Is Your Screening Program Legally Compliant?
March 22, 2010
Is your background screening process compliant with State and/or Federal laws? In some cases, like the story below, companies balance what they think is right and the letter of the law. As we all know the EEOC and the FTC have some pretty stringent guidelines on how to properly screen an individual. Sometimes hiring a convicted felon is the right thing to do, everyone needs to work right? However, in some cases your good deed could violate state statute. Companies of all sizes struggle with this every day. To ensure you are getting good advice, make sure your screening provider is up to date on all the federal and state laws surrounding background screening and hiring.
A South Side company has employed dozens of convicted felons over the past five years to make fundraising phone calls on behalf of well-known charities in violation of Pennsylvania law, according to publicly available records.
By hiring professional solicitors with criminal backgrounds to raise money for diverse and well-known groups, Outreach Associates Inc. appears to have violated Pennsylvania’s 1990 Solicitation of Funds for Charitable Purposes Act.
Read Outreach Associates’ statement, regarding employment questions
“If a professional solicitor employed somebody who was convicted of a felony, or a misdemeanor involving dishonesty, then that would be a violation of state law,” said Tracy McCurdy, director of the Pennsylvania Department of State’s Bureau of Charitable Organizations.
“Assuming if we were to find something like that to be true that would be something that the bureau would be extremely concerned about.”
In response to inquiries by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette following a six-month investigation, the company announced Friday that it had suspended nine employees with criminal records.
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