Many people find out that after a criminal conviction, employment is almost impossible. The article below details the pain!
“There are a lot of people who have done one stupid thing and been caught for it when they are youth, and they have this economic death sentence around their neck.”
—Ed Monahan, public defender in Kentucky
The implications of a criminal record vary from state to state, with layers of penalties imposed at the federal and state levels. A criminal record can affect housing, employment and educational opportunities. People convicted of drug crimes or sex offenses can be barred from public housing or access to Section 8 housing vouchers. Private landlords can refuse to rent to people with a criminal record, and employers are under no obligation to hire them. In many states, people with felony convictions have limited access to licenses for everything from hunting to plumbing to selling theater tickets.
Please read the complete article “Punished for Life”
Here is a good recap from Lexology:
CIR has sent updated forms this year. If you need copies, please let us know.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which now has primary rulemaking responsibility for the Fair Credit Reporting Act, has released new regulations requiring employers to update certain FCRA-mandated forms by January 1. The changes consist primarily of substituting the CFPB for the Federal Trade Commission as the point of contact for questions regarding consumers’ rights under the FCRA.
You can find the forms:
Before January 1, 2013, employers should substitute the new FCRA Summary of Rights for the one currently being used when they: (1) enclose the form with the “pre-adverse action” notice; and (2) provide the form with required disclosures for investigative consumer reports. Because of the intensive focus on background check programs by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)15 and the wave of new state laws (e.g., the new laws in Vermont16 and Indiana17), it is also an opportune time for employers to consider thoroughly assessing their credit and criminal record-based screening policies and procedures for opportunities to fortify compliance with all applicable laws.
The new regulations require the adoption of modified versions of the following three forms, the first of which is most significant for employers:
- “A Summary of Your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act.” If an employer relies on information in a consumer report or an investigative consumer report to make an adverse decision about a prospective or current employee, the employer must follow strict guidelines in notifying the individual of the decision. The employer must provide the individual with a copy of the consumer report and written information describing the individual’s rights under the FCRA, known as the General Summary of Consumer Rights. This form must be provided to the subject of a consumer report in two scenarios:
- Along with a “pre-adverse action” notice, and
- Along with disclosure notices when obtaining any “investigative consumer report.”
It is advisable for employers to include this form with “adverse action” notices, as well. Prior to January 1, 2013, employers should switch over to the new FCRA Summary of Rights when providing pre-adverse and adverse action letters in lieu of the FTC form currently in use. The newly updated form is available at http://www.ecfr.gov/graphics/pdfs/er21de11.019.pdf .
Additionally, the following two forms have also been modified:
- “Notice to Users of Consumer Reports: Obligations of Users Under the FCRA.” This is a form that consumer reporting agencies must provide to those who use their services, such as employers.
- “Notice to Furnishers of Information: Obligations of Furnishers Under the FCRA.” The FCRA requires consumer reporting agencies to provide this notice to providers of information in certain situations, such as re-investigations triggered by a prospective employee’s dispute of the information.
Why Conduct a Background Check?
While there may be rigorous requirements mandating how to conduct a criminal background check rather than whether to conduct one, many employers find it prudent to undertake them. Taking such appropriate initial steps in screening prospective employees can go a long way toward 1) verifying that employees are qualified and do not have a propensity to cause harm, thereby mitigating risks of negligent hiring claims; and 2) minimizing potential liability. However, employers should take action now in adopting the new forms required by the CFPB to ensure compliance prior to the January 1, 2013, deadline. ” (from Lexology-Nexsen Pruet)
Sesame Street has a toolkit to help families explain and deal with the incarceration of parents. It is sad thing but a reality when more Americans are incarcerated than any other country in the world. Read this New York Times article for greater detail with the rate of incarceration in the USA-”US Prison Population Dwarfs that of other Nations“.
Here is the link to activities and storybooks to help the children. Little Children-Big Challenges-Incarceration
Only 6 states outlaw employers ability to look at an applicant’s facebook page. California and Illinois have joined the ranks of Michigan, New Jersey, Maryland, and Delaware in passing state laws against the practice.
To read the full article, click here
Colorado joined eight other states-California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Oregon, Vermont and Washington-in restricting the use of credit history information for employment purposes.
From the Colorado Springs Gazette- http://gazette.com/money-the-law-bill-limits-employers-use-of-credit-reports/article/154017
Among the requirements for receiving Federal funding under the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA), States must preserve the confidentiality of all child abuse and neglect reports and records to protect the privacy rights of the child and of the child’s parents or guardians except in certain limited circumstances.2 All jurisdictions have confidentiality provisions to protect abuse and neglect records from public scrutiny. Confidentiality provisions mandate that such records are confidential, and many include specific mechanisms for protecting them from public view.
Persons or Entities Allowed Access to Records
Most jurisdictions permit certain persons access to registry and department records. In general, these people have a direct interest in a case, in the child’s welfare, or in providing protective or treatment services. Many statutes specifically describe who may access the records and under what circumstances. Typically, persons entitled to access are physicians; researchers; police; judges and other court personnel; the person who is the subject of a report; a person who was an alleged child victim; and the parent, guardian, or guardian ad litem of an alleged victim who is a minor.
In approximately 18 States and Puerto Rico, the person or agency that made the initial report of suspected abuse or neglect may be provided with a summary of the outcome of the investigation.3 In approximately 19 States and Guam, a prospective foster or adoptive parent is provided with information from the records in order to help the parent in meeting the needs of the child.4 In 25 States and the District of Columbia, public agencies in other States are permitted access to information related to their child protection duties.5
When Public Disclosure of Records Is Allowed
Under most circumstances, information from child abuse and neglect records may not be disclosed to the public. In approximately 27 States and the District of Columbia, however, some disclosure of information is allowed in cases in which abuse or neglect of the child has resulted in a fatality or near fatality.6 In three States, the alleged perpetrator of the abuse must be criminally charged with causing the fatality or near fatality before information may be disclosed. (North Carolina)7 Georgia and South Carolina require public disclosure of information when a child in State custody has died.
Approximately 13 States allow disclosure of information for the purpose of clarifying or correcting the record when information has already been made public through another source, such as disclosure by the subject of the report, a law enforcement agency, or the court.8 In five States, public disclosure is allowed when a suspected perpetrator of abuse or neglect has been arrested or criminally charged.9
Use of Records for Employment Screening
Central registry and department records are used increasingly to screen adults for various employment or volunteer positions. Approximately 29 States and the District of Columbia allow or require a check of central registry or department records for individuals applying to be child care or youth care providers.10 Information is made available to employers in the child care business, schools, or health-care industry. However, it is generally limited to whether there are substantiated or indicated reports of child maltreatment for potential employees or volunteers who will have significant contact with children.
Four States allow parents to check the records of child abuse and neglect for a provider of child care to help them determine whether to hire that provider to care for their child.11 In 21 States and the District of Columbia, a person or agency conducting an investigation of a prospective foster or adoptive parent may access the records.12
To access the statutes for a specific State or territory, visit the State Statutes Search.
1 The records referred to are maintained by State child protection agencies and are not the same as those accessed during a criminal history records check. Criminal histories are records of convictions maintained by the criminal justice system. back
2 42 U.S.C.A. §5106a(b)(2)(A)(viii)-(x) (LexisNexis 2010). back
3 The word approximately is used to stress the fact that States frequently amend their laws. This information is current through June 2010. The States that provide information to reporters of maltreatment include California, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. back
4 Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, and Wisconsin. back
5 Alabama, Alaska, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, and Wisconsin. back
6 Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, West Virginia, and Wisconsin allow disclosure when there has been a fatality or near fatality. A ‘near fatality’ is usually defined as a serious injury that places the child in critical condition. back
7 Minnesota, North Carolina, and Oklahoma. back
8 Arizona, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nebraska, New York, South Carolina, and Wisconsin. back
9 Colorado, Illinois, Maine, Nebraska, and New York. back
10 Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wyoming. back
11 Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, and New Jersey. back
12 Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, and Wisconsin. back
This publication is a product of the State Statutes Series prepared by Child Welfare Information Gateway. While every attempt has been made to be as complete as possible, additional information on these topics may be in other sections of a State’s code as well as agency regulations, case law, and informal practices and procedures.
This material may be freely reproduced and distributed. However, when doing so, please credit Child Welfare Information Gateway.
Although it is difficult for the public to access these “public protection registry”, entry on these registries can be devastating to the individual. According to www.childwelfare.gov, a listing on these registries can be expunged in certain circumstances. Below are the requirements by state:
Current Through June 2011
Review and Expunction of Central Registries and Reporting Records
Electronic copies of this publication may be downloaded at http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/laws_policies/statutes/registry.cfm
To find statute information for a particular State, go to http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/laws_policies/search/index.cfm
To find information on all the States and territories, order a copy of the full‑length PDF by calling 800.394.3366 or download it at http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/laws_policies/statutes/registry.pdf
Records of child abuse and neglect reports are maintained by State child protection or social services agencies to aid in the investigation, treatment, and prevention of child abuse cases and to provide statistical information for staffing and funding purposes. In many States, these records and the results of investigations are maintained in databases, often known as central registries. Following an investigation, States classify child abuse records in a variety of ways, depending on the State’s statutory language. The classification ‘unsubstantiated’ often is ascribed to situations in which investigators have been unable to confirm the occurrence of abuse or neglect. Other terms for unsubstantiated can include ‘unfounded,’ ‘not indicated,’ or ‘unconfirmed.’ The classification ‘substantiated’ often is given to a report when a determination has been made that abuse or neglect likely did occur. Other terms for substantiated include ‘founded,’ ‘indicated,’ or ‘confirmed.’ Several States maintain all investigated reports of abuse and neglect in their central registries, while other States maintain only substantiated reports. Many States use the records that are maintained in central registries for background checks for persons seeking employment to work with children and for prospective foster and adoptive parents. Therefore, several due process and protection issues arise when a State maintains a central registry that identifies individuals accused of and found to have committed child abuse or neglect. In some cases, persons whose names are listed as alleged perpetrators in a central registry have asserted that the listing of their name in the registry deprives them of a constitutionally protected interest without due process of law.
Approximately 28 States, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, and Puerto Rico provide an individual the right to request an administrative hearing to contest the findings of an investigation of a report and to have an inaccurate report expunged or deleted from the registry.1 In Louisiana, New Hampshire, and North Carolina, a person who wishes to challenge a report must petition the court for a hearing. In Delaware, an individual who has successfully completed a service plan may petition the court to have his or her name removed from the central registry. In Wyoming, any person who has been named in a substantiated report of child abuse or neglect has the right to submit to the registry a statement concerning the incident.
Right of the Reported Person to Review and Challenge Records
1 The word approximately is used to stress the fact that States frequently amend their laws. This information is current through June 2011. The States that provide for administrative review include Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
When Records Must Be Expunged
The terms ‘expunction’ or ‘expungement’ refer to the procedures used by States to maintain and update their central registries and record keeping by removing old or inaccurate records. Under the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA), in order to receive a Federal grant, States must submit plans that include provisions and procedures for the prompt expunction of records of unsubstantiated or false cases if the records are accessible to the general public or are used for purposes of employment or other background checks.2 CAPTA does, however, allow State child protective services agencies to retain information on unsubstantiated reports in their casework files to assist in future risk and safety assessment.
Approximately 40 States, the District of Columbia, American Samoa, and Guam have provisions in statute for the expunction of certain child abuse and neglect reports.4 Statutes vary as to expunction standards and procedures. For example, the time specified for the expunction of unfounded or undetermined reports generally ranges from immediately upon determination to 10 years.5 A few States, however, do not permit unfounded reports to be placed on the registry at all. Substantiated reports are usually retained longer, typically at least until the child victim has reached adulthood.
2 42 U.S.C.A. § 5101 et. seq. (2010).
3 42 U.S.C.A. § 5106a(b)(2)(B)(xii) (2010).
Ten States (Alaska, Idaho, Kansas, New Mexico, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin) and the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands do not have provisions in statute for the expunction of child abuse and neglect records. For more information, see Chapter 4, National Study of Child Protective Services Systems and Reform Efforts: Review of State CPS Policy (2003), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, and Administration for Children and Families, Administration on Children, Youth and Families, Children’s Bureau: http://aspe.hhs.gov/hsp/CPS-status03/state-policy03/index.htm
This publication is a product of the State Statutes Series prepared by Child Welfare Information Gateway. While every attempt has been made to be complete, additional information on these topics may be in other sections of a State’s code as well as agency regulations, case law, and informal practices and procedures. (Child Welfare Information Gateway. (2011). Review and expunction of central registries and reporting records.
Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human
Services, Children’s Bureau.
Review and Expunction of Central Registries and Reporting Records http://www.childwelfare.gov. This material may be freely reproduced and distributed. However, when doing so, please credit Child Welfare Information Gateway. Available online at http://www.childwelfare.gov/systemwide/laws_policies/statutes/registry.cfm
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Administration for Children and Families
Administration on Children, Youth and Families
Child Welfare Information Gateway
1250 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, DC 20024
The use of credit reports to make employment decisions is becoming RISKY. Experts are concluding that credit reports should be banned for the use of Screening applicants, job promotion, etc except in certain circumstances. While some experts state that credit reports reflect the risk of employee theft, studies have not found that to be true. Many experts question how a credit report will tell an employer how the applicant will perform in the warehouse or the tendency towards tardiness or absences. “There is apparently little scientific research showing a clear link between someone’s personal consumer behavior and their performance on the job.” (http://www.staffingtalk.com/should-pre-employment-credit-checks-be-banned/)
Suzanne Lucas spent 10 years in corporate HR, and founded the Carnival of HR, a bi-weekly gathering of HR blogs. Here are her suggestions for good laws on pre-employment credit checks: (same link as above)
- Credit checks should be made after an offer has been made, not before.
- Require companies to have written policies on how credit histories will be used.
- Require companies to tell candidates up front if a credit check will be performed.
- Require multiple years to be taken into consideration.
- Let companies decide when credit checks are necessary, not lawmakers.
Employers consider the use of credit reports as a decision factor to be “one of the least important”. A 2010 SHRM report shows that employers have decreased the use of credit reports in employment decisions. In 2004, 19% of employers always conducted credit reports, while in 2010, it was down to 13%. Most employers do not request a credit report unless a “job offer” has been made. Two-thirds of the employers allow a candidate to “explain” poor credit report, before a decision to hire is made.
The following reasons for employment credit reports: (http://www.shrm.org/research/surveyfindings/articles/documents/ccflier_final.pdf)
- Positions with Fiduciary responsibility (handling cash, banking, accounting, compliance, and technology (91%)
- Senior Executive Positions (46%)
- Positions with access to highly confidential information (HR, medical, etc)(34%)
- Positions for which state law requires a background check (day care, medical practitioners (11%)
- Positions with security responsibility (9%)
- Positions involving national defense or homeland security (8%)
- Safety-sensitive positions (heavy equipment operators, transportation) (5%)
- Positions with vulnerable public (children, elderly, disabled) (3%)
- Positions in health care or access to drugs (3%)
Companies that use credit reports as a “condition” of employment might want to reconsider the policy. Employers will lose valuable applicants/employees if they use credit reports without a policy of necessity. Due to the economy, many potential employees have “bad credit” due to the recession. No employment, limited employment, and the corresponding foreclosures, medical bills, etc. are today’s cause of bad credit. Is good credit more important that the ability to perform the job? You may find yourself hiring candidates with great credit, “but NO EXPERIENCE.”
According to US Labor Department, NC under reports the number of work place deaths and injuries. In 2010, NC reported 35 deaths, while the US Department of Labor counted 148.
“A total of 744 people died on the job in NC in the five year period from 2007-2011. The most common cause of fatalities was transportation incidents (291 deaths), followed by assaults and violent acts (151), contact with objects (121), and falls (109). 52 people died from exposure to harmful substances or environments and 19 from fires and explosions.”
Workplace violence is a major cause of death in the state. We (NC Occupational Safety and Health )identified 13 people who were killed on the job due to violence in NC in 2012, but the actual number is likely considerably higher. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics found that 19 people were killed on the job in 2011 in NC due to violent acts.” (North Carolina Worker’s Dying for a Job)
“The U.S. Labor Department audited North Carolina in 2010, finding that the state downplayed serious safety problems, issued weak fines to violators and failed to properly handle whistleblower complaints.” http://www.thetimesnews.com/news/region-state/study-more-n-c-workers-die-on-job-than-reported-1.135223
Most people despise Mugshots.com, the Slammer, etc. It seems as though that We like to glorify in the pain and misery of others. Slammer and Mugshots lets us see ourselves at our worst ” – in mugshots. (I thought DMV pictures were the worst). Most of the people in these photos are not convicted criminals, just people arrested, and without an official “indictment“. These sights glorify in our misery (shame is not enough). Even if we are found NOT GUILTY, not indicted, wrong person, etc….these websites continue our misery and shame. Then when we ask for corrections, they are going to charge us.
Now a Georgia legislator wants to help. State Rep. Roger Bruce (D-Atlanta) states that “People are being extorted”.
“It wouldn’t affect police agencies or the news media, but it would be aimed at commercial companies that charge to remove it from their websites or publications. In addition to requiring free removal, his bill would also allow lawsuits for damages as well as require police agencies to copyright mugshots they take”. http://www.11alive.com/rss/article/268273/40/Georgia-lawmaker-wants-to-police-mugshot-websites
Here is the legislation. GOOD LUCK GEORGIA. WE APPRECIATE YOU. http://www.legis.ga.gov/legislation/en-US/Display/20132014/HB/150