Finding employment in the current job market is a difficult task for everyone. If you have a history of substance abuse finding employment is even more difficult. Gaps in employment, possible negative references from previous employers, and criminal records all can make finding a job after addiction recovery seem a daunting task. Luckily for those struggling with employment, there are multiple federal programs and nonprofits that exist to help those without employment to get back into the job market.
Having Trouble Finding a Job? Check Out These Services.
- Department of Labor’s One-Stop Centers – The American Job Centers, run by the US Department of Labor, are designed to provide a full range of assistance for those looking to get into the job market. They have a nationwide network of career centers designed to help those down on their luck gainful employment. You can also discuss employment issues with staff at local treatment centers or recovery support groups as many work in combination with the Department of Labor to find local work for those who have gone through addiction recovery programs.
- National H.I.R.E. Network – Established in 2001, the National Helping Individuals with Criminal Records Re-enter through Employment Network aims to assist people with criminal records to find gainful employment. They provide a very handy state by state directory that can get you pointed in the right direction for preparing for employment as a person with a criminal record. Even if you have a clean record, the employment directory can be beneficial to anyone who has gone through addiction recovery as well.
Other Employment Tips For Addiction Recovery Survivors
- Check with your old employer – Often times, it can be difficult to swallow your pride and return to a previous employer; however, being familiar with one another can be a major boon to your chances to employment. If your previous job was a trigger for your addiction make sure to avoid it.
- Volunteer – Many people who have gone through addiction recovery volunteer as a way to give back to the community. Not only does it give you a good feeling, but looks great on a resume. Many churches and religious organizations depend on volunteers and can be a great option for sharing your story and helping others on a similar path.
- Start looking at employment with lower expectations – Many people think that they can jump right back into the kind of work they were doing before their addiction recovery. While that is true for some, others find that a job with lower expectations gives them a better chance of creating a healthier work-life balance while you continue to heal. Check with temp agencies to work at jobs that are more labor-based, you may find you enjoy the work more than you thought.