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Ringing in the New Year with Four Ban-The-Box Laws

With the start of 2015, new ban-the-box laws became effective in Illinois, the City of Chicago, and Montgomery and Prince George’s counties in Maryland. Ban-the-box laws prohibit questions about an applicant's criminal background on employment applications and often include additional restrictions on inquiries by employers into criminal history. Illinois’s Job Opportunities for Qualified Applicants Act, which became effective on January 1, prohibits covered employers from inquiring into the criminal history of an applicant until after the applicant has been determined to...

NLRB Creates Right to Use Corporate E-Mail to Organize and to Complain About Work: Ten Key Implications for Employers

In a precedent-setting ruling, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or the "Board") held last week in Purple Communications that Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) requires employers, except in very limited circumstances, to open their corporate e-mail systems to union organizing by employees and to group discussions among employees about the terms and conditions of employment during non-work time.  The 3-to-2 decision overturns the Board's December 2007 decision in Register Guard, holding that because a corporate e-mail system is the employer’s...

Columbia Missouri Joins the Ranks of Ban-the-Box Jurisdictions

On December 1, 2014, the City of Columbia, Missouri, City Council enacted an ordinance restricting a private employer’s ability to inquire about job applicants’ criminal history information on an employment application.  Columbia’s legislation comes closely on the heels of similar laws enacted in the District of Columbia and surrounding regions.  Now, a total of 17 jurisdictions — six states and eleven counties or municipalities — have banned the box for private employers.  Many other jurisdictions are considering such legislation for private...

Four New Laws Within 40 Miles: The Washington, DC Area Accelerates the "Ban-the-Box" Movement

The Washington, DC area has become the leading edge of the "ban-the-box" movement, with four new ban-the-box laws applicable to private employers enacted in the past six months.  Baltimore, Maryland, started the trend when the City enacted an ordinance banning the box on May 15, 2014. Washington, DC and Montgomery County, Maryland, followed, passing legislation on August 28, 2014, and October 28, 2014, respectively.  On November 19, 2014, Prince George's County, Maryland, became the latest jurisdiction to ban the box.  These laws "ban" the criminal...

Louisiana Employers Are Restricted in Their Ability to Consider Certain Criminal Records for Employment Purposes

Effective August 1, 2014, Louisiana became another state to regulate employer use of criminal record information for employment purposes.  Under the new law, expunged records of arrests of convictions are now considered confidential and no longer part of the public record.  Those records also cannot be made available to any person or entity except:To members of law enforcement or criminal justice agencies or prosecutors investigating, prosecuting or enforcing criminal law or for other statutory purposes;Upon entry of a court order;To the person whose record has been expunged, or his...

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Format: 2015-01-26
Format: 2015-01-26