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Does Waste Management Hire Felons?

If you’ve got a felony on your record and you’re wondering, does Waste Management hire felons, we’ve got good news for you.

Keep reading for all the details.

Waste Management is the largest waste handling company in the United States with over $18 billion dollars in revenue in 2021. The company provides a wide variety of employment opportunities throughout the country and offers good pay and benefits.

Does Waste Management Hire Felons in 2024?

Does Waste Management Hire Felons

Having a felony on your record won’t automatically lead to rejection when you apply for a job with Waste Management. The company hasn’t made any official statements about hiring felons, and like most employers, they keep their hiring policies private, but current employees report that felons are often hired.

The Waste Management website includes a notice about criminal records for applicants in New York.

New York State Article 23-A prohibits employers from discriminating against candidates because of previous criminal convictions. The law requires employers to evaluate applicants on a case-by-case basis and consider the seriousness of the offense and its bearing on a candidate’s ability to do the job.

While this law is specific to New York state, the company appears to follow these fair hiring guidelines on a companywide basis.

Is Waste Management A Second Chance Employer?

Waste Management hasn’t signed up for any of the formal second chance initiatives like Ban the Box or The Second Chance Business Coalition. But actions speak louder than words, and because this company hires felons, it’s clear that they believe in giving felons a second chance.

What Kind Of Offenses Does Waste Management Turn Down?

Whether you’ll be hired depends on the nature of the felony offense, how long ago it occurred, and the type of job you’re applying for. Hiring decisions are made on a case-by-case basis.

If you’ve got a criminal record that includes violence or sexual assault, you could be turned down.

For driving jobs, a DUI or other driving offense will be a problem.

Does Waste Management Do Background Checks?

Does Waste Management Do Background Checks?

Yes, a background check will be carried out on all applicants.

The background check will confirm your identity and your right to work, verify any education, experience, or licenses you’re required to have, and search criminal records databases to see if you have committed any offenses.

If you’ve applied for a driving job, your driving record will also be checked for traffic violations, DUIs, and accidents.

Background checks take place once you’ve been through the interview process and the company wants to hire you. You’ll receive a conditional job offer pending the outcome of your background check.

Previous Entry: Does Costco Hire Felons?

How Far Back Does The Background Check Go?

Employees report that the background check goes back at least 7 years.

Some states limit the background check to 7 years for non-safety-sensitive positions, which means that employers can’t go back any further.

States with a 7-year limit:

  • California
  • Colorado
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Mexico
  • New York
  • Texas
  • Washington

Don’t let the background check deter you from applying. Waste Management hires felons and many of those were hired with a recent felony on their record.

We’ve even seen a report about Waste Management visiting a women’s prison to talk to soon-to-be-released prisoners about working for the company.

Will I Need To Pass A Drug Test?

Will I Need To Pass A Drug Test?

You will need to pass a drug test for some jobs at Waste Management.

If you’re applying for a driving job or an apprentice driving job with Waste Management, you’ll need to pass a standard Department of Transportation (DOT) drug test.

For the DOT test you’ll need to provide a urine sample which will be analyzed for the following substances:

  • Opiates
  • Cocaine
  • Marijuana
  • Amphetamines and methamphetamine
  • Phencyclidine (PCP)

Please be aware that you’ll still be tested for marijuana in a legal state. Marijuana is still illegal at the federal level and if you test positive for marijuana or any other illegal drug, as a CDL holder you won’t be able to drive any commercial motor vehicle until you’ve completed the Return to Duty Process.

Drug Testing For Other Waste Management Positions

  • Driver’s Helper (Residential) – Yes
  • Mechanic – Yes
  • Sorter – No
  • Laborer – No
  • Tire Technician – No
  • Heavy Equipment Operator – No
  • Welder – No

What Jobs Can A Felon Get At Waste Management?

You can apply for any job that you’ve got the skills and experience for. If you don’t have any suitable experience, then you can apply for an entry-level position.

Entry-level positions at Waste Management involve repetitive manual work at waste sorting facilities and landfills.


At Waste Management a laborer’s main duties include:

  • Loading and unloading vehicles
  • Digging and filling holes
  • Lifting and moving material

Landfill Laborer

To work at the landfill, you should be prepared to work in a noisy, smelly, dirty environment where you’ll be exposed to all weather conditions.

Your main duties will include:

  • Manually picking up wind-blown litter from the site boundary and adjacent area.
  • Driving a mobile vacuum around the perimeter and adjacent area.
  • Moving building materials and maintenance tools.
  • Using maintenance tools.
  • Sorting and removing metal, white goods, lumber and cardboard from the refuse pile.


A Waste Management sorter works at the recycling facility. Main duties include:

  • Inspecting and sorting recyclable waste materials according to type and grade
  • Stacking boxes
  • Keeping the work area clean
  • Loading materials onto the conveyor

Convenience Site Worker

Waste Management convenience sites are open to the public for dropping off waste and recyclables. Your main duties will include:

  • Placing waste into the appropriate bins
  • Helping load and unload the garbage truck
  • Operating hoist equipment on the back of the truck
  • Keeping the area clean

Is A Job At Waste Management A Good Choice For Felons?

Is A Job At Waste Management A Good Choice For Felons?

If you are able to secure a job with Waste Management, you may receive a hiring bonus which is always a big help.

All employees are eligible for the free education and upskilling program the company provides, and if you’re applying for an entry-level position because you don’t have any skills, then the upskilling program is a very valuable opportunity.

As someone with a felony on your record, acquiring new skills is an excellent way to move up to a better position within Waste Management, and to improve your future employment prospects and earning potential.

How To Apply For A Job At Waste Management

Search the Waste Management careers website for a suitable job in your area, then click on the Apply Now button.

Complete the online application and make sure you answer all the questions honestly.

If your application is successful, you’ll be called for an in person interview or a phone interview. During your interview, you’ll have an opportunity to discuss your offense and present your character references.

Waste Management is interested in candidates who are prepared to work hard in work in a team-focused environment.

Final Thoughts

Waste Management hires felons on a case-by-case basis. Many felons have found secure work with the company, so if you see a job that interests you, you should definitely apply.

You’ll have to pass a background check, but don’t let that put you off. People have been hired with recent felonies on their record, and the company has even recruited from prison.

Working at the city landfill or recycling center isn’t a glamorous job, but it’s honest work, and at Waste Management all employees are offered the opportunity to obtain a free college education as well as access to free upskilling courses, so you won’t be limited to waste sorting forever.