INSTITUTE INDEX: Expanding access to good jobs after jail

A growing number of states and local governments across the South have banned questions about past criminal convictions from their job applications. (Graphic from Ban the Box Nashville's Facebook page.)

Number of U.S. adults who have a serious misdemeanor or felony arrest or conviction record: 70 million

Number of people released from state and federal prisons each year: 630,000

Number of states with laws restricting employment for those with felony conviction records or for people with certain non-felony convictions such as drug crimes: 50

Average number of mandatory bans and restrictions per state that block people with felony convictions from employment in certain occupations or industries, or from obtaining certain types of occupational or business licenses: 123

Number of such bans and restrictions in Virginia: 127

Florida: 168

in Texas: 248

In Louisiana: 389

Rank of Louisiana among states with the most such restrictions: 1

Among states with the highest incarceration rates: 1

Number of states that have adopted so-called "ban the box" policies that remove any conviction history questions from state job applications and delay the background check inquiry until later in the hiring process: 20

Of those states, number in the South: 2*

Number of states that bar private employers from asking questions about criminal history on job applications: 7

Of those states, number in the South: 0

Date on which the Virginia Senate approved a measure to ban the box, sending it to the state House for consideration: 1/25/2016

Date on which a state senate leader in Alabama said he intends to introduce legislation to ban the box: 1/26/2016

Date on which ban-the-box legislation advanced in the Tennessee Senate with bipartisan support: 2/23/2016

Number of cities and counties nationwide that have also adopted ban-the-box policies: more than 100

Date on which a ban-the-box policy went into effect for municipal government jobs in Nashville, Tennessee: 1/1/2016

Month in which Asheville, North Carolina — one of the region's largest employers — banned the box from municipal job applications: 1/2016

Date on which Birmingham became the first city in Alabama to ban the box for municipal jobs: 2/4/2016

Year in which President Obama directed federal agencies to ban the box from employment applications: 2015

* Georgia and Virginia, both of which adopted ban-the-box policies in 2015.

(Click on figure to go to source. Many of the figures in this index are from a new report titled "Jobs After Jail: Ending the Prison to Poverty Pipeline" by the Alliance for a Just Society.)