Tag Archives: Title VII

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

Kaplan Higher Learning Wins Summary Judgment in Nationwide Hiring Discrimination Lawsuit Filed by EEOC

Ending a two year dispute, Kaplan Higher Learning Education Corp. has won a summary judgment in a nationwide hiring discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) over Kaplan’s use of credit checks as part of its hiring process that the EEOC alleged violated Title VII due to an unlawful “disparate impact” on Black applicants. The full summary judgment in the case of EEOC vs. Kaplan is available at http://www.esrcheck.com/file/EEOCvsKaplan_SummaryJudgment.pdf. Continue reading

Safe Hiring Expert Submits Public Comments to US Commission on Civil Rights about Criminal Background Checks

A letter of public comment was recently submitted by Attorney and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, Founder and CEO of Employment Screening Resources (ESR), to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (USCCR). The comments by Rosen supplemented views stated by the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS) at a December 7, 2012 briefing on the impact of criminal background checks and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s (EEOC) conviction records policy on employment of black and Hispanic workers. To read the entire letter, visit http://www.esrcheck.com/Lester-Rosen-Public-Comments-to-USCCR.php. Continue reading

EEOC Alleges Criminal Background Check Policy of Discount Retailer Violates Civil Rights Act of 1964

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – the agency that enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination – has alleged that the criminal background check policy of Dollar General Corp., one of the largest discount retailers in the U.S. with over 10,000 stores in 40 states, has a ‘disparate impact’ on African-American job candidates and employees and violates of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. A full report on the story, a prime example of how criminal background checks by employers are coming under greater scrutiny by the EEOC, is available on the Nashville Business Journal website at: http://www.bizjournals.com/nashville/news/2012/09/10/dollar-generals-use-of-criminal.html. Continue reading

Employment Background Screening and New EEOC Guidance on Criminal Records Discussed in Webinar on September 6

Attorney and safe hiring expert Lester Rosen, Founder and CEO of San Francisco, CA-area background check firm Employment Screening Resources (ESR), will be one of three panelists participating in an encore presentation of a 90 minute CLE webinar/teleconference from Strafford titled ‘Pre-Employment Background Screening After EEOC’s New Guidance: Structuring Policies to Comply With Title VII, Fair Credit Reporting Act, and State Laws’ on Thursday, September 6, 2012 from 1:00 PM to 2:30 PM EDT (10:00 AM to 11:30 AM PDT). For more information, visit: http://www.straffordpub.com/products/pre-employment-background-screening-after-eeocs-new-guidance-2012-09-06. Continue reading

EEOC Must Testify On Own Use of Criminal Background Checks and Credit Histories for Employment Screening

A federal district Court in Maryland has ruled that an employer sued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) for alleged discriminatory use of criminal background checks and credit histories in hiring may compel the EEOC the testify regarding the agency’s own use of criminal records and credit information for employment screening. The ruling EEOC v. Freeman, D. Md., No. 09-2573, 8/14/12 is available here: http://op.bna.com/dlrcases.nsf/id/kmgn-8x7jwz/$File/freemanprotect.pdf. Continue reading

House Passes Appropriations Bill that would Block Enforcement of New EEOC Guidance on Criminal Background Checks

The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed an appropriations bill (H.R. 5326) that provides funding for several agencies including the allocation of $367 million the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) but also includes amendments that would block implementation and enforcement of several programs including the new EEOC guidance on the ‘Consideration of Arrest and Conviction Records in Employment Decisions Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964’ for employers using criminal background checks. The full text of H.R. 5326 is available at: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/hr5326/text. Continue reading

EEOC Issues Updated Guidance on Use of Arrest and Conviction Records by Employers

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency that enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination, today voted 4-1 to approve updated 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 EEOC Guidance is available at http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/guidance/arrest_conviction.cfm. Questions and Answers (Q & As) about the EEOC’s Enforcement Guidance are at http://www.eeoc.gov/laws/guidance/qa_arrest_conviction.cfm. Continue reading