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Is it legally risky to refuse to hire people who have been arrested?

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in Employment Law,Hiring,Human Resources,Leaders & Managers,Management Training

Q. I am considering putting a policy in place to prohibit hiring any job applicant found to have an arrest record. Are there any legal risks?

A. Absolutely. The EEOC considers the use of arrest records as a hiring factor illegal. The EEOC launched its E-RACE (Eradicating Racism And Colorism from Employment) Initiative in 2007. (See “4 discriminatory hiring practices will lure the EEOC to your door” in the January 2010 issue of Ohio Employment Law.)

The E-RACE Initiative is designed to improve the EEOC’s efforts to ensure workplaces are free of race and color discrimination. The EEOC has identified the use of arrest records as such a barrier.

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