Joining four other U.S. states – Hawaii, Illinois, Oregon, and Washington – prohibiting the use of credit information by employers, Maryland has enacted new legislation placing restrictions on so-called credit checks by employers that use the credit report or credit history of job applicants or employees for employment decisions. The law, known as the ‘Job Applicant Fairness Act,’ was signed by Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley in April of 2011 and will take effect on October 1, 2011. Continue reading
A newly released legislative report from the California Senate Office of Oversight and Outcomes found that residents of California – one of six U.S. states that do not regulate private in-home caregivers – may risk hiring private in-home caregivers who have criminal backgrounds and suggests that the elderly population in the state may suffer theft and abuse as a result of the lack of regulation for private in-home caregivers.
The report – ‘Caregiver Roulette: California Fails to Screen those who Care for the Elderly at Home’ – revealed that more than a quarter of caregivers accused or convicted of crimes had committed prior criminal offenses and warned that many private in-home caregiver agencies did not conduct proper background checks on potential caregivers. Continue reading
Joining a growing list of cities and states imposing restrictions on employer inquires into criminal record history, the city of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has passed legislation that restricts employer inquiries into, and use of, criminal record history information.
On April 13, 2011, Mayor Michael Nutter signed Philadelphia Bill 110111-A, the Fair Criminal Record Screening Standards Act, which prohibits employers from including criminal record history questions on an employment application and from making personnel decisions based on records of an arrest that did not result in a conviction. Continue reading
Adding to the debate over whether globalization negatively affects the U.S. economy, new data from the U.S. Commerce Department shows that multinational corporations in the United States – familiar big brand-name companies which employ nearly 20 percent of all American workers – reduced their domestic workforce by 2.9 million jobs during the last decade while at the same time increasing their overseas workforce by 2.4 million jobs, the Wall Street Journal reports in the article ‘Big U.S. Firms Shift Hiring Abroad.’ Continue reading
While only four U.S. states – Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, and most recently Illinois – currently have laws limiting or prohibiting credit checks by employers on job applicants and employees, lawmakers in many U.S. states are currently proposing legislation restricting the use of credit reports for employment screening background checks.
In all, lawmakers in 18 U.S. states are considering bills that limit the use of credit report data for employment screening. These states include: California, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Vermont. Continue reading
A recent article by two labor and employment attorneys published on the Association of Corporate Council (ACC) website – ‘Top Ten State Background Issues’ – summarizes key state background check issues that employers need to know about since there are an increasing number of state issues that must be considered by employers when conducting employment screening and drug testing on job applicants. Continue reading
According to a story that reflects a parent’s nightmare – ‘Mom says background checks are needed for college RAs’ – a mother in Tennessee wants a law that would require background checks on college resident assistants (RAs) after a University of Tennessee at (UT) Chattanooga student and former RA at the university was accused of placing surveillance cameras hidden in alarm clocks in the dorm rooms of her daughter and several other students. Police arrested the student – who was previously convicted on charges that included burglary, arson, harassment, and stalking – on more than a dozen charges. Continue reading
State lawmakers in Maryland have proposed legislation that would limit the ability of employers to run credit checks using credit reports and credit histories of employees and job applicants for employment purposes in response to complaints from job seekers in the state who said they were denied jobs after their would-be employers learned about their low credit scores, according to an article in The Baltimore Sun. Continue reading
In an effort to keep Human Resources (HR) leaders and professionals informed about the latest legislative, compliance, and regulatory issues affecting how they conduct day-to-day business in their workplaces – including employment screening and safe hiring – the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) will hold the 2011 SHRM Employment Law and Legislative Conference from Monday, March 14, 2011 to Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at the Hyatt Washington in Washington D.C.. For more information about the conference, visit: http://www.shrm.org/Conferences/EmploymentLawLegislativeConference/Pages/default.aspx. Continue reading
To avoid bad hiring decisions, employers have increasingly turned to pre-employment background screening as a risk management tool. However, no employment screening program can be conducted by employers without a full understanding of a number of laws including the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), discrimination and privacy laws, and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The challenge is even greater for California employers who must use caution when dealing with additional rules regulating employment screening. Continue reading