Guam gets $100K U.S. DOL grant to help ex-cons find jobs

The U.S. Department of Labor has awarded a $100,000 grant to Guam to help convicted criminals find jobs after their release from jail.

A total of $2,234,122 was awarded to 23 states and Guam, which was the only territory to receive a portion of the competitive grant awarded by the U.S. DOL Fidelity Bonding Demonstration Grant program.

“In line with Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero’s platform on adult reentry, this support from U.S. Department of Labor will aid those with hiring barriers while also protecting the interests of the employers,” Guam DOL Director David Dell’Isola stated in a press release.

Guam received the maximum amount possible under the program. The grant will be used to procure insurance.

A fidelity bond is a form of insurance that covers employers’ losses as a result of fraudulent acts.

The insurance coverage gives an ex-offender a better chance of being considered for work and contributing to society while relieving the anxiety of the employer. In case of theft or embezzlement, the employer will be covered financially through this grant.

Guam DOL applied for the grant in April to fund Project Chagi Ta'lu, which is CHamoru for "try again." The goal of the project is to reduce Guam's recidivism rate, which currently is about 46%.

Project CHagi Ta’Lu will be administered through the American Job Center, a division of Guam DOL.

The U.S. Department of Labor established the Federal Bonding Program in 1966 to provide Fidelity Bonds for “at-risk,” hard-to-place job seekers.

The goal of the grants is to increase employment outcomes for people with criminal records, educate employers and the public on the availability and benefits of fidelity bonds, and encourage employers to hire people with criminal records.

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