20+ year old felony drug convition RN job advice

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    I am about to graduate from an accelerated BSN/RN program. I have already been approved by the BON to sit for the NCLEX in the state of Texas. I have a felony drug conviction that is 20+ years old. No other problems since that incidence.

    Would anyone have any suggestions of where I might be hired?

    If you know of any RN with a felony conviction being hired or have encouraging advice please let me know. I am prepared to seek employment anywhere to get some experience.

    Thank you!
    rebad871 likes this.
  2. 16 Comments so far...

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    Congratulations on achieving an outstanding goal! I truly hope someone comes along and answer your question. Usually the answer is, "contact your state BON", which you did (and is encouraging to others seeking RN status). I would love to hear from others with this experience which I do not consider legal advice...just an inquiry. Best wishes!
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    If it was purged from your records then you should be fine because you don't need to mention it. If its still showing on your records it may be a problem because you have to mention it (they will find out through background check anyways) and most employers don't want to hire nurses who have had problems with drugs.

    If you have been drug free for those 20 plus years I would see if it can be removed it from my records to be on the safe side.

    Good luck with everything.
  5. 0
    If your record has been clean for that long and you can get people to vouch for what a good citizen you have been, you might try applying to the state board of pardons and parole and see if you can get a pardon. Find yourself a lawyer and ask about the procedure. Most attorneys do the initial consult for free or a minimal fee.
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    I forgot to mention a classmate of mine assisted her friend with obtaining employment at her facility, via DON, and the friend served a 2.5 year sentence for possession and distribution of a controlled substance. She was placed on a 2 or 3 year supervison with the BON. Presently, she is stilled employed.
    alidaroxana12 likes this.
  7. 4
    Thank you for all of your replies. From what I can tell, a lawyer will be happy to accept my money. To actually get a pardon from a governor is nearly impossible because most governors do not want to be seen as soft on crime. Plus hospitals can see seal records. The State of Texas does not allow expunction either. So it on there for good.

    I believe it will just be in His hands and His will. He placed it in my heart to be a medical missionary... So I am sure He will open the correct doors.

    There are about 250 hospitals in the state of Texas. Surely one of them will allow me a chance?? Not to mention other states?

    Any further suggestions will be most welcome!!! Please! I figure I need a good 3 years experience on the floor...

    So teacher08.. Your friend has a drug felony and she is working as an RN with the help of the Director of Nursing correct? What state is she in?

    Thanks!
    alidaroxana12, qpageg, GODfavorsme!, and 1 other like this.
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    She lives in IL. My classmate (which is the young lady's friend), spoke with the DON at the facility. The DON, bless her soul, decided to give the new graduate an opportunity and thus far everything is well. As others mentioned, every state BON is different. The IL BON actually met with the young lady and allowed her to speak about her situation, future endeavors, and submit character reference letters. Everything will work out well for you.
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    Hello I was wondering how your job search is coming along? Hopefully you have found something. I will probably have this same question in the next year or so. I too have a felony drug conviction from over 13 years ago. It was called engaging in organized criminal activity. I was placed on deferred adjudication probation for 10 years. So now in the process of getting all my paperwork to the BON. I'm really really nervous about the fact of being denied. I just hope everything goes well and I will be able to sit for my NCLEX.
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    Quote from vna77
    Hello I was wondering how your job search is coming along? Hopefully you have found something. I will probably have this same question in the next year or so. I too have a felony drug conviction from over 13 years ago. It was called engaging in organized criminal activity. I was placed on deferred adjudication probation for 10 years. So now in the process of getting all my paperwork to the BON. I'm really really nervous about the fact of being denied. I just hope everything goes well and I will be able to sit for my NCLEX.

    I am also awaiting to be approved by the BON, please keep us updated about you license....thanks!
  11. 4
    I would like to thank everyone for their posts and advice.
    For anyone out there with past criminal problems, I would like to encourage them to follow their dreams.

    My situtation worked out well. I was allowed to enter a school, get permission from the BON to sit for the NCLEX, and obtain an RN license. Keep in mind my criminal history was isolated and it was 20 years in the past. I also have completely given my life to Christ and live for Him only. All of my actions I do to glorify Him alone (now). So I am sure I had divine help!

    Upon graduation I was offered many jobs including a doctor's office, a hospice facility, a dialysis center, and a few hospitals. There were a few employers who did not offer employment due to their corporate policy. So all doors are not open to me but on the flip side, not all doors are closed either.

    So my advice to anyone with an isolated past criminal history is this: If you have truly changed and can prove it, you CAN work in the medical industry. I would advise overdoing your education with excellent grades to compensate for the past errors in judgement. 3-5 solid character references should help with the BON. You want to prove that you are serious and committed to being the best nurse/doctor etc. possible. People's lives and trust will be in your hands. Make sure you do not abuse either.

    I hope this helps! God Bless!
    vintagemother, alidaroxana12, qpageg, and 1 other like this.


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