Helping Individuals with criminal records Reenter through Employment

Oklahoma

I. Oklahoma Employment Security Commission

Contact:
Oklahoma Employment Security Commission
Will Rogers Building
2401 N. Lincoln Blvd.
Oklahoma City, OK 73152
405-557-0200
Web Site: www.oesc.state.ok.us

Information about State Department of Labor resources may be of interest to:
• potential employers looking for incentives to hire individuals with criminal histories;
• service providers and individuals with criminal histories who are looking for assistance in finding employment; and
• researchers and policy makers looking at current programs to ascertain what programs are effective and serve their intended purpose.

A. Federal Bonding Program
The Federal Bonding Program provides fidelity bonding insurance coverage to individuals with criminal histories and other high-risk job applicants who are qualified, but fail to get jobs because regular commercial bonding is denied due to their backgrounds.

Contact:
Oklahoma Employment Security Commission
Will Rogers Building
2410 N. Lincoln Blvd., #454
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
405-557-7257
405-524-6081 fax

B. Tax Credits
The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) is a federal tax credit to reduce the federal tax liability of private for profit employers to be used as an incentive for employers to hire individuals from eight different targeted groups: TANF recipients, veterans, ex-felons, high risk youth, summer youth, Food Stamp recipients, SSI recipients, and vocational rehabilitation referrals.

Contact:
Oklahoma Employment Security Commission
Will Rogers Building, WOTC/W2S Unit
2401 N. Lincoln Blvd.
Oklahoma City, OK 73152
405-557-5371
405-524-6081 fax
Web Site: www.oesc.state.ok.us

C. Unemployment Insurance Office
Unemployment compensation is a social insurance program designed to provide benefits to most individuals out of work, generally through no fault of their own, for periods between jobs. In order to be eligible for benefits, jobless workers must demonstrate that they have worked, usually measured by amount of wages and/or weeks of work, and must be able and available for work.

The unemployment compensation program is based upon federal law, but administered by states under state law.

Applicants should visit the nearest Oklahoma Employment Security Commission Claims Center (locations of center are on the following web site: www.workforceok.org/locator). Applicants who live in the metropolitan calling area of Oklahoma City or Tulsa must apply by telephone between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Applicants in the Oklahoma City area must call: (405) 525-1500 and applicants in the Tulsa must call: (918)437-1855.

Contact:
Employment Security Commission
Will Rogers Building
2401 N. Lincoln Blvd.
Oklahoma City, OK 74152
405-557-0200
Web Site: www.oesc.state.ok.us

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II. Criminal Record Repository

This is the agency individuals may contact to obtain a copy of their state rap sheet. The criminal record repository can also tell the individual who else is legally entitled to have access to his or her record.

Pursuant to Oklahoma law, any person may request a copy of any criminal record for any reason. Criminal history information requests must be made on forms designated by the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation. Requests may be made in person or by mail. All requests received in the mail must include a stamped, self-addressed, return envelope. The fee for a fingerprint- based record is $19 and the fee for a name-based record check is $15. Payment must be made in the form of a certified check or money order to the “Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation.”

Contact:
Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation
Criminal History Reporting Unit
6600 N. Harvey, Building 6
Oklahoma City, OK 73116
405--848-6724
405-879-2503 fax
Web Site: www.osbi.state.ok.us

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III. State Attorney General

Employers and service providers may obtain information from the state attorney general regarding occupational bars, the licensing of individuals with criminal records in certain jobs, and whether the state has laws that limit what employers may ask job applicants or protections against employment discrimination based on a criminal record.

Contact:
Office of the Attorney General
Office of the Attorney General
2300 N. Lincoln Blvd., Suite 112
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
405-521-3921
Web Site: www.oag.state.ok.us

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IV. State Department of Corrections

New Organization Name

Oklahoma Correctional Industries employs 1250 inmates in 25 operations located at nine institutions. In addition to the public sector industries, Oklahoma Correctional Industries also manages a program which utilizes inmates who work for the private sector in two businesses that involve telemarketing and video commercial generation. Items manufactured include binders and covers, boxes, chairs, chemicals, computer services, desk pad planners, garments, janitorial supplies, lounge/dormitory furniture, mattresses, metal fabrication, modular office systems, office furniture, park furniture, printing services, record conversion, renovated furniture, school products, and signs and decals.

Contact:
Oklahoma Correctional Industries
4545 N. Lincoln Blvd., Suite 103
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
405-521-6025
405-521-6031 fax

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V. Oklahoma Department of Corrections

Division of Community Corrections/Probation and Parole

The Division of Community Corrections/Probation and Parole is responsible for operating five community corrections centers, six probation and parole districts and their sub-offices, one community corrections district and fifteen community work centers. The Division is divided into seven districts.

Contact:
Division of Community Corrections/Probation and Parole
Oklahoma Department of Corrections
1219 Classen Drive
Oklahoma City, OK 73103
405-218-4200
405-218-4215 fax
Web Site: www.doc.state.ok.us/

Contact:

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VI. Legal Assistance

Free or low-cost legal resources, both in civil and criminal law, are helpful to individuals with criminal histories in learning about relevant state laws governing the expungement or sealing of criminal histories or addressing other legal issues resulting from having a criminal history.

A. State Public Defender

Contact:
Oklahoma Indigent Defense System
1660 Cross Center Dr.
Norman, OK 73109
405-325-0802
405-325-7567 fax
Web Site: www.state.ok.us/~oids/

B. Legal Services

Contact:
Legal Aid of Western Oklahoma Inc.
2901 N. Classen Blvd., Suite 112
Oklahoma City, OK 73106
405-521-1302
405-557-0023 fax

Oklahoma Indian Legal Services is a non-profit legal aid organization providing legal services to low-income Native Americans residing in Oklahoma. It represents clients in civil proceedings that result directly from the person's Indian status and also provides community education to Native American tribes and groups.

Contact:
Oklahoma Indian Legal Services, Inc.
4200 Perimeter Center Dr., Suite 222
Oklahoma City, OK 73112
405-943-6457
405-917-7060 fax

Contact:
Legal Services of Eastern Oklahoma
Administrative Office
115 W. Third St., Suite 701
Tulsa, OK 74101
918-584-3211
918-584-1866 fax

C. State Bar Association

Contact:
Oklahoma Bar Association
1901 N. Lincoln Blvd.
Oklahoma City, OK 73152
405-416-7000
405-416-7001 fax
Web Site: www.okbar.org

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VII. Local Service Providers

Community agencies are available to assist individuals with criminal records find employment. This information will inform individuals with criminal records about government agencies and community-based organizations that assist with employment, education or vocational training. Researchers and policy makers may find this information useful in identifying agencies and service providers in order to evaluate the effectiveness of these programs.

Workforce Oklahoma

Workforce Oklahoma are the one-stop career centers in Oklahoma. Job search assistance includes labor market information, computerized job information, federal, state and local job listings, classified employment ads, individual career assessment and counseling, job referrals, employability skills workshops and resume workshops. Equipment available for use includes computers equipped with resume outlines, Microsoft Word, typing tutorials, printers, fax and copy machines, phones and internet access.

Contact:
Web Site: www.workforceok.org/locator

Community Action Project of Tulsa County

Community Action Project of Tulsa County (CAP) is designed to assist those with modest incomes to obtain basic necessities, including a home, food, quality education, childcare, school supplies, health care and economic security for the future. Currently, CAP offers programs that provide support in housing, employment, education, childcare, tax preparation assistance, social services, emergency aid, medical services, and advocacy.

Contact:
Community Action Project of Tulsa County
717 S. Houston, Suite 200
Tulsa, OK 74127
918-382-3200
918-382-3213 fax
E-Mail: webmaster@captc.org
Web Site: www.freetaxes.net

Big Five Community Services

Big Five Community Services has job training opportunities to fit the needs of most workers while providing many other services. Their workforce development programs offer on-the-job training, work experience or classroom training.  In addition, Big Five helps clients overcome other barriers to employment while they are pursuing a new job or training opportunities.

Contact:
Bryan County Big Five
1502 North 1st St.
P.O. Box 1577
Durant, OK 74702
580-924-5331
580-920-2004 fax
Web Site: www.bigfive.org

Female Offenders Committed to Ultimate Success (FOCUS)

FOCUS, Female Offenders Committed to Ultimate Success, is a pilot project of Resonance Women's Center that has been operational for one year. Participants must be convicted only of a non-violent crime and received a community sentence. During the first four weeks of the program, clients are housed at the local correctional facility, for the second four weeks, clients return home or go to transitional housing while suitable permanent housing is found. For the remaining 18 weeks clients attend daily programming including group and individual counseling, case management, substance abuse treatment, and job skills training consisting of career readiness and job development. Clients are monitored and assessed by the court, parole/probation officers and social workers.

Contact:
1608 S. Elwood Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74119
918-587-3888
918-587-3891 fax

Exodus House

Exodus House provides transitional housing for recently released individuals with criminal records as well as their children. It is administered by the United Methodist Church. Services provided include on-site substance abuse treatment, referrals for mental hygiene counseling, anger management group counseling and computer instruction. Job referrals are made, although no formal job development is available. People with a history of sexual offenses or a tendency toward violence are not accepted for residency at Exodus House. Participants are picked up from a correctional facility by facility personnel. Average length of stay is six months; rent is not charged, however after employment is obtained the utility bill becomes the responsibility of the resident.

Contact:
Exodus House
2624 E. Newton St.
Tulsa, OK 74110
918-382-0905

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