Employers: The type of crime matters

Employers: The type of crime matters

SINGAPORE - Employers tend to be wary of sex offenders because of the high risk they pose.

Mr Victor Sim, 53, who owns a logistics company, told The New Paper he would not consider sex offenders for any position as hiring them could potentially put his other staff at risk.

Said Mr Sim: "It'd be problematic if I hired a sex offender and something happens at work. So rather than take that risk, it'd be wiser for me not to hire them.

"I wouldn't want to be blamed for causing something undesirable just because I've hired the person."

But he said he might consider hiring those who had been involved in less serious crimes such as drink driving or being in youth gangs.

Mr David Ang, 65, the executive director of the Singapore Human Resources Institute, said employers would generally avoid hiring those who pose an enhanced risk to their companies.

He said: "Society is still unforgiving towards those who commit crimes such as rape or murder.

"It's the same logic as to how a parent would not want a teacher who has been convicted of molesting a child to be teaching their children."

However, he acknowledged that there has been much progress in the hiring of ex-offenders over the past few years, especially with the tight labour market.

Mr Ang advised ex-offenders to always be honest with their potential employer when applying for the job. He said employers should give ex-offenders a chance to understand their past and help them along the way.

The Singapore Corporation of Rehabilitative Enterprises (Score), which helps offenders and ex-offenders secure jobs, had a database of only 1,400 employers in 2004. Today, about 3,400 employers partner Score to accept ex-offenders in industries such as food and beverage, logistics, manufacturing and hospitality.

As of November this year, Score had secured jobs for 1,840 ex-offenders.

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