Attorney and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, CEO of nationwide background check company Employment Screening Resources (ESR), has submitted a letter for public comment to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – the Government agency that enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination – after the Commission recently held a public meeting on July 26, 2011 that examined the use by employers of arrest and conviction records for criminal background checks to determine if the practice was an unfair and discriminatory hiring barrier to jobseeking ex-offenders. The Commission had held open the July 26 meeting record for 15 days and invited members of the public to submit written comments on any issue or matters discussed at the meeting. The letter in its entirety is available at http://www.esrcheck.com/EEOC-and-the-Use-of-Criminal-Records-for-Employment.php. Continue reading
With a bill (H.R. 2501) already introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives and support in Congress building to end discrimination against unemployed jobseekers, Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Connecticut), Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York), and Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) have sponsored the ‘Fair Employment Opportunity Act of 2011’ (S. 1471) that would bar employers and employment agencies from screening out or excluding job applicants solely because they are out of work, according to a press release from the National Employment Law Project (NELP), a national advocacy organization for employment rights of lower-wage and unemployed workers. Continue reading
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – the agency of the United States Government that enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination – held a meeting Tuesday, July 26, 2011 focusing on the use of criminal records by employers for employment screening background checks, according to the EEOC press release ‘Striking the Balance Between Workplace Fairness and Workplace Safety.’ At the meeting, the Commission was told by experts that employers refusing to hire people with arrest and conviction records even years after they have completed their sentences may cause recidivism and higher social services costs, but also that businesses face confusing and conflicting laws when using sometimes unreliable arrest and conviction records in making employment decisions. Continue reading
The City and County of San Francisco Human Rights Commission (HRC) will host a public forum on the use of criminal history by employers for employment screening on Monday, July 25, 2011 to consider enacting limitations on the use of criminal records by making job applicants with criminal pasts – excluding sex offenders and those convicted of violent crimes – a “protected” class when looking for work, according to a July 2011 HRC memo. For more information about the forum, which will take place from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. PT in Room 400 of San Francisco City Hall, visit the SF HRC website at http://www.sfgov.org/sfhumanrights.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – the agency of the United States Government that enforces the federal employment discrimination laws – will hold a meeting focusing on the use of criminal records for employment screening background checks on Tuesday, July 26, in Washington, D.C., according to the EEOC website.
The NAPBS, a non-profit trade association representing the interests of companies offering employment background screening, believes the July 26th meeting “could be a critical step in the Commission’s adoption of policies that could significantly impact how employers use criminal background checks for employment purposes.”
In an effort to bar discrimination against unemployed job seekers in New York state, Senate Bill 5316 (SB 5316) – proposed by Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District- D/WF/I) – would make the unemployed a “protected class” in New York and make it illegal for employers to deny out-of-work applicants an interview or position solely because they are jobless. In addition, SB 5316 would prohibit employers from posting job advertisements that discourage the unemployed from applying to vacant positions, according to a press release on the Senator’s website. Continue reading
Since a 2010 survey released by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) – ‘Background Checking: Conducting Credit Background Checks’ – found that 13 percent of the companies surveyed checked the credit reports of all job candidates while 47 percent checked the credit reports of some job candidates, many job seekers looking for work are wondering if their bad credit will affect the outcome of their job search. These jobs seekers need to know that there are limits to what employers can see in employment-related credit checks and how they can use that credit information, according to the article ‘Can Bad Credit Ruin Your Job Search?’ by Susan Johnston on Bankrate.com. Continue reading
The number of Americans job seekers with criminal histories is larger than ever before and includes nearly 65 million people – over one in four U.S. adults – due to increased enforcement for nonviolent crimes like drug offenses and the release of more than 700,000 people from prisons each year, according to criminal justice experts quoted in a recent New York Times article ‘Internet Lets a Criminal Past Catch Up Quicker.’ As a result, U.S. employers will need to ensure compliance with federal, state, and even city guidelines concerning the use of criminal records when performing employment screening background checks. Continue reading
In a decision ending over three years of litigation, a federal court in Michigan recently sanctioned the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – the agency of the U.S. Government that enforces the federal employment discrimination laws – and ordered the EEOC to pay $751,942.48 for attorneys fees, expert fees, and court costs to a private employer, PeopleMark, Inc., a staffing company headquartered in Kentucky. Continue reading
Attorney and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, President of San Francisco, California-area background check provider Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will present an educational session – ‘The Top Ten Trends for Background Checks in 2011 – What Every Employer Needs to Know’ – at the 2011 Los Angeles HR Star Conference held at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California on March 30, 2011. The session will review the top trends, best practices, and legal developments for background checks. Continue reading