The labor market consequences of ex-offender licensing laws
This project will create a publicly available database of statutory and administrative laws governing the ability of ex-offenders to be granted an occupational license for all universally licensed occupations in the United States. The newly created time-series will be linked with Census microdata, including data from the American Community Survey, Current Population Survey, and Survey of Income and Program Participation. The research team will then use the changes in these ex-offender occupational licensing laws over time and across states to estimate the impact of these laws on the labor market outcomes of workers, with particular attention to the labor market outcomes of minorities. There are very few high-quality studies of the impacts of such licensing laws on employment and earnings among individuals with felonies. This research creates a new, detailed, and valuable dataset of state occupational licensing laws, which will allow both this research team and future researchers to study the impact of these laws on wage and employment outcomes.