Hacker News Re-Imagined

Tell HN: I'm Afraid We're Shutting Down

So it’s with deep professional and personal sadness that I must announce my plans to shut down 70 Million Resources, Inc., the parent company of 70 Million Jobs (the 1st national, for-profit employment platform for people with criminal records) and Commissary Club (the first mobile social network for this population).

When I launched 70MR in 2016, I was motivated to build a company that could short circuit the pernicious cycles of recidivism in this country--cycles that destroy lives, tear apart families and decimate communities. I sought to disrupt the sleepy reentry industry by applying technology, focusing on data, employing an aggressive, accountable team, and moving with some urgency. And for the first time, approaching the challenge as a national, for-profit venture.

This approach, which I named “RaaS,” (Reentry as a Service), turned out to be wildly effective, and by the beginning of 2020, we were delivering on our mission of driving “double bottom line returns”: build a big, successful business and do massive social good. With the help of Y Combinator and nearly 1,500 investors, I assembled a team and got to work.

We succeeded in facilitating employment for thousands of deserving men and women and became operationally profitable.

However, the pandemic had other plans for us. When it hit in force in March 2020, companies made wholesale terminations of nearly all our people, and continued their halt in hiring for two years.

Our revenue dropped like a rock to almost nothing. I immediately responded by paring our expenses to the bone and began letting team members go. There was no opportunity to raise additional funding, so I began injecting my own money into the company—money I barely have—just to keep the lights on.

When the economy and job market began storming back, we were inundated with inbound requests for our services. Our perseverance seemed to be paying off. Except now we were hit with a new gut punch: “The Great Resignation.” Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

It became obvious that we lacked the resources to weather this new storm while hoping and praying the world would normalize soon. (It still hasn’t.)

Our coffers are empty. We’ve incurred a relatively small amount of debt (that I personally guaranteed) that I hope to negotiate down. All employees have been paid what they were owed (except for me). I will explore sale of assets we hold.

On a personal note, I can’t tell you how grateful and humbled I’ve been that many would entrust their investment or business with me. For a person who’s done time in prison (me), it’s almost impossible to ask for someone’s trust. I have not yet forgiven myself for things I did which ultimately got me into trouble. But I will be eternally grateful to those that assisted me in my efforts to settle the score and win back my karma.

From the beginning I was blessed by an unbelievable team of smart, funny, passionate young people who shared my ambition to cause change. They stuck with me/us until the very end.

I’m most saddened by the millions of formerly incarcerated men and women who we won’t be able to help. These are some of the most sincere, honest, and heroic people I’ve ever met. It was my life’s honor to work with them.

I’m pretty sure I’ll continue my reentry work. Several prominent organizations have indicated their interests in me assuming a leadership role. I need to work, and I need to continue my work.

I’m so sorry for this outcome, despite the good we’ve done. I’m not sure we could have done anything differently or better, but ultimately, I take full responsibility. Needless to say, if you have any thoughts or suggestions, please don’t hesitate to reach out, here or at Richard@70MillionJobs.com.

This has been the greatest experience of my life; it couldn’t have happened without my getting a second chance.

Richard

  • 1633 points
  • 1 month ago

  • @RBBronson123
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Tell HN: I'm Afraid We're Shutting Down


@PragmaticPulp 1 month

Replying to @RBBronson123 🎙

> we were inundated with inbound requests for our services. Our perseverance seemed to be paying off. Except now we were hit with a new gut punch: “The Great Resignation.” Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

Can you clarify: Were the employees of your 70MR organization hesitant to return to work and quitting after a few days? Or were the people who requested your services quitting jobs several days after placement?

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@markkat 1 month

It really saddens me to hear this. It was an honor to get to know you as batchmates. Your passion and drive for 70MR made a mark upon me.

I know that this is just another beginning for you, full of new opportunities, and that you will continue to help and inspire people. Godspeed!

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@jsiaajdsdaa 1 month

Congrats to you Richard for what you achieved, and I wish you the best in finding a role that will help you stabilize and continue.

There are very strange earthquakes and disconnects happening in the labor market right now and I appreciate seeing this honest perspective on the reality you were trying to change.

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@logicalmonster 1 month

> When the economy and job market began storming back, we were inundated with inbound requests for our services. Our perseverance seemed to be paying off. Except now we were hit with a new gut punch: “The Great Resignation.” Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

I don't know what's possible for you financially and how much runway you might have left, but if you can stick around a bit longer, the coming economic turbulence is a prime time to reinvigorate the business.

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@RickWolter 1 month

For anyone in the thread wondering how a felon might get ahead...

Im a formerly incarcerated software engineer. I now run a non-profit org called Underdog Devs dedicated to getting formerly incarcerated people into software engineering jobs.

We have over 450 members. We experienced engineers from all over the industry that will guide you. We also have a program called Project Underdog where we offer a stipend to pay their bills and have them pair program all week long with various mentors. Its led by the brilliant Jessica McKellar and has proven to be better than any bootcamp or CS program ive experienced.

Reach out if you would like some support.

https://www.underdogdevs.org

and on Twitter @UnderdogDevs

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@chrisweekly 1 month

Wow. Thanks for sharing. Congrats on your personal story of redemption, and for all the good you've done for others. I'm impressed and moved. Agreed w others here, recommend hibernation if possible.

On a recidivism-related tangent, a close friend of mine runs a nonprofit called "Guitars Behind Bars" -- https://guitarsbehindbars.com -- which does like it says on the tin, providing instruments and a musical outlet to convicts. It's had profound positive effects on the inmates who've participated (and their jailers/wardens, too). Bringing it up here bc stories about helping ex-convicts don't often feature on the HN front page.

Power to you, Richard. Keep fighting the good fight, and thank you for being a light for others.

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@lr4444lr 1 month

I think your idea was sound, and the company just got hit by a bad set of economic and global circumstances. I hope you'll consider restarting a similar venture once things improve, a stronger one having learned the lessons from the first go around.

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@danans 1 month

> When it hit in force in March 2020, companies made wholesale terminations of nearly all our people, and continued their halt in hiring for two years.

Is this because the people you were representing were mostly in sectors affected by the pandemic (travel, restaurant, etc), or were they were mostly "contingent workforce" jobs that are first to be cut?

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@thread_id 1 month

Have you considered reorganizing as a not-for-profit and then seeking funding from foundations or combination of croud sourcing plus foundations.

You have a proven model and track record - clients that need support and businesses that are willing to participate. Well defined funding needs and a well defined road map for expanding your network nationally.

This way your idea gets to live on, you get to stay involved with your dream project, you get paid (and made whole as a creditor).

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@treme 1 month

you had a dream and gave it hella shot Richard.

Respect & Gl on your next chapter in life

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@djtalia 1 month

This is truly a sad time. You were doing such good work, and I'm sorry you're suffering through this.

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@RBBronson123 1 month

When I announced the launch of 70 Million Jobs on HN back in 2017, it proved to be one of the most widely read and discussed posts ever on the site. I was totally blown away. Once again, I am struck by the incredibly sensitive and supportive tenor of the reactions to my news here.

For some context, besides having a criminal record, I was/am a solo founder who somehow talked his way into Y Comb. Perhaps most surprising is my age: I'm 68. To my friends I grew up with, I'm f'-ing Steve Jobs. To you guys, you'd no doubt see me as the bumbling great uncle at Thanksgiving that isn't allowed to touch the TV remote control.

So it's all been pretty weird. (wanna see it get weirder? google me and check out my past)

As you all know, doing a 2-sided marketplace is always tough. But imagine if neither side of your marketplace was convinced they wanted your product. Chances are you keep your distance from such an undertaking ("Build something people want," my YC t-shirt says). I build something arguably no one wanted, but I knew they needed. Does that make me a schmuck? Probably.

But to those who've never gotten close to someone with as record--particularly someone with a different color than you, who was brought into an unfair world from Day One, someone who wanted the same things as you, but never quite figured out how to get there, I'm here to say that some of these folks are the most honorable, humble, appreciate, hard-working people you could imagine. They just want a peaceful life, to take care of their family and get a good night sleep.

So that's where the mission comes in, and that's when zealots are born. The truth is, I have nothing in my life other than my work. No wife, no kids, no home, nothing. But the satisfaction I got from helping these heroic folks, and the smiles I'd see on their kids' faces when they were reunited, meant/means the world to me. If you don't have something like this in your life, I urge you to find it. Your karma will thank you for it.

I invite you all to ask your questions and continue to opine. If you have something to share that isn't merely an attempt to win an argument, I'd appreciate your taking the time to email me. More importantly, if you're ever in a position to hire someone with a record, take the chance. Life is too short not to take chances. Richard

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@buf 1 month

This really bums me out.

I was a convicted felon at 18 years old, poor, living on the street.

It wasn't any government re-integration program that helped me, it was a random person I met in highschool.

I worked my way through everything -> college -> jobs -> startups -> lucky windfalls -> owning my own company. I've immigrated to Europe (3 times in the last 10 years technically), beating the legal issues each time.

And finally, after 17 years, I'm no longer a felon thanks to a pardon and expungement.

I really wish something like 70MR would stay up. Not everyone can be as lucky as me. Is there some place I can donate?

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@philip1209 1 month

Have you considered converting to a non-profit? I'd support that financially.

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@scardycat 1 month

Have you considered switching to a non-profit? I am not saying for-profit is bad but you may have more avenues for fund raising as a non-profit.

Alternatively, gofundme for this would be very successful I would assume. You could also think of a some sort of corporate sponsorship. Corporates can write off for supporting program like this. Again, non-profit here would help a lot.

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@RBBronson123 1 month

There seems to be some confusion here over my use of the expression, "The Great Resignation." https://www.investopedia.com/the-great-resignation-5199074 This is a economic/workforce phenomenon that began amidst the pandemic and continues. (The NY Times reported today that there are 11.4 million unfilled jobs. That's historically off the charts.)

My company operates/ed a job board and a staffing business. Both ran like traditional job boards (Indeed, Zip Recruiter, etc) and staffing companies (Kelly, Adecco, etc.), except being focused entirely on the formerly incarcerated. This is how large employers source many, many employees.

The staffing business was much larger. In this model, we serve as the hirer-of-record, and essentially lease out the workers to our client employers, who cover all our costs (wages, unemployment insurance, taxes, etc.) plus our mark-up (profit). It's a high volume, low margin business.

During the Great Resignation, we found it took 10x the time and effort to get someone placed, eroding our already thin margins. Plus, if a worker left (which they began doing at a great rate), we're obligated to replace them. All of this made it pretty much impossible for us to make money. (Again, we're a for-profit business). I hope this clarifies things.

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@v1l 1 month

Respect

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@dingleberry420 1 month

Can the title be changed to be less clickbaity? Reads like HN is shutting down

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@kingcharles 1 month

As a current prisoner who is yet to be released, let me say thank you for everything you've done.

I've spent the last 9 years around felons and it is sad as most of them never had a chance in life, being born either into an environment that practically guaranteed incarceration, or being born with mental health issues that this nation fails to treat and instead incarcerates.

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@yieldcrv 1 month

> so I began injecting my own money into the company—money I barely have—just to keep the lights on.

I'm never doing this again

If you need another data point

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@rPlayer6554 1 month

Thanks for all your work on this project. Very inspiring what you set out to do.

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@FpUser 1 month

I am usually very cynical when I hear about companies with good intentions. This however touched every string of my heart. You do not have to be so humble as you've done an amazing and honorable job. You helped people to get out of that death spiral where fucked-up Government on par with some big corporations are trying to keep them in.

To them - rot in hell fucking vultures.

To you - thanks and praise for what you've done and best luck for whatever you do in the future.

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@xbar 1 month

Thank you for your efforts Richard.

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@asimpleusecase 1 month

What you have done, take on a seriously hard problem that has real benefits for marginalised people and society as a whole, is exactly the type of risky innovation that we need more of. Pause, heal, and come back again.

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@Irongirl1 1 month

Why on Earth are you shutting down rather than offering discounted tech help on a nationwide scale??? I have to put up some static sites and transfer domains and a bunch of icky stuff and I'm sure I'm not alone when I say there are lots of folks like me who can't afford full priced, massive rfps, but would love to be able to buy just what we need-piece by piece or hour by hour at a reasonable price from workers right here in the US. Workify.co used to offer this but the founder pivoted and sold before I could ever use them.

Also so many need social media help, getting online for the first time...so small businesses don't even have websites or accurate info on their pages.

I think a simple site where you offer whatever services you can perform: tech, landscaping, painting etc at some some of discount for pre-sale would really surprise you with how well it does. No seems to want to do anything...and if you have such a large workforce that actually wants to work, then you have a goldmine. Things still need to be done desperately.

You can find an idea of services from looking at workify.cos old pages on archive.org. And pivoting isn't just for tech firms...you moving to provide service directly would come with some challenges, but you seem like you could handle them.

I noticed from your zip code that you are in San Francisco, have you consider a sale or merger with Labor Ready or something similar?

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@remmargorp64 1 month

Why don't you open source it and pay for hosting costs via donated funds instead of just shutting down completely? How much money does it really take to host a job web site anyways?

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@adultSwim 1 month

The larger fight continues, to treat people who have been to prison with dignity and respect.

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@Hnaomyiph 1 month

I’m not a felon but get so upset at our current system that tries to pretend to care about people with records but in actuality leaves them to rot.

I’m a business owner and my first employee and current operations manager is a felon. I knew this prior as I worked with him before, before starting my own business. He ended up in that position and doing 3 years of prison because America for a lot of people sucks. It sucked for him and he was in a position where it was either do felonious things or be homeless. So he made an obvious choice.

He’s struggled with work since then, because as soon as they see felon they tend to disregard him. It sucks. I know his case isn’t standard, but it also isn’t rare. Society treats these people like lepers and I hope the tides change on this, or we get actual criminal reform. Because what we’ve got right now OP’s business should have went under because it wasn’t needed anymore. But that’s not the case.

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@quadcore 1 month

You have as rare a courage as Steve Jobs and others if you'd ask me. The only startup I remembered in a long time if that count. I sincerely hope you've had fun and that you'll keep enjoying your life. Speaking of which Id recommend to laugh it a good time and move on. Dont play what if and Cluedo because you are exactly where you should be, in a positive way.

The past doesnt matter, only the present moment does and it's wonderful.

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@jdoliner 1 month

Very sad this didn't work out. This story rings of the old saying: no good deed goes unpunished.

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@sara-NPF 1 month

I just sent you an email from sara@northpinefoundation.ca in case it goes to your junk folder

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@f0e4c2f7 1 month

Richard it is better to have failed at this than to succeed at a lot of easier things.

I found 70 million jobs inspirational and I'm proud of the work you did.

Someday someone else will move this idea a little further down the field.

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@snarkypixel 1 month

Potentially could reboot the startup after the downturn with your learnings, seems like something that really should exist.

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@kingkawn 1 month

Thank you for trying

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@janejeon 1 month

Could the title please be changed to something that doesn't sound like HN itself is shutting down? This is incredibly misleading.

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@sara-NPF 1 month

I sent you an email from sara@northpinefoundation.ca in case it went to your junk folder

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@moneywoes 1 month

What can we do to help?

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@f38zf5vdt 1 month

Just chiming in to say I really hope this gets rescued. Everyone deserves a second chance.

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@torbTurret 1 month

“These are some of the most sincere, honest, and heroic people I’ve ever met.”

Yeah, I think we’re too hard as a nation on ex-cons. But they’re not heroes because they went through self-imposed hardships (and almost always at the expense of someone innocent). And they’re certainly among the lower rungs of honesty by categorization. Nowhere near the top.

If this sounds harsh, just act their victims.

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@squarefoot 1 month

Whoever profits from the private jail system is probably celebrating now the potential influx of new "customers" in their "hotels".

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@thedudeabides5 1 month

this sucks

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@999900000999 1 month

Please add a donation link, even if it just goes to your debts, you did God's work.

One could imagine if we didn't scar people with lifelong records how many would integrate back into society.

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@supersync 1 month

Richard - thank you for sharing your journey with us.

Your work and achievements are an inspiration, even now.

Sometimes progress really is one person at a time. You & your team changed the lives of millions.

My own social startup failed. It is so hard to watch your dream, all that you are, die.

All I can pass on is that your journey is not done & taking good care of yourself is how you’ll be able to take it.

My sincere wish is that you allow your karma balance to settle.

You deserve to enjoy life, to do work you find meaningful, and to be remembered for your contributions.

You overcame incredible odds time & again. If anyone has proven investment in second chances make a difference, you have.

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@toomuchtodo 1 month

Hi Richard, I'd like to donate towards retiring the debt you've personally guaranteed. How can I do this?

Thanks for trying, it's more than most do. My genuine condolences you were unable to maintain traction due to the macro.

(agree with 0des' sibling comment, hibernate the effort vs this being the death of it)

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@arionhardison 1 month

Have you considered contacting "Homeboy Industries". It seems like what you have would be a good fit to help them scale their org. https://homeboyindustries.org/

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@fnordpiglet 1 month

This ruined my whole day. What a tragedy.

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@newfonewhodis 1 month

> Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

I don't know enough about your business. Why does employee mobility hurt you?

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@0des 1 month

> Several prominent organizations have indicated their interests in me assuming a leadership role. I need to work, and I need to continue my work.

Take the job so you dont starve, and so you can begin to rebuild. It's not time to shut the doors, it's just time to take a knee and get your game plan together. It ain't over yet, it's just halftime.

This will help: https://marker.medium.com/reflecting-on-my-failure-to-build-...

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@ushakov 1 month

you should be proud of yourselves

i'm sure your company will be missed by those who you helped get new opportunities in life

it's better to try and fail changing the world, than never try, live a meaningless, unfulfilling, but comfortable life

you gave a shot, but i'm sure you didn't run out of ammo!

try again next time!

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@api_or_ipa 1 month

Wish I had heard about 70million before this post. As many other commenters have mentioned, I too am happy to make a donation to keep your lights on and your mission alive. The biggest tragedy in America is the wholesale disenfranchisement of millions of people due to incarceration.

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@daniel-cussen 1 month

Your going out of business doesn't undo the great things you did for all those people who needed that second chance.

Turns out, for instance, Halcyon Molecular was similar, it went bust losing tons of money but it let me get a decent wage after all the employment discrimination I suffered for standing up to torture (false imprisonment, so very similar, had a gap in my resume I couldn't explain because I didn't realize there was an April in 2009, it just hurt to think about that moment in my life). That $20-an-hour job allowed me to create abnormal speedups for many algorithms, leading to https://fgemm.com, which I'm working on now.

It was my second chance. And it created the tech it was meant to, just not the way the investors expected.

EDIT: can't reply to selimthegrim except here, at the limit of posts. I will get it working. I know it's not up yet, it's coming soon. Currently ironing out the algorithms instead.

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@ransom1538 1 month

Why are sites that should be self sufficient shut down? It's a place where people can post jobs and find jobs. Why must it end? As long as the server bill is paid. I am sure [money bag types] even on this forum would pay this if the bill was published.

If not can you give permission to scape and re-release it?

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@tyingq 1 month

Sad to hear this, and appreciate your efforts.

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@mwigdahl 1 month

I'm really sorry to hear that your company's good work is coming to an end. I wish you all the best in your future career and I hope you are able to find new ways to help address the needs of this community of people.

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@milesdyson_phd 1 month

When the economy and job market began storming back, we were inundated with inbound requests for our services. Our perseverance seemed to be paying off. Except now we were hit with a new gut punch: “The Great Resignation.” Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

As in the workers you placed, employees of 70MR? Why would they leave after a few days? Can you expand on this?

It became obvious that we lacked the resources to weather this new storm while hoping and praying the world would normalize soon. (It still hasn’t.)

What does normalize mean to you (or 70MR)?

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@youeseh 1 month

If you can find a way to go on life support for a little while - perhaps just shut down temporarily, then it will pay off, I think.

Over the next few months to a couple of years:

- Interest rates will keep going up and Quantitative tightening will happen.

- There will be a recession.

- A lot of people who resigned greatly will be broke and in need of work.

- Your services will be needed, and in a big way.

The person who finds what they love to do is rare, but the person who finds their calling is rarer still.

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@iepathos 1 month

Really sorry to hear this. Good luck with your next endeavor

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@clausnitzercan 1 month

Richard,

When I think of the great people I met from our batch, you’re at the top of the list. Your passion and gratitude were contagious. I was always rooting for you and I will continue to do so. That letter you wrote to the entire batch at the culmination of our YC experience remains one of the great missives I’ve received. You’re top shelf, sir!

Onward! Steven

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@mooneater 1 month

Love the vision, respect the dedication, thanks for the inspiration! A true gentleman and scholar tips hat.

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@spicybright 1 month

A felony on your record might as well be a gang tattoo on your face.

First I'm hearing of you unfortunately, but thank you so much for your contribution to this terrible issue so many face.

You not only changed many people pull themselves back up, but you put an imprint on the world that yes, people with criminal backgrounds in their past as just as worthy of opportunities as anyone else.

Wish you the best going forward and, if it's the right path for you to walk, wish you luck trying again.

And post your next endeavors on HN more, I'd love to hear about it ;)

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@ChrisMarshallNY 1 month

Thanks for your Service, Richard.

I do know that there's a chap from Florida that has done something similar. I can't remember exactly what his HN handle was, but we had a rather prickly exchange, some time back.

If you are interested in providing services like this in the future, he might not be a bad person to team up with.

I wish you (and he) the very best of luck, in your future endeavors. I'm pretty big on that ol' "second chance" thing.

[EDITED TO ADD] This article is interesting. What makes it even more interesting, is the author of the article (It's NYT, so there may be a paywall): https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/04/opinion/clean-slate-incar...

[EDITED TO ADD (2)] The person I mentioned is one of your replies. He runs Underdog Devs: https://www.underdogdevs.org/

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@latchkey 1 month

Sorry to hear about this. It seems like a wonderful altruistic service.

Were you able to apply for PPP (and other covid related) loans / grants? I feel like of all businesses, yours should have been easy to get something like that.

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@gabereiser 1 month

Oh this is heartbreaking. I remember reading about your company and mission and fully supporting it (while not fiscally). I’m a huge fan of hiring the right people, no matter their background.

This is truly sad. I think the business model is still high in demand but maybe not right now as companies all over are paring down expenses and tightening coffers.

Bravo! I sincerely hope you try again.

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@BenoitEssiambre 1 month

I'm sorry for the outcome. This is is quite a gracious post given the circumstances.

Do you think with the Fed fighting inflation and the jobs market potentially turning in a year or so from now, that going into hibernation and relaunching when the economy has more need for this would make sense?

Asking for a friend who launched a two sided jobs marketplace for a niche market a few months ago and has a heck of a hard time attracting job seekers.

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@strickman 1 month

statement 1 - "These are some of the most sincere, honest, and heroic people I’ve ever met."

statement 2 - "And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days."

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@conioh 1 month

There's a huge plot hole in the story.

> When the economy and job market began storming back, we were inundated with inbound requests for our services. Our perseverance seemed to be paying off. Except now we were hit with a new gut punch: “The Great Resignation.” Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

I couldn't understand how "The Great Resignation" made the situation more difficult for 70MJ. I've read the follow up comment[GrRegCm] and it didn't make things any clearer:

> During the Great Resignation, we found it took 10x the time and effort to get someone placed, eroding our already thin margins. Plus, if a worker left (which they began doing at a great rate), we're obligated to replace them. All of this made it pretty much impossible for us to make money. (Again, we're a for-profit business). I hope this clarifies things.

It doesn't.

There's a _sort of_ incoherency and inconsistency here.

On the one hand the "formerly incarcerated" have a hard time (re)-integrating into society. Among other difficulties they struggle harder than others, ceteris paribus, finding a job.

In turn this has, supposedly, certain negative effects like "the pernicious cycles of recidivism in this country--cycles that destroy lives, tear apart families and decimate communities"

That's both the societal issue you set out to improve and what made the for-profit venture viable.

But on the other hand the same "formerly incarcerated" can allow themselves to "often leave after only a few days", "which they began doing at a great rate". I guess the welfare system in the US is quite extensive if people - and not just any people but ex-cons - can allow themselves to quit jobs after a few days with nothing else in the horizon.

I'll qualify all of that and note that, as I wrote above, it's only _sort of_ inconsistent. It's possible that they don't have good alternatives, but they see everyone else quitting, including spoiled and overindulged by 2021 tech sector employees, and think their circumstances apply. Or they don't think but just do what everyone else.

It's also possible that I'm still missing here something and my whole analysis is wrong because of that.

But it's also possible that "The Great Resignation" isn't the reason for the company's failing.

I'm not convinced. If I did miss something I'd be happy to hear.

[GrRegCm]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=31600686

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@onlyrealcuzzo 1 month

Sorry to hear. Sounds like a great service.

But curious about this...

> When the economy and job market began storming back, we were inundated with inbound requests for our services. Our perseverance seemed to be paying off. Except now we were hit with a new gut punch: “The Great Resignation.” Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

Why were they leaving after only a few days when before they weren't?

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@acalzycalzy 1 month

«Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.»

Something i was arguing in another post and all you tech warriors sitting in your desk chairs didn’t think it could be true.

People are lazy

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@helloworld11 1 month

>There was no opportunity to raise additional funding, so I began injecting my own money into the company—money I barely have—just to keep the lights on.

Honestly curious: If your company managed to become profitable and has been operating since 2016, how were you not able to generate enough business or personal income to sustain the company further from the point you describe above? I'm sorry if it's an invasive question, but to me the idea of running a profitable business for several years and that still not being enough to have earned a decent life/business cushion is seriously demotivating for entrepreneurship effort.

Edit: sorry to hear about the closure too. Your service seems like a genuinely wonderful thing, and especially in a country like the U.S, with often grotesquely punitive attitudes towards people with criminal records.

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@acalzycalzy 1 month

Why do you think they are quitting after a few days on the job?

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@sowww 1 month

Never heard of it, but sounds dangerous helping out rapists and murderers and such.

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@internetuser103 1 month

I'm not American, so perhaps this is why I never heard of the service. However, it would be better if it was acquired rather than shut down. I mean, it seems like a just cause and people would suffer without it.

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@dwighttk 1 month

Why is 70MillionJobs repeatedly referred to as 70MR?

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@SpaceManNabs 1 month

sadness. Thanks for the efforts.

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@rkipol 1 month

This is sad, I hope you or someone else will start that again in another form.

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@spaniard89277 1 month

I'm not even from the US but props to you man. I know some words from random internet people don't fix the situation but to me you're an inspiration. Hopefully, some day, with some more money, wiser and with skills that I'm lacking, I can make a company to solve a real problem like you did.

It's sad that the amount of money floating around doesn't pour into a company like yours.

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@bpodgursky 1 month

> Now our workers were reticent to come back to work. And if they did accept a job, they’d often leave after only a few days.

If I'm reading this right, there's an immense amount of unemployment fraud suppressing ex-convict workforce re-entry.

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@bozhark 1 month

Might be worth trying to sell, rather than close the doors?

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@CodeWriter23 1 month

Dude. You did a good thing. I hope you get to make the sequel when the time is right.

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@Cverax 1 month

After lurking for years I created an account just to reply to this post and to say thank you. I’ve never gone to jail/prison but I know many who have and I’ve always wanted to figure out a way to help them gain employment and housing upon leaving prison. You did what I wanted to do & I love knowing that someone out there gave a damn and tried. I’m sure you’ll succeed in your future endeavors but once again, thank you for trying my friend.

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@peteforde 1 month

I'm genuinely sad to read this, even while I am so very impressed by the grace and integrity that you are demonstrating. I'm going to save this as an example of how to do hard things, right.

This is hard, but it's clear that the world has not heard the last of you.

Indeed, the world might not deserve you.

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@einpoklum 1 month

> companies made wholesale terminations of nearly all our people

The "employment at will" doctrine at work. Terrible.

I would attribute that to the weak US labor, and its failure to do away with this via country-wide/industry-wide labor agreements make this impossible, or appropriate legislation. Many (most?) countries don't have this doctrine.

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