EEOC Files Suits on Criminal Background Checks

June 26, 2013

pic-eeoc-laborThe Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has filed suit against BMW and Dollar General for allegedly maintaining impermissible criminal background screening programs.

The EEOC has issued “guidance” indicating that it will regard much criminal background screening conducted by employers as suspect, even, for example, if that screening is required by state law.  The EEOC guidance provides little meaningful guidance to employers trying to determine when criminal background screening is permissible.  In its Strategic Enforcement Plan, the EEOC indicated that it intends to aggressively litigate against employers conducting criminal background screening because of its potentially negative impact on minority hiring.

NSBA has testified before the EEOC and the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights that employers should be able to protect themselves, their employees and their customers from criminals by conducting criminal background screens.  This is particularly important since employers that fail to conduct criminal background screens are likely to be found liable for the tort of negligent hiring if their employees commit crimes while on the job harming employees or customers.

To read the EEOC press release on the two lawsuits, click here.

To read the 55 page, 167 footnote EEOC “guidance” on criminal background screening, click here.

To read the EEOC’s Strategic Enforcement Plan, click here.

To read NSBA’s testimony on the Strategic Enforcement Plan, click here.

To read NSBA’s testimony before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, click here.

To read Traps for the Unwary: Arrest Records & Employment, click here.