Tag Archives: discrimination

EEOC Background Check Lawsuit Dismissed by Court Based On Unreliable Expert Reports

In a Memorandum Opinion issued in the case of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) v. Freeman, Judge Roger Titus of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland dismissed a lawsuit brought by the EEOC alleging that corporate events service provider Freeman, Inc. “unlawfully relied upon credit and criminal background checks that caused a disparate impact against African-American, Hispanic, and male job applicants,” according to a blog on WorkplaceClassAction.com. The blog is available at http://www.workplaceclassaction.com/2013/08/court-dismisses-eeocs-background-check-lawsuit-based-on-its-reliance-on-laughable-and-unreliable-expert-report-filled-of-errors-and-analytical-fal/. Continue reading

Attorneys General from Nine States Send Letter to EEOC Expressing Concern about Background Check Ban

The Attorneys General from nine states – Alabama, Colorado, Georgia, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, South Carolina, Utah, and West Virginia – have sent a letter to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) expressing concern about two recent lawsuits filed by the EEOC against companies that use criminal background checks when hiring new employees. The signed letter dated July 24, 2013 is available at http://www.esrcheck.com/file/Atty-General-Criticism-of-EEOC_2013-7-24.pdf. Continue reading

FBI Background Checks for Employment Containing Inaccurate Information Can Cost Applicants Jobs

Employers that use Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) criminal databases to background check job applicants could be basing employment decisions on inaccurate information that can cost applicants job opportunities, according to an article in The Washington Post available at http://wapo.st/17cC0Kn. Continue reading

EEOC Guidance on Criminal Records Focuses on Employment Discrimination during Background Checks

In April 2012, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – the agency that enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination – voted to update the Enforcement Guidance on the Consideration of Arrest and Conviction Records in Employment Decisions Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The updated Guidance, which focuses on employment discrimination based on race and national origin, is available at http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/guidance/arrest_conviction.cfm. Continue reading

EEOC Chair Says Criminal Background Checks by Employers Not Banned

In a letter to the Wall Street Journal responding to the June 15, 2013 article ‘Banning Background Checks,’ Jacqueline A. Berrien, Chair of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), denied the article’s suggestion that the EEOC believes criminal background checks by employers are “racist” and that the agency wants to ban the practice. The letter to the Wall Street Journal from Chair Berrien is available at http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323893504578555722405188406.html. Continue reading

EEOC Sends Message to Employers that Criminal Records of Job Applicants Must Be Used Carefully

In the Wall Street Journal article ‘Employment Checks Fuel Race Complaints,’ Attorney Lester Rosen, Founder and CEO of background check company Employment Screening Resources® (ESR), says the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has been delivering the same message to employers since the 1980s: “Criminal records need to be used carefully, not with brute force, more as a surgical instrument.” The article, which catalogues the increased scrutiny of background checks by the EEOC, is available at http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323495604578539283518855020.html. Continue reading

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Files Lawsuits against Two Employers for Use of Criminal Background Checks

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has filed lawsuits against two employers alleging they violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act by implementing and utilizing a criminal background check policy that resulted in employees being fired or screened out for employment. A press release about the lawsuits – the first enforcement action against employers under the revised EEOC Guidance for using criminal records – is available at http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/6-11-13.cfm. Continue reading

Seattle City Council Passes Job Assistance Bill Prohibiting Automatic Exclusion of Applicants with Criminal Records

In a unanimous 9-0 vote, the Seattle City Council has passed a Job Assistance Bill to reduce criminal recidivism by providing job assistance to individuals with previous criminal records. Council Bill 117796 will prohibit public and private employers in Seattle from automatically excluding individuals with any arrest or conviction record from consideration for employment. A news release about the passing of the Job Assistance Bill – which will take effect November 1, 2013 if approved by Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn as expected – is available at http://www.seattle.gov/news/newsdetail_council.asp?ID=13721. Continue reading

Buffalo Council Bans the Box Asking Job Seekers about Criminal Convictions on Applications

The Common Council in Buffalo, New York has voted to “Ban the Box” and make it illegal for employers in the city to ask job seekers if they have been convicted of crimes on applications, according to a story on The Buffalo News website. The Ban the Box measure now heads to Mayor Byron W. Brown for his signature to become law. Continue reading

Best Practice Standards for Proper Use of Criminal Records in Hiring Addressed in New Report

A group of national civil and workers’ rights organizations has released a new report titled ‘Best Practice Standards: The Proper Use of Criminal Records in Hiring’ that addresses the use of criminal records of job applicants by employers during employment background checks. The organizations preparing the report include the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, the National H.I.R.E. Network, and the National Workrights Institute. Background screening industry consultants who helped to develop the Best Practice standards include Attorney Lester Rosen, Founder and CEO of Employment Screening Resources® (ESR), as well as Fred Giles and James Owens of CARCO Group, Inc. The full report is available at http://www.esrcheck.com/file/Best-Practice-Standards-Criminal-Records.pdf. Continue reading