Fight labor shortages by hiring people with criminal records. Here’s how to start.

American City Business Journals

Nearly half of U.S. Rubber Recycling Inc.’s 70 employees have previously been incarcerated.

The Colton, California-based company takes used tires and turns them into custom flooring for fitness centers and sound-absorbing underlayment for multistory buildings and has doubled its sales over the course of the pandemic — a fact that CEO Jeff Baldassari attributes at least partly to having a growing workforce at a time when the labor shortage has made it hard to recruit and retain workers.

“You have to talk to these people. You gotta take a chance at people. And I am not saying everyone is going to work,” Baldassari said in an interview. “More times than not it’s not going to. It was worth it.”