Chicago, IL

CTA's 'Second Chance' Program Gives Hope To Residents Seeking Employment

Lashaunta Moore

The program provides job skills and opportunities to city residents re-entering the workforce.

Finding a job after facing trials and tribulations can be complex, but the Chicago Transit Authority found a way to provide the resources needed to return.

CTA's Second Chance program provides jobs to returning citizens, victims of abuse, and others who face barriers to employment. It also offers a variety of training, education, mentoring, and networking opportunities. Since its start in 2011, more than 1,600 Chicagoans have participated in the program, gaining vital work experience.

Second Chance has been credited for helping many residents change their lives and is one of the most extensive re-entry programs in the nation. Here's how to apply, who's eligible, and how much the program pay.

How can I apply?

There are two ways. You can apply through CTA Direct hiring events or CTA Social Service Agency Partners.

To view the list and addresses of the Social Service Agency Partners visit Transit Chicago.

Who is eligible?

  • Job seekers interested in participating must:
    • Reside within the City of Chicago
    • Be 18 years or older
    • Participate in weeks of Job Readiness Training and obtain a certificate of completion (If referred to by one of their agencies)
  • Second Chance applicants that are referred are required to be released from the following:
    • Drug/alcohol treatment program
    • Work release center

When does it start, and how long is the program?

CTA website states that they accept participants on a rolling basis, and the program may last for a year, based on job performance.

Does the program pay? What about transportation?

Participants are paid $15.40 per hour and may work up to 40 hours per week. Checks are issued bi-weekly, and transportation is free for the duration of the program on CTA and Pace buses and trains.

Visit Transit Chicago for more information or call the CTA Second Chance hotline at 312-681-2293

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