LDP mulling Olympic job aid for ex-convicts

JIJI

As part of efforts to strengthen public safety in the lead-up to the 2020 Tokyo Oympics, the Liberal Democratic Party will consider boosting measures to help people with criminal records find jobs.

The party will study establishing a subsidy program for employers hiring ex-convicts and a system under which companies employing such people would receive preferential treatment in public works bidding, sources said.

The LDP hopes that necessary funds will be included in the 2015 budget, the sources said.

The party also believes that securing jobs for former inmates would help prevent them from returning to their criminal ways.

According to the government’s annual report on crime, released in November, 45.3 percent of people who were arrested in 2012 were repeat offenders.

Among ex-convicts, the recidivism rate for those without jobs was four times higher than for those who had jobs, according to the Justice Ministry.

Some 70 percent of those who went back behind bars were not employed when they re-offended.

The LDP’s special committee on measures to help former criminals find work will compile steps to prevent such people from committing crimes again, the sources said.

Currently, companies that employ former criminals on a trial basis can receive a one-time incentive of up to ¥120,000 per hire.

However, a member of the committee said that the effects of the measure are temporary and limited.