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Child protective investigator hired despite criminal past

HandcuffsThere are many professions where employees are held to a higher moral standard.  In these areas of work, the public generally expects a certain level of professionalism and calm decorum.  One of those industries would certainly be those tasked with working with children, and especially those who are tasked with protecting them. [Read more...]

New York City prison guard hiring practices under review

DeniedWhen hiring someone to watch over New York’s incarcerated, you’d think it would be an important consideration to not hire a criminal for the job.  In an awkward and potentially dangerous reveal of prison guard hiring practices, however, that seems to be exactly what’s happened. [Read more...]

Minnesota law now allows sealing of minor convictions

Sealed RecordsMinnesota may not have a reputation for being a state that is easy on crime, but they are opting to join a relatively forgiving movement this year.  Like many states over the past couple of years, Minnesota will be making it easier for those with certain types of minor convictions to have their criminal records sealed. [Read more...]

California sues Uber over background checks

TrafficUber has already caused its fair share of ripples in just a few short years of existence.  The rideshare/taxi replacement startup has become massive, with cities all over the country filled with their drivers.  In just a few seconds on the Uber app, you’ll have your ride all lined up, and at a price that usually undercuts other drivers for hire and taxi companies. [Read more...]

Program turns ex-convicts into personal trainers for the wealthy

Basketball PlayerAccording to recent statistics, over 40% of those who are born into the poorest income brackets in the US will remain there as adults.  Opportunities for these residents of largely urban neighborhoods are generally limited, and it can be challenging to climb above the social class one’s born into.  Of course, what can compound this issue even further is a criminal record.  The risk of forming such a record, as well, is higher amongst these low income citizens. [Read more...]

Oakland forum hopes to improve relations between minorities and police

Scales of JusticeCriminal records and their importance in things like hiring and housing decisions have been under fire, especially throughout the past year.  More and more, imbalances in the way that criminal convictions are processed and used in subsequent decisions have been scrutinized, leading to many people asking for things to change. [Read more...]

Springfield school district now requires teachers to report arrests

HandcuffsThe school staff in Springfield, Missouri is going to be subject to a subtle but important policy change soon that has to do with their criminal records. The newly proposed policy would require all staff working on school property to immediately report any arrest or criminal action as soon as it occurs. In fact, not reporting an arrest or conviction right away would result in a termination of employment. [Read more...]

Florida loopholes allow juvenile offenses to become public

StressPublic records in in the United States are a hot button topic; nearly every single day new laws are drawn up, scrapped, and voted on that seek to alter access to criminal histories in one way or another.  Recently, the extent to which potential employers can question applicants about their criminal pasts has undergone scrutiny and found itself very much the focus of a national debate.  Now, a new issue is taking the spotlight in the ever-exciting state of Florida:  the criminal records of youths. [Read more...]

Louisiana event helps people get their records expunged

Erase CrimeThe laws surrounding how to get a criminal record sealed or expunged are often extremely intricate.  For many who are trying to get their lives back together, this can present a near insurmountable barrier, especially if they don’t have the funds to acquire legal help navigating the red tape.  In Louisiana, the complexity of such laws is no exception, and the Justice and Accountability Center has something to say about it.

Last year, they helped nearly 1,000 people, through a combination of event days and scheduled appointments, learn if they were eligible for record expungement and, if so, how to go about doing it. [Read more...]

NY colleges stop asking applicants about criminal records

Background Check RequestFor a long time, the debate has raged on over what employers should be able to ask or not ask applicants about their history with criminal activity, when in the process such information should be unearthed, and what exactly counts; convictions? Sure. What about arrests? Well, there it starts to get a bit blurry. [Read more...]