“Orange Is The New Black” Author Talks Employment Barriers For Former Prisoners

When former convicts are released from prison, one of the biggest barriers they face is securing employment. A job is so important for re-entry into mainstream society, but most employers refuse to hire someone with a felony on their record, despite the fact that they’re known to make loyal employees. Piper Kerman, author of the book of the same name that inspired “Orange Is The New Black,” was lucky to have a network of friends to help her find a job, unlike most newly released prisoners. She discussed the issue at the Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit on Tuesday, and mused to Fortune that one of the most remarkable aspects of her experience with prison was “the incredible ability of women to step up for each other, and to be resilient and to share their resiliency with other people.” Here’s hoping more major companies will change their policies regarding felony convictions. [Fortune]