Los Angeles to Ban the Box on Job Applications for Public and Private Employers

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Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

The Los Angeles City Council has voted to pass a ‘Fair Chance Initiative’ ordinance to “Ban the Box” from job applications and prevent public and private employers from asking applicants about criminal records while delaying background checks until conditional job offers, according to a blog on the website of Councilman Curren D. Price (District 9). The law will take effect January 22, 2017. (UPDATE: Mayor Garcetti signs historic Fair Chance Initiative into law.)

Councilman Price stated in the blog entitled ‘Reducing Barriers to Employment for the Formerly Incarcerated’: I’m proud to say the City’s version of “ban the box” is one of the most progressive in the nation. Not only does Los Angeles’ Fair Chance Policy apply to contractors doing business with the City, but it also applies to private employers with 10 or more employees.

Councilman Price – who proposed the Ban the Box Ordinance – also stated: I want to thank my City Council colleagues for supporting this very important legislation that I introduced in 2014 and doing what is ethically and morally right. This week’s 13-1 vote, demonstrates strong support for the policy. We expect the new law to go into effect January 2017.

The Ban the Box movement is rapidly spreading across the United States. According to the National Employment Law Project (NELP), 24 states and over 150 cities and counties have Ban the Box laws to help remove barriers to employment for qualified workers with criminal records so they can be judged first on their knowledge, skills, abilities, and qualifications to do the job.

In August 2016, ESR News reported that the White House announced a new round of signers of the Obama administration’s Fair Chance Business Pledge to help job candidates with criminal histories to return to the workforce. U.S. employers who have pledged to Ban the Box include Coca-Cola, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, PepsiCo, Starbucks, Uber, and Walmart.

Ban the Box Information Page from ESR

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a global provider of background checks – offers employers a Ban the Box Information Page with breaking news and legal updates about Ban the Box states, Ban the Box cities and counties, and Ban the Box resources. The ESR Ban the Box Information Page is available at www.esrcheck.com/Ban-the-Box/.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

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