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But we do all this in very ethical way and remove anything authorities tell us to remove.
Just because we do not want to become convicts but never the less many people due to some dumb reasons become ex convicts.
So, I thought why don’t we discuss about Things To Know Before Hiring Ex Convicts and determine should ex convicts be hired.
Why Hiring Ex Convicts Create Problems?
One of the hardest parts of managing a business is hiring the right people. Your employees become an extension of you and a representation of your business when dealing with customers.
This is just one reason why many employers prefer to hire people without criminal records.
The problem with avoiding people with criminal history is that qualified, suitable people with criminal records are excluded from the recruitment process.
For this reason, a reasonable quantity of ex-felons have begun hiring individuals with criminal records.
When a company is recruiting employees, applicants may have to fill an application form.
The application form is used to provide important information at a glance. A once popular question on application forms is ‘Have you been arrested before?’ or ‘Are you an ex-convict? ’.
While this may have been popular, it is now illegal to ask job applicants these questions on their application form. This is the case in over 25 states.
This legislation was passed in these states to stop the discrimination against ex-convicts trying to find employment.
Hence, the ‘ban-the-box’ law means that you cannot ask job applicants about their criminal history until they have been shortlisted and you wish to offer them a job.
Why Ban-The-Box Laws Helps in Hiring Ex Convicts
The ‘box’ on the job application form is important. However, a few issues caused more than 25 states to ban the use of the ‘box’ on job application forms. The first reason is that the use of the ‘box’ reduced the chances of ex-convicts finding a good job and having a better life.
The lack of good employment also meant a return to crime. A return to crime led to increased crime rates in the city and consequent return to prison. After release from prison, the cycle could repeat itself again.
Therefore, to eliminate this cycle, the box was banned. This ban allows ex-convicts to apply for jobs without being discriminated against because of their criminal history.
A second reason why the ban-the-box law is important is that ‘it stops discrimination against black men. Unexpectedly, the ban-the-box law may have aggravated the problem rather than solve it.
Due to the inability of companies to inquire about criminal records before the interview or job offer stage, some companies may not consider Latin American and Black men for jobs.
In states where the ban-the-box laws are in effect, black men within the ages of 25-34 with minimally skilled labour and minimal education have fewer employment opportunities.
This is because employers in these areas cannot ask about criminal history. But, they believe that people that fall into the aforementioned category are ex-convicts.
Significantly, while the ban-the-box laws were passed to help convicts get jobs, it also has adverse effects. Young black men who may never have been to jail or who have no criminal pasts are denied job opportunities.
Asking a potential employee about their criminal history
So, you may be wondering,
When can I ask my potential employee about their criminal history ?
You can ask about criminal history during the job interview. You can also ask when you are ready to make a conditional offer of appointment. It is important that you do not ask before this stage if you live in a ban-the-box state.
Can I withdraw an offer of appointment because of the applicant’s criminal history?
After you have shortlisted and interviewed the job applicants, you may then ask about their criminal history. What happens when you discover their offences and decide you no longer wish to offer them employment?
Can you withdraw the offer of appointment? Yes. However, this is dependent on a few circumstances. If the conviction or charges for indictment will make it difficult for the job applicant to fulfil the terms of his job, you can withdraw your job offer.
Furthermore, if the crimes the applicant was arrested for committing could endanger your business or customers, then you can refuse to hire such applicants.
An example of this is a sex offender or child abuse offender applying to work in a daycare or an elementary school. First of all, the conditions of the applicant’s release could make that impossible.
Furthermore, the safety of the children in these institutions is paramount. Hence, the job applicant can be rejected.
Similarly, an individual convicted of armed robbery may be unable to gain employment in a bank upon their reentry into society.
You should be careful before withdrawing a job offer or rejecting the application of someone with a criminal history. You may be violating the Civil Rights Act of 1964’s Title VII.
Things to know about the Civil Rights Act of 1964’s Title VII Before Hiring Ex Convicts
First of all, as an employer, you must have your potential employee’s consent before running a background check. Also, the source of the checks needs to be credible.
These checks are not allowed if they will put an already disadvantaged demographic at even more disadvantage.
Furthermore, some background checks will not determine how well the individual can do his/her job. You should be wary of using these checks as a basis for rejecting the job applicant.
Secondly, according to the Civil Rights Act of 1964’s Title VII, employers are not allowed to treat people with similar criminal offences or history differently.
This bias could be caused by age, sex, race, religion and colour. Notably, under the Fair Credit Reporting Act, a job applicant is allowed to correct wrong information and seek recourse if they were wrongly denied employment.
Thirdly, an arrest does not prove a job applicant was guilty of committing a crime. Hence, they should not be judged using their ‘possible offence’.
The nature of the arrest may not reflect their ability to fulfil their duties if employed. An arrest over loitering does not show if an individual will be a bad employee.
Should I Hire Ex Convicts?
If a potential employee has a criminal past, you may be wondering how to decide if you should still employ them. Below are a few tips to help you decide if you should hire a job applicant with a criminal past.
Hiring Ex Convicts Tip#1. Decide how the conviction affects the job
If a previous conviction shows that the applicant will be unable to do the job they are applying for, you can reject their application.
However, if the crime the applicant was convicted for committing Is unrelated to the job, you should consider employing the candidate.
An individual convicted for ‘possession of drugs with the intent to distribute’ should not be given work in a pharmacy or medical factory.
However, if the individual is qualified to work as a machinery operator, he/she should be given a fair chance.
Hiring Ex Convicts Tip#2. Consider if the applicant has repeated the offence
To properly judge the character of a potential employee who is an ex-convict, check for any repeated arrests or convictions.
An individual who has been arrested and convicted multiple times can be seen as a high-risk employee.
Furthermore, it shows a lack of regard for the law. An individual who has been arrested multiple times for armed robbery cannot be the best choice for an employer.
Hiring Ex Convicts Tip#3. Check how long it has been since the offence was committed
When deciding if you should hire an ex-convict, you should ask or check how long ago they committed the offence.
If the individual committed the offence 10 years ago and has had no further criminal history, they should be considered for the job they are applying for.
A recent offender can be seen as an untrustworthy as there is no evidence that they will not repeat their offences.
Hiring Ex Convicts Tip#4. Did the applicant lie about their criminal history?
If you run a background check on an applicant who has stated they have no criminal history and the checks show otherwise, you can reject such applications.
In this case, you are not discriminating against ex-convicts, rather you are acting on the fact that the job applicant is dishonest.
Hiring Ex Convicts Tip#5. Question the applicant
In the event that the job applicant has a conviction or criminal case that makes them unfit for the job in question, you should inform them of this.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission requires that you sit down with the applicant and allow them to explain themselves.
Here, the applicant will explain why he/she should be given the job despite their criminal history. By doing this, you will gain additional information that could affect your decision.
Also, if you have discovered that your potential employee lied about a previous conviction or criminal history, you should talk to them.
This will help you ascertain that your information is accurate and that you have not been misinformed.
Importantly, treat all people equally.
Do not pardon someone else based on their race, colour or religion.
Applicants who committed a similar offence should be treated equally and without prejudice.
The importance of legal counsel when Hiring Ex Convicts
If you have discovered that an applicant is no longer eligible because of their criminal history, be cautious.
You need to be careful before rejecting the applicant. Here are a few steps you should take:
1. Ensure that you check that state law
Before rejecting job applicants for their criminal history, check what the laws of the state say. Do they favour the applicant? Does your action violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964’s Title VII? If this is the case, reassess your reasons for rejecting the job applicant.
2. Ensure that you do not have current employees with similar charges
If any of your current or past employees were hired regardless of their criminal history, you could be sued for discriminatory employment practices.
If this is the case, consult with an employment attorney before rejecting the job applicant.
Significantly, if your decision was made by generalizing the actions of a group of people that share race, religion, sex or colour, you may become the defendant in a lawsuit.
3. Check out state licensing procedures when it applies
Some states require individuals to obtain a state license before they can do a particular job. If the individual who you are about hire or reject has the license from the state despite their criminal history, you should consult with your employment attorney.
This is because, if the state deemed the applicant worthy to have a work license, a prior conviction may not be an adequate reason to reject the individual’s job application. Rejecting the job applicant, in this case, could be seen as discrimination.
4. Hire an employment attorney
Attorneys are expensive especially for small businesses. For this reason, employers may prefer to do without the services of an attorney.
Having a legal adviser on the team can help you make the right decision on how to hire or reject potential employees with a criminal history.
An attorney can also advise you on how to make hiring decisions that will not lead to a lawsuit. In the long run, it is cheaper to have an employment attorney on staff than it is to pay for drawn-out litigation.
In conclusion, here is our recommendation for hiring individuals with a criminal record.
- Create job application forms without the ‘box’.
- Shortlist the qualified candidates.Interview the applicants and inquire about their criminal history.
- Gain their permission to run a background check (Use a credible company).
- Give the individuals with a criminal history a chance to explain themselves.
- Decide if you still want to employ the individual with a criminal history.
- If you wish to withdraw an offer of employment that has already been made, consult with your attorney.
- If you wish to hire ex convicts, consult with your attorney.