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Congressional Committee Report

On November 24, 2014, Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (H.E.L.P.) issued a scathing report, taking the Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC) to task for a laundry list of egregious tactics. The report’s title sums it up nicely: EEOC: An Agency on the Wrong Track? Litigation Failures, Misfocused Priorities, and Lack of Transparency Raise Concerns about Important Anti-Discrimination Agency

The Report

The Senate H.E.L.P. Committee Report doesn’t pull any punches. Inside are key findings of questionable practices and litigation failures by the EEOC. The report criticizes the agency’s sketchy litigation tactics, its practice of filing suit without a commission vote, questionable discovery requests, the lack of cooperation with defense counsel and a failure to conciliate. It points out that the EEOC has been ordered to pay sanctions and attorney’s fees ten times since 2011, and it has been “openly chastised” by the courts. The report also slams the EEOC for a lack of transparency, citing the dearth of reports from the General Counsel’s office, the practice of introducing guidance without public comment, and failure to respond to F.O.I.A. requests.

The report includes a chart listing the ten cases where the EEOC has been ordered to pay sanctions over the past four years. The list includes the Peoplemark case, which involved disparate impact claims based on the company’s background screening policies.

To sum it up, the report asserts that the EEOC’s tactics are ineffective, burdensome, and are costing taxpayers too much money.

A few of the specific complaints contained in the executive summary of the publication are as follows: [...]

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Employment Background Screening

As Bob Dylan would say (or sing) the times they are a-changin’. From the workplace, to technology, to our own lives, we’re living in a time when change is inherent. And with ever-changing background screening laws and other screening requirements, employers should be prepared to face changes in the hiring process. So what’s step one? Create a flexible screening program with a trusted screening partner that can walk your company through necessary changes.

It was with future changes in mind that Dina Anzalone, Senior Manager of HR with Leviton, began searching for a background screening company. She knew that the screening program Leviton set up in the beginning would not look the same within a year or two, and because of that, it was essential to choose a partner that could adapt to the company’s needs over time.

How Leviton Built a Better Hiring Process with Background Checks

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Background Checks Financial Services

You work hard to safeguard not only your company’s finances, but those of your clients as well. And as a company in the financial services industry, you deal with both on a daily basis. From a business perspective, it’s vital to the success of your organization that your finances are not only in order, but that you can entrust your company’s financial information with your employees. From a personal perspective, you are serving a wide range of customers—who are entrusting your company with both their personal and financial information.

For an industry that’s already heavily regulated to keep sensitive information secure, you have to wonder, is it possible to increase security? When it comes to the safety of your company as well as your customers—you can’t be too careful. And your customers’ information should be particularly safeguarded by your employees, whether you work for a bank our any other financial institution (private wealth management, brokerage services, credit union, credit card company, insurance company…the list goes on). [...]

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Background Check

They say a background check can cost someone a job, but what’s the cost of employers not doing a background check and making bad hiring decisions? It’s difficult to pinpoint the precise value of your employees. I mean, they are worth the world to you, right? However, when it comes to hiring and retaining new employees—ones that you hope will have a lasting contribution to your company, you can in fact pinpoint your costs if an employee does not work out. [...]

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Denver Background Checks

Denver’s year-old policy allowing for the disposal of pre-employment background checks in its jail system is garnering more attention for a system already under the microscope. An April 2013 policy allows for the destruction of pre-employment records in as little as three years after the employee is hired. This is only a year above the minimum set by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and far below the minimum recommended by Colorado municipal clerks and consultants. Keep reading to learn the three failures of background checks in Denver’s jail system.

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Criminal Mugshot

While reading Orange is the New Black recently, I was struck by a point the author made about the difficulties prisoners face when they’re finally able to leave prison and re-enter society. After living in an institution that supplies them with a job, food, and place to live, many are unprepared to step back into the “real” world.

For example, the book’s author mentions that because of advantages she had before prison (like a college degree) there was a job waiting for her when she finished her sentence—which was not the case for many prisoners. Many of the women around her did not even have a high school diploma let alone a college degree. And not only did they lack education, but experience. Many of the prisoners had never had real jobs. With little practical job training available in prison, job opportunities have become severely limited for the formerly incarcerated.

To Hire Or Not to Hire?

The message I want to share is simply that employers shouldn’t be afraid to hire ex-offenders just because of a conviction. While there are cases when a candidate with a criminal record should be disqualified for the safety of your employees, clients, company, etc., there are instances when you shouldn’t let a conviction stand in the way of your hiring decision.

On the candidate’s side of the argument, it’s fair to say for most—they are looking for jobs. They want jobs. Whether they spent time in prison, or simply made unfortunate mistakes in the past, many want to redeem themselves by finding a stable job. And it’s for individuals like these that employers have the choice to look beyond the results of an employment background check.

Whether you need to be convinced that hiring ex-offenders could be a good idea or you want to hear best practices for doing so, keep reading. [...]

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Employment Background Screening

Fall has officially arrived in Northeast Ohio complete with chillier temperatures  and of course, a variety of posts on the IQ Blog. Haven’t had a chance to keep up? See a few of our top posts below in addition to the full blog here. And stay tuned to our blog to hear about our upcoming webinar at the end of October and more!

BMW Flips Script on EEOC: Probes Agency’s Background Check Practices

BMW is questioning why EEOC can conduct employment background checks as a reliable exercise in hiring risk management, but questions BMW’s right to do so. Read More

Congress Criticizes the EEOC’s Policy on Background Checks

Congress is showing signs of life in the fight for employers to conduct reasonable background checks. Learn more about three recent bills aimed to increase the accountability of the EEOC. Read More

Ride-Sharing Companies Feeling the Strain of Background Checks in California

Three major ride-sharing services, Sidecar, Uber, and Lyft have been warned that company practices violate California law in two areas: background checks and car-pooling. Read More

NFL Player Introductions to Include Criminal Records?

You don’t have to be a football fan to know that the NFL is facing an unprecedented amount of negative publicity over the criminal transgressions of some of its players. Read More



 

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EmployeeScreenIQ president and chief operating officer, Jason B. Morris will present, “My Candidate Has a Criminal Record. Now What?” at the HR Florida Conference & Expo in Orlando, Florida on October 6, 2014, 4:15pm-5:15pm.

Not a month went by in 2013 without a multi-million dollar lawsuit filed against an employer for their background screening practices.

While a criminal record should not automatically disqualify a candidate, employers also want to protect their company by properly screening candidates. [...]

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EEOC Policy on Background Checks

Congress is showing signs of life in the constant fight for employers to conduct reasonable background checks. Representative Tim Walberg, R, Mich., chairman of the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections, held the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s feet to the fire in a hearing on September 17, 2014. The hearing focused on three recently introduced bills aimed to increase the accountability and transparency of the EEOC and to offer employers limited protections in the use of criminal history. [...]

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BMW Questions EEOC Background Screening Practices

What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Or so thinks BMW, who has asked a federal court to compel the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to produce documents relating to any policy, guideline, standard or practice used by the workplace bias watchdog in weighing the criminal conviction records of applicants looking to work for the agency.

The Case

You might recall that EEOC is suing BMW Manufacturing Co. LLC for their use over their use of criminal background checks in hiring which they allege discriminate against minorities. Here’s a quick recap. [...]

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