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About Reentry Employment Opportunities (REO) Programs

The Reentry Employment Opportunities (REO) program provides funding authorized as Research and Evaluation under Section 169, of the Workforce Opportunity Investment Act (WIOA) of 2014 for justice-involved youth, young adults, and formerly incarcerated adults. Our goal is to develop strategies and partnerships that facilitate the implementation of successful programs at the state and local levels that will improve the workforce outcomes for this population. These projects are designed to test the effectiveness of successful models and practices found in community and faith-based environments and other government systems that have not been tested for their adaptability in the public workforce system.

Core services include case management, occupational skills training leading to industry recognized credentials, employment, work experience, tutoring, mentoring, high school diploma equivalency preparation, credit retrieval, restorative justice opportunities, summer jobs linked to academic and occupational learning, leadership development, utilizing non-profit legal services providers to mitigate juvenile and criminal records, diversion from adjudication, and follow-up. Projects also promote collaboration and coordination between community-based organizations, foundations, state and local justice agencies, school districts, and the public workforce system.

REO Programs

Learn about current and recent REO grant programs.

Tools For Our Community

Federal Bonding Program

Through the Federal Bonding Program, the U.S. Department of Labor provides fidelity bonds to employers to help remove the risks of hiring individuals whose backgrounds pose significant barriers to securing or retaining employment. Fidelity bonding is insurance that indemnifies employers for loss of money or property sustained through the dishonest acts of their employees (e.g., theft, forgery, larceny, and embezzlement) with no deductible amount to become the employer's liability (100% coverage). The Federal Bonding Program has issued 54,000 bonds since its inception, providing employment for 51,000 individuals. The Federal Bonding Program has a 99% success rate, with only 1% of claims processed.

The bonds cover the first six months of employment at no cost to the job applicant or the employer. For more information, please visit www.bonds4jobs.com.

Cleanslate Clearinghouse

The Clean Slate Clearinghouse (CSC) is an online resource for people with criminal records, reentry and workforce agencies, legal service providers, and policymakers. This resource provides access to state statutory information related to criminal record clearance policies in all 50 states and U.S. territories. Criminal record clearance enables an eligible person's criminal history to be removed from easy public access, and potentially removes some of those barriers to success after involvement with the criminal justice system.

The CSC is a project developed in partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor:

  • Providing people with criminal records and reentry and workforce agencies with accurate information on record clearance andmitigation, plus contact information for legal service providers in all U.S. states and territories;
  • Supporting legal service providers currently engaged in record clearance work and giving new legal service providers the tools and resources they need to develop record clearance programs;
  • Giving policymakers the information, they need to compare their state's record clearance policies to those of other states and to learn about best practices; and
  • Providing curated news, conference announcements, and interviews, as well as training and technical assistance modules developed by a Community of Practice advisory board comprised of lawyers, advocates, academics, and others. More information at https://cleanslateclearinghouse.org.