Does WMATA Hire Felons?

The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority provides public transportation services throughout the capital area. Utilizing bus and train routed to get its riders to where they need to go. Running on average 2.3 million trips in a year it is one of the most used transportation services in the country.

Having a felony can be difficult on a person’s life from the social, personal and professional level. Finding and maintaining employment can be challenging and difficult at time but there are ways that you can acquire gainful employment.


WMATA provides public transportation throughout the capital area and can be a good fast way of getting to work or wherever you need to go. Many people use the service daily and with reasonable rates for traveling, it can be more cost effective than using personal transportation every day for work.

WMATA was founded by the interstate compact in 1967 to create a public service of transportation for the citizens of the area. Starting with rail systems in 1969, it has since upgraded to bus services and para-transit services as well.

Boasting a 2.3 million trips a year service to the area they also operate the 3rd largest heavy rail system in the United States. Outdating all their old rail cars and equipment, they have integrated a new line of buses and rails enabling them to provide a 9 out of 10 on time arrival statistic.

Working at WMATA can be very rewarding and they have many positions that you could work in. Safety is a top priority working at the WMATA for both the public and yourself. There will likely be an extensive training period in which to learn your job requirements.

Benefits provided are broad making this a great place to work. WMATA provides benefits such as Health benefits, dental benefits, vision benefits and vacation time. Another neat perk to working here is complimentary transportation on their buses and trains.

People like working here because of the benefits. The benefits are very good, and they offer all kinds of services that you can utilize as an employee. Aside from the benefits people seem to find working here fun and rewarding.

Does WMATA Hire Felons?

From what can be found by research there is a grey area here. In short, yes, they will hire felons however because they have sworn in positions such as the metro police department, you will not qualify for that position. Aside from all sworn in positions offered, you may qualify for other positions depending on what your felony is for and how long it has been since you offended.

According to the company’s website, the background check they will run will come back either hirable or non-hirable. From what can be gathered a non-hirable result does not mean you won’t get hired; it simply means that you do not qualify for certain positions such as law enforcement.

Does WMATA Run Background Checks?

According to their careers page they do in fact run a background check. The scope of the background check looks for criminal history and the date in which the offense took place. Many employers will hire a felon, however.

WMATA looks back ten years at your criminal history in accordance with federal law. WMATA however, will not be looking at your arrests and indictments or complaints that have not been resolved without a conviction.

Careers at WMATA

Working at WMATA can be rewarding with the benefits packages that it offers and an entry level position here can be a great steppingstone for your career. There is always room to grow here since they typically promote from within. There are various entry level positions that you can do, and they are all rewarding in their own way.

Digital Video Evidence Technician

Security is important at WMATA. They have video surveillance throughout their facilities to provide safety for customers and employees. Duties for this position range from digital enhancing, working with law enforcement, computer integration and a knowledge of computers and security technology will help you immensely.

Fire Equipment Technician

Throughout their facilities WMATA has fire stations and fire equipment at the ready in case of an emergency. It is important that this equipment be cleaned and inspected on a regular basis. Duties will include regular maintenance on various equipment ranging from fire suppression to medical stabilizing equipment.

Business Intelligence Analyst

Keeping track of customer flow and all the statistical data of the transit system is vital to the system’s success. In this position you will be responsible for accurately recoding and entering statistics on a regular basis to track transit use.

Metrobus Operator CDL Trainee

If you have a CDL and a clean driving record you may consider applying to drive one of the buses. This position is very schedule driven and you will be required to make stop by stop pickups on a tight schedule.

Police Communications Specialist

This position does not require you to be sworn in and can be a great entry level position. Working as a team and having very strong communication skill is a must. Knowledge of computer interface and telephone skills are also required. In this position your main responsibility will be the role of a dispatcher. Making sure that the line of communication is open for law enforcement to perform their jobs efficiently.

Application Process at WMATA

Applying is very handy and easy at WMATA. Head over to their careers page and have a look at what is available. You can click on more than one position and apply for them at once which is very handy and it will save you time as well.

Applying at WMATA can be competitive and difficult but there are things that you can do as a felon to increase your chances of being hired. The number one thing to remember is to not lie. The background check goes back 10 years meaning that they can see detailed information about your criminal history up to ten years ago. What you should keep in mind is that they will be able to see your felony for the rest of your life. If your felony is 11 years old, they will still see the felony just not what it is for.

If the felony is brought up in an interview situation just be honest. Likely they are not really worried about the felony depending on what the felony is. WMATA emphasizes safety in everything that they do and if you have a non-violent felony it will likely not affect your job performance.

Emphasizing safety is of the utmost importance working here, so simply put you need to take the time to be safe. Customer service skills are always helpful since you are dealing with the public as they are in a rush to get to where they are going.

Your resume should be tailored to make them look twice at it. Safety, customer service, and employment history. Highlight skills in your resume that reflect these traits since that is what they are looking for.

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