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Factory workers at Munters facility in the US.jpg

Munters offers US inmates a second chance

Aug 24, 2023

In the United States, Munters is giving inmates a chance to start over by letting them work in the factory. The successful program in Amesbury, Massachusetts, was established before COVID-19 and has employed eight people so far.

Since 2019, Munters has worked closely with the Essex County Sheriff’s Department to help low-risk inmates gain work experience. The goal is to help them get reintroduced into society, gain new skills, and get a well-paying job after being released. 

Of the eight people who have completed the program, three have stayed on with Munters after their parole. 

Stephanie McNulty-Caplin, who supports the program on behalf of Munters, explains that prisoners come from all over the Northeast and that many decide to move back to where they came from when they have served their time. "We don't know what happens to them when they choose to leave, but we are happy to have at least helped them gain some work experience," she says. 

At Munters, everyone is treated equally. Just like regular employees, people in the work release program come in for an interview, see the facility, and meet with the managers to make sure it's a good fit. If all parties agree, they are hired as full-time employees with the same salary as everyone else. 

They start in the Foam Cell department where they insulate doors and panels. As their work progresses, they are given the opportunity to take on mechanical and production roles. 

Initially, there was some skepticism among the other employees toward the program. But the skepticism quickly faded when they realized that they too could end up in a similar situation in life. 

To qualify for the program, the inmates have gone through several checkpoints.

"Not everyone can apply for this program," says McNulty-Caplin. "You have to pass a lot of reviews and be mature enough and take responsibility to qualify for a job outside of prison." 

"If you think about it, any of us could end up in similar situations if we make the wrong decision," she says. "By welcoming them to Munters, we try to step into other people's shoes and treat them as we would want to be treated if it were us." 

The experience of getting workers in and working at the factory has been nothing but positive so far. 

"They're really good workers," McNulty-Caplin says. "They enjoy being here and learning new skills." 

"You never know where the next star employee is going to come from," she adds. 

Learn more about our community outreach work here.

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