Three charities in Hertfordshire have joined forces to create an employment agency designed to place people from marginalised and disadvantaged groups into permanent jobs.

We’ve joined together with HACRO and CDA Herts to create Jobs Pathway, a scheme for people who are normally overlooked when it comes to job opportunities. This includes people who have been homeless, ex-offenders, people with disabilities and those who have been out of work for long periods of time. People in these groups are often stigmatised by their past and face significant barriers to their futures.

HACRO works with ex-offenders to help them turn their lives around and CDA Herts works to provide a voice for communities across Hertfordshire. The project has received funding from Office of Police and Crime Commissioner.

The team at Jobs Pathway works in partnership with employers to ensure the candidates they are putting forward are the right match for  jobs, and will continue to provide tailored management and support services throughout the critical first few months of employment.

Jobs Pathway is already in talks with businesses from across Hertfordshire about placing candidates into permanent employments.

If you are a Hertfordshire based business and would like to find out more about the Jobs Pathway scheme, or would like more information about how the scheme could support you back into employment, contact Sue Whiterod, Project Manager at Jobs Pathway on 07484 790124 or email sue.whiterod@cdaherts.org.uk

John Chesters, CEO of Emmaus Hertfordshire, says:

“Entering the recruitment process is daunting and stressful for everyone, but the fear that your past will be an automatic exclusion, or cause embarrassment at interview, is often enough to stop people applying for roles.

“Ex-offenders, formerly homeless people and those who have experienced mental health issues often receive automatic antipathy from many employers, and this lack of employment opportunities is a barrier to allowing people to get their lives back on track. This is a real shame as many of the people our organisations come across every day want to work and have all the essential skills needed to be an asset to businesses across the county.

 “We will work with employers from day one to make sure that the candidate we are placing into their business is the right person for the role, and that both parties receive all the support they need to ensure the recruitment is a complete success for everyone involved.”

Val Beale JP, Executive Chair, HACRO:

“Finding employment is a massive step in rehabilitation and a big factor in reducing crime – and it enables employers to tap into a pool of talent that is hard to reach. But it’s not easy in the current environment, so we are really glad to be partners in setting up a specialist agency to support the process for ex-offenders and others in need of extra support.”

Kate Belinis DL, CEO of CDA Herts

“We are absolutely delighted to be part of this initiative and working with Emmaus and HACRO colleagues and partners in providing a supportive route for ex-offenders to find employment, which will enable them to re-engage with the communities.

“We are grateful for the many training providers who are getting ex-offenders “work ready” and for their mentors. At CDA Herts, we feel privileged to work with people and communities to find solutions with the support of others and bring people together.  We also want to thank the Office of Police and Crime Commissioner for their grant to run this pilot programme.”