California Governor Jerry Brown Signs Ban the Box Bill to Help Ex-Offenders Seeking Government Jobs

In order to reduce unnecessary barriers to employment for the one in four adult Californians with arrest or conviction records, Governor Jerry Brown has signed into law Assembly Bill 218 (AB 218) to ‘Ban the Box’ and prohibit requesting criminal record information on initial employment applications for local and state government jobs. The text of AB 218 – which will take effect July 1, 2014 – is at http://openstates.org/ca/bills/20132014/AB218/.

Introduced by Assemblymember Roger Dickinson (D-Sacramento), AB 218 removes any inquiries into conviction histories on initial job applications – except for positions such as law enforcement and working with children, the elderly, or disabled, and other sensitive positions – and delays background checks until employers have determined that the qualifications of applicants meet the job requirements.

“I am proud that with this bill, the state and our cities and counties take an important step toward allowing people with a conviction history to compete fairly for employment without compromising safety and security on the job,” Assemblymember Dickinson said in a press release available at http://www.asmdc.org/members/a07/press-releases/governor-signs-dickinson-bill-to-increase-fairness-in-government-hiring.

According to a Resource Guide from the National Employment Law Project (NELP), California joins nine states and over 50 cities and counties across the United States that have adopted similar ‘Ban the Box’ legislation. The Resource Guide from NELP, a non-profit organization that focuses on issues affecting low-wage and unemployed workers, is at http://nelp.3cdn.net/495bf1d813cadb030d_qxm6b9zbt.pdf.

A study from NELP titled ‘65 Million Need Not Apply’ found that more than one in four adults in the United States had criminal records. The study estimated that 64.6 million people – representing 27.8 percent of the U.S. adult population – had a criminal record for either an arrest or a conviction on file with states. The study from NELP is at http://nelp.3cdn.net/e9231d3aee1d058c9e_55im6wopc.pdf.

The ‘Ban the Box’ movement is one of the ‘Top Ten Background Check Trends for 2013’ selected by Attorney Lester Rosen, Founder and CEO of Employment Screening Resources® (ESR), a nationwide background check company accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®). The Top Ten Trends are at http://www.esrcheck.com/Top-Ten-Background-Check-Trends-for-2013.php.

Sources:

http://openstates.org/ca/bills/20132014/AB218/

http://www.asmdc.org/members/a07/press-releases/governor-signs-dickinson-bill-to-increase-fairness-in-government-hiring

http://nelp.3cdn.net/495bf1d813cadb030d_qxm6b9zbt.pdf

http://nelp.3cdn.net/e9231d3aee1d058c9e_55im6wopc.pdf

About Employment Screening Resources® (ESR):

Founded by safe hiring expert Attorney Lester Rosen in 1997, Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – ‘The Background Check Authority®’– provides accurate and actionable information that empowers employers to make informed hiring decisions for the benefit of their organizations, employees, and the public. Founder and CEO Rosen literally wrote the book on background checks with ‘The Safe Hiring Manual’ and ESR is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®), a distinction held by a small percent of screening firms. Employers choosing ESR know they have selected an agency meeting the highest industry standards. For more information about ESR, visit http://www.ESRcheck.com or call Toll Free 888.999.4474.

About ESR News:  The Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) News blog – ESR News – provides employment screening information for employers, recruiters, and jobseekers on a variety of topics including credit reports, criminal records, data privacy, discrimination, E-Verify, jobs reports, legal updates, negligent hiring, workplace violence, and use of search engines and social network sites for background checks. For more information about ESR News or to send comments or questions, please email ESR News Editor Thomas Ahearn at tahearn@esrcheck.com. To subscribe to the ESR News Blog Feed, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/wordpress/feed/. To subscribe to the complimentary ESRcheck Report monthly newsletter, please visit http://www.esrcheck.com/Newsletter/.