Arizona Governor Doug Ducey just recently signed an executive order banning the question asking about criminal history records from state employment applications. Arizona has now joined many other States and Jurisdictions banning the question on job applications that asks whether or not the applicant has a criminal record. The national movement has effected hiring processes and most especially the pre-employment background screening process. In the case of Arizona the new law delay’s questions related to an employment applicant’s criminal record until after the initial stages of interviewing. Other States and municipalities ban-the-box laws forbid the employer from performing criminal background checks on the job applicant until a conditional offer of employment is made; this also includes not inquiring about criminal history as well until after the conditional offer is made.
The new Arizona ban-the-box law only applies to state employment applications however state laws tend to trickle into the private sector meaning that businesses in Arizona should take preemptive steps in updating their employment background screening programs to reflect State law. Now is the time to review any existing pre-employment background screening policies to ensure full compliance with existing law and potential changes in law. Every time a state or municipality enacts ban-the-box legislation it is a clear signal to all business to make sure they are compliant with laws governing the use of public records in employment screening, especially the use of criminal background records.
From Lexology.com (Nov. 07, 17):
On November 6, Arizona governor Doug Ducey signed an executive order making Arizona the most recent state to adopt a “ban the box” law. The state joins Pima County and Tucson – Arizona localities that have already joined the “ban the box” movement.
Under the new policy, state agencies will delay questions related to an employment applicant’s criminal record until after the initial stages of interviewing (i.e., until an applicant has submitted an application and received an initial interview). lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=e47d3ced-bb50-4bfb-aa34-2882d5242805
As the number of States and Municipalities adding ban-the-box legislation increases the likely hood that this will effect pre-employment screening laws of businesses nationwide is extremely high. Criminal record inquires get moved from being a part of the application process to a question asked post-offer and one that has to be very specific to the position in question.
The ban-the-box movement is designed to help formerly incarcerated individuals in the USA gain a more equal footing during the job application process. The theory is based on the fact that many employers were immediately discarding job applications from applicants that checked off that they had a criminal history. Now without that question being asked on the initial application the thought is that ex-offenders would be given a better opportunity at gainful employment thus leveling the playing field.
With the question of criminal background history delayed the job application process should in theory become more equal for individuals with a criminal past.
It is extremely important that businesses and organizations in light of the new Arizona law review and update their hiring procedures and policies. Additionally the best practice for creating or updating existing employment screening policies and procedures is to work with a professional USA based background screening agency to ensure compliance with all current laws and potential laws.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found at: http://www.criminalbackgroundrecords.com/news/2017-11-22-Ban-the-Box-Activity-Highlights-Immediate-Call%20to-Action-for-Hiring-Managers.html
Although most employers in the USA utilize criminal background checks and other background checks as part of their employment screening process this has not occurred fully with organizations like schools, churches and any group involved with youth sports. It seems like every day on the Internet there are articles about malfeasant coaches abusing youth athletes.
In Lafayette, Indiana an assistant boys volleyball coach was charged in child seduction and related charges.
From jconline.com (Aug 22, 17)
Lafayette School Corp. Supt. Les Huddle said Barmby worked as a paraprofessional and substitute paraprofessional, in addition to being an assistant coach, for less than a year before she was terminated following the criminal investigation. jconline.com/story/news/2017/08/22/ex-jefferson-high-school-coach-accused-child-seduction-allowed-travel-out-state/571896001/
A Minnesota high school recently put a paid coach on administrative leave due to inappropriate and illegal behavior with a minor.
From kstp.com (Aug 30, 17):
A Hudson High School junior varsity girls basketball coach has been placed on paid administrative leave after sexual assault-related charges were filed against him this week.
… has been charged with first-degree child sexual assault for having contact with a person under the age of 13, according to the filing. … has also been charged with repeated sexual assault of the same child, using a computer to facilitate a child sex crime, and for causing a child ages 13-18 to view sexual activity. kstp.com/news/hudson-high-school-girls-jv-basketball-coach-arrested-charged-for-sex-assault-louis-joseph-french/4590445/
A background check on a youth coach could include:
- Employment and / or volunteer verification
- Personal reference verification
- Education / Certificate verification
- Sexual Predator registry
- Criminal History Record search
- Department of Motor vehicles record check
It is very important that organizations throughout the country perform thorough background check on all volunteer and full time personnel. This is especially important for coaches and volunteers that have access to the youth through sports programs and other youth programs. When it is clear to new applicants pursuing a job that gives access to the youth that an in-depth background check will be conducted on them; one that includes public records like criminal background records and other records like driving records along with employment and education verifications, in-person interview and address history trace this knowledge could prevent malfeasant applicants with a criminal past to even apply for the position.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found at: http://www.criminalbackgroundrecords.com/news/2017-09-15-Background-Checks-on-Employed-and-Volunteer-Coaches-for-Youth-Sports.html
With summer in full swing children across the country are participating in sport camps and other athletic programs. A must for parents is that they feel their child is safe with the sporting group coaches and staff. One way to help achieve this kind of peace of mind is to make sure that all summer camp staff including volunteer coaches undergo a thorough background check including criminal background checks, sex offender registry checks and necessary interviews and reference checks.
Recently in Kewanee Illinois local citizens requested background checks on all park district coaches.
From StarCourier.com (Jun. 15, 17):
Two women whose children participate in the Kewanee Park District’s baseball teams addressed the park district board of commissioners Thursday night seeking background checks for all the park district’s coaches.
The women said they are concerned about those adults who volunteer to coach the park district’s youth teams after a baseball coach was taken into custody from a Kewanee baseball field earlier this week. starcourier.com/news/20170615/parents-ask-park-board-to-background-check-coaches
While the offense the baseball coach taken into custody appears minor it did create enough concern for parents to question the overall screening process of volunteer coaches.
As a society we need to protect at-risk populations like children from malicious individuals looking to find an avenue to spend time with children. Volunteer coaching positions are one such environment that nefarious individuals would exploit to access children. However if these individuals seeking volunteer coaching positions find out that they must first undergo a rigorous vetting process that would uncover a history of criminal records and/or sex offender records they may be less apt to apply for such a position. A thorough background screening program that includes volunteers is a great deterrent for past offenders from applying and to catch those that try to slip through the cracks. US Organizations that utilize volunteer coaches should partner up with a third party background screening company to properly vet all these individuals prior to giving them access to children or young adults.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found here.
With summer approaching it is time for families to think about what their children will be doing over the long school break. Summer opportunities for kids include summer camp, athletic camps and other events and ventures that could include staying overnight and living away from parents under the care of camp counselors, coaches, volunteers and other supervising adults. The concern among others the parents have involve the safety of their children. And one procedure that helps elevate this concern is that all camp counselors and adults that are going to have unsupervised time with their children is that they pass a thorough background check.
As parents weigh in on the different opportunities available to their children during summer break they often opt to send them to summer camp.
Summer camp comes in a variety of forms:
- Day camp: Generally a localized activity covering a single day and filled with a wide variety of activities.
- Sleep over camp: These camps can last from a single over-night to extended visits up to a couple of weeks or even months.
- Theme camp: A theme can extend to location or activity or both. A week on a ranch in Montana tending to horses and cattle. A weekend in the mountains learning about a different topography or geography and so on.
From Laduenews.com (Mar. 30, 17):
Camp constitutes a place for kids to try new things, become more independent and gain self-confidence. Simple challenges for children include building fires, going on hikes or learning to ride horses; more complex situations, though, include understanding how to get along with others, learning to ask for help and trying things outside one’s comfort zone. Letting go can be difficult for parents, but it’s life-changing for kids. (1)
Camp is a great outlet for a child’s energy, time and curiosity. As long as it takes place in a safe environment leaving the parent’s only worry being about how homesick their children might become. Finding out that such a camp conducts rigorous background checks on all their staff brings another layer of safety that parents demand. Included in this background screening process is always a thorough criminal background check that also queries every US States sex offender registries ensuring the camp staff has not had any sexual offenses in the past.
As a parent it is important to ask the camp what kind of background screening they conduct prior to letting them work in the camp with children. When looking for a summer camp for a child one key component of any good camp is the thoroughness of the background check including interview and reference checks. A complete background check is a powerful tool to utilize within any camp related screening program. A top-notch background screening program including a solid interview dramatically increases the protection of a child from potential risk and malfeasance.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found here: http://www.criminalbackgroundrecords.com/news/2017-04-19-Its-Time-to-Protect-Young-Athletes-and-Campers-with-Thorough-Background-Screening.html
A large chunk of the At-Risk population in the USA is comprised of the elderly. In a country with an aging population, it is important that laws and regulations are in place to properly care for this part of the community. An absolute must before letting a caregiver in a home with unsupervised time with an elderly patient is a thorough caregiver background check. This should include a criminal background check, sex offender background check, any necessary credentials check and of course reference checks.
Without proper insurance hiring caregivers can be very expensive and puts a tremendous financial burden on the family whose member needs personal care. Often times in such situations low cost care is sought out, however these people may not have adequate credentials or resident status to appropriately care for an elderly patient. This situation could be disastrous and opening up the opportunity for elder abuse. It is important that caregivers become qualified for such a profession by going through adequate training to reach sufficient qualifications.
When it comes to at-risk populations including the elderly, it is imperative that caregivers undergo a thorough background screening prior to entry into the home.
Elder abuse comes in many forms and families should be well aware of the different types. Some may be overlooked or held inconsequential, but each are equally disruptive and devastating to the elderly.
The Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Community Living provides information on their website regarding elder abuse and provides the following categories:
From acl.gov (https://acl.gov/newsroom/observances/WEAAD/docs/WEAAD-Factsheet-How-To-Answer-Tough-Questions.pdf)
Elder abuse refers to intentional or negligent acts by a caregiver or trusted individual that causes harm to a vulnerable elder. Elder abuse takes many forms, including:
- Physical abuse
- Sexual abuse
- Financial abuse and exploitation
- Emotional or psychological abuse and neglect (including verbal abuse and threats)
In the end, the nation as a whole must take precautions to protect the aging population of this country. That includes performing thorough background checks and getting reference checks prior to letting a caregiver in the home thus helping to protect the vulnerable part of the community. There are several well qualified third-party background screening companies that can assist families and organizations obtain the proper background reports. Having access to these background reports makes it easier to determine whether or not a potential caregiver is going to treat the elder patient(s) with the dignity and respect they deserve. CriminalBackgroundRecords.com is one such company that can perform caregiver backgrounds for the purposes of protecting the elderly.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found at: http://www.criminalbackgroundrecords.com/news/2017-01-13-Caregiver-Background-Checks.html
Modern day pre-employment background screening has moved beyond just criminal background checks. Alternative background reports like driving record checks and professional verifications are also being used by human resource professionals across the nation. The HR personnel understand the importance of working with a third party background screening company to get all the background reports available in order to help them make intelligent and well informed hiring decisions.
With increased scrutiny over the use of criminal background records in the employment screening process it is still one of the most important employment background checks to perform. However, if an employer compliments a criminal records check with a driving record check, social security number validation with address history trace and professional verifications like education verification and employment verification a better picture emerges as to the viability of a job applicant.
Looking into prospective employee’s driving history is a worthwhile background check even if the job does not require much driving. A single motor vehicle incident can create a significant liability to a company. More information is always the best choice as the chances of the wrong person falling through the cracks is drastically reduced and the goal of risk mitigation is achieved.
Criminal background checks with driving record history, SSN validation w/address history and professional verifications combined create a powerful barrier for malfeasant and high risk job candidates from getting through the vetting process.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found here: http://www.criminalbackgroundrecords.com/news/2016-06-15-Critical-Reports-for-Pre-Employment-Background-Screening-Beyond-Criminal-History.html
All across the USA there are millions of family’s that send their kids to summer camp or other summer related youth programs. These programs usually entail children spending unsupervised time with camp counselors or other youth program volunteers. Since children fall into the at-risk population it is imperative that all those spending time with children undergo a criminal background check. A volunteer background check should include a comprehensive national criminal background check, national sex offender registry search and reference checks before being entrusted to an at-risk population.
Whether a camp involves overnight stay or just a day camp, all volunteers should be background checked. A complete and thorough background check can act as a deterrent to predators.
In New Orleans the recent arrest of a volunteer baseball coach highlights a clear need for background screening.
From NOLA.com (Mar. 10, 16):
(1) …questions about the screening process arose after… a former football, baseball and basketball coach who had volunteered for decades, was arrested in October. In February, a grand jury charged him with aggravated rape of a child younger than 13, four counts of sexual battery, four counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile and nine counts of production of pornography involving juveniles. nola.com/politics/index.ssf/2016/03/jefferson_parish_background_ch.html
This incident further highlights the importance of a thorough background screening of anyone spending unsupervised time with children including counselors, coaches and volunteers. Combining court records/public records along with an in-depth interview and if relevant a credentials check these steps collectively will act as a deterrent against potential predators and will help weed out persons with a criminal past that may prove detrimental to at-risk populations like children. This is why it is extremely important for organizations hiring volunteers to properly background check all their employees and volunteer help through a well-qualified third-party background screening company as a best practice for parents, volunteer groups and organizations.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found at http://www.criminalbackgroundrecords.com/news/2016-04-20-Summers-Coming-and-Its-Time-For-Camp.html
Protecting at-risk populations is paramount and none more obvious than protecting children. In order to manage this risk it is important to conduct background screening on adults with access to other people’s children. One job comes to the forefront and that is the job of a nanny or similar position that allows unsupervised time with children. A nanny background check is critical in protecting at-risk populations and a third party background screening company should be used to perform the background checks. Criminal background checks performed through a professional background screening company would yield the best results as they know how to thoroughly conduct a nanny check and are in full compliance with laws governing the use of public records and/or consumer reports.
Barons.com states the importance of vetting employees working in the home and points out the most important step before hiring is to perform at least basic due diligence on the candidate. It must be understood that job applicants may say inaccurate statements or purposefully not tell the truth. This is why conducting some independent research yourself is necessary yet it is even smarter to hire someone else or a background screening company to do this for you. These companies excel at what they do and the background reports furnished are unbiased and include court records including criminal background checks, sex offender registry checks, reference checks and social security number information with address history etc.…
By revealing past history via public records, consumer reports and pertinent verifications parents and other family members can make well informed decisions regarding who they hire to watch over their children or their elderly relatives. One thing is clear, proper background screening helps mitigate risk and goes a long way to protect at-risk populations including children and the elderly.
To read more about this subject read recent press release found at here.
Summer camps and youth organizations are preparing for the summer season. Many youth organizations hire volunteers to help with the youth programs like summer camp. With volunteers spending time with children an at risk population the need to perform background checks on these volunteers becomes paramount. Some states like New Hampshire just passed new legislation that requires anyone who works with children at youth skills programs undergo a criminal background check effective this year. Thoroughly vetting counselors and other volunteers found in summer youth programs helps make these environments safe for children and give parents peace of mind. A volunteer background check should include a criminal background check, sex offender registry search and a social security number validation with address history trace. To read more about this subject read recent CriminalBackgroundRecords.com press release.
Along with ban-the-box legislation that removed the check box asking if the applicant has a criminal record, expungement of a criminal record is the best way to achieve gainful employment. If a person has a criminal record on file but has satisfied all the court ordered requirements and sentence they may be eligible for expungement of their criminal record. Some general conditions for expungement eligibility are, the seriousness of the offense, satisfactory completion of the terms of previous sentences, the number of past incidents on file, completion of all probation requirements, satisfying a certain waiting period between incident and expungement, and there cannot be any incidents that interfere or intersect with the criminal record in question and there cannot be ongoing or pending criminal investigations. Currently only a United States Judge can grant an expungement. For a person that has only committed one crime and has paid their dues for it, filing for an expungement of their criminal record is the best course of action they can take to assist with re-employment. When a criminal background record is expunged it is as if the person never committed the crime as the criminal offense is either sealed or destroyed thus not visible to the law. Once the record is expunged the person can say that they have no criminal history if asked by an employer. When a criminal background check is placed on this person after the record is expunged it should come back clean, stating No Criminal Records Found. To read more about this subject read recent CriminalBackgroundRecords.com Press Release