A proposal that could have put many Connecticut employers at risk in the hiring process has been changed both to protect those businesses and potential job-seekers.
HB 5237 still “bans the box” by prohibiting job applications from including a question about a candidate’s possible criminal history.
But the revised bill, which the Connecticut State House approved on a 135-8 vote this week, affirms that businesses may run background checks on candidates if state or federal law prohibits people with criminal backgrounds being hired for a job.
The previous version of the bill would have made it difficult for employers to discern that information and could have put them at risk for costly discrimination complaints.
The revised proposal also calls for a task force to study the issue in the future.
Policymakers and businesses alike want to help nonviolent ex-offenders achieve productive lives.
The revised version of HB 5237 benefits potential job seekers, expands the talent pipeline, and protects employers.
Last year, state lawmakers passed a series of corrections and judicial reforms as part of Gov. Malloy’s “Second Chance Society.”
The initiative is designed to reduce the number of nonviolent offenders going into the corrections system—which is very costly to the state—and make it easier for those already incarcerated to leave the system with a ‘second chance’ at a meaningful life.
The revised version of HB 5237 is a wise reworking of the proposal to benefit potential job seekers, expand the talent pipeline, and protect employers in the state.