Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – a leading global background check firm – has created an interactive Ban the Box Map to help employers better understand the current patchwork of Ban the Box laws in states, counties, and cities in America. The page is at

“Ban the Box” is a catch phrase for initiatives that seek to advance employment opportunities for people with prior criminal convictions by eliminating any inquiry into a candidate’s criminal history on the job application, specifically the check box that requires candidates to disclose their criminal history.

As of March 2018, more than 150 cities and counties as well as 31 states have Ban the Box laws that restrict employers from asking job applicants about their criminal history until later on in the hiring process. Along with the Ban the Box map, ESR also offers employers the following resources:

Employers having to deal with a myriad of overlapping local and statewide Ban the Box laws is a growing trend for 2018. However, having mixed local and state Ban the Box laws without giving employers incentives or protections from negligent hiring lawsuits may hurt ex-offenders more than help them.

“Originally, Ban the Box was concerned with the initial the application process but now many of these laws have morphed into Fair Chance legislation that imposes processes for how criminal information is utilized,” says ESR founder and CEO Attorney Lester Rosen, the author of ‘The Safe Hiring Manual.’

“In other words, since Ban the Box is often no longer limited to just the application process, a consistent statewide Ban the Box policy where employers are given some sort of immunity if they hire an ex-offender is likely the most effective means of giving ex-offenders a second chance,” explains Rosen.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) – the agency enforcing federal workplace discrimination laws – supported Ban the Box laws in its “Enforcement Guidance on the Consideration of Arrest and Conviction Records in Employment Decisions Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.”

“As a best practice” and “consistent with applicable laws,” the EEOC “recommends that employers not ask about convictions on job applications” and, if they do, to limit inquiries “to convictions for which exclusion would be job-related for the position in question and consistent with business necessity.”

ESR Ban the Box Resources Page

Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – a leading global background check firm – supports sensible Ban the Box laws. ESR offers employers a Ban the Box Resources Page with information and updates about Ban the Box legislation at

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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