for the housing, I disclosed to a potential landlord, and after having given them a $500 deposit because I thought that was the only place I would find, I found another place, but that guy kept my deposit. When I texted and called and tried to get my money back, he left a threatening voicemail on my phone. I went to the police a few days later and played it for an officer, but he said that he understood that “my feelings were hurt”, but that it wasn’t harassment, and I couldn’t file a complaint. Pretty much what I expected, which is why I didn’t go to them right away.
I eventually did find housing, but it’s in a bad part of town, and pretty crappy, but it’s a place to live.