Skip to comments.Target Removing Criminal History Section from Job Applications
Posted on 11/04/2013 8:19:16 AM PST by YourAdHere
Individuals seeking employment with the Target Corporation will soon notice a change in the companys job applications.
The Minneapolis-based company recently announced that they will no longer question applicants about their criminal history. The company said it expects to remove the question from applications nationwide in the coming year.
According to the National Employment Law Project, the decision was based on a new Minnesota law and the efforts of grassroots organizations that have been pressuring the company to change their standards.
Target is finally doing the right thing by reforming its hiring policies so that qualified job applicants arent automatically screened out simply because they have an arrest or conviction from the past, Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project, said in a statement. Other large retailers around the nation need to follow suit, because their hiring policies send a strong message about whether they are committed to the communities that support their business.
Applications for public sector jobs in the state have been barred from asking applicants about their criminal history. In May, Governor Mark Dayton increased the reach of the law by requiring private companies to follow the rule as well.
According to the Minnesota Department of Human rights, employers will still have the authority and legal obligation to turn away criminals with certain records, including sexual offenses.
According to the National Employment Law Project, more than 10 states and 50 cities have all fallen in line with the Ban the Box movement, requiring that employers eliminate the box all applicnants are asked to check if they have served time in prison.
I think this is an excellent choice and for the organization itself, this speaks volumes as to how they are considering the people they want to hire, said Walter Lomax, project director for the Maryland Restorative Justice Initiative.
It is challenging whether its someone returning from a long-term or short-term incarceration. A criminal record is a hold-back for folks who have found themselves involved with the justice system, he added. Were not saying that at some point an employee shouldnt learn something about their employees criminal background. What we are saying is that they need to at least be given an opportunity for an interview. Then they can explain the circumstances of their incarceration.
Lomax has taken up many causes related to citizens returning to the populace from incarceration. In addition to efforts to allow ex-convicts to serve on trial juries, Lomax has dealt with many returning citizens and their difficulties finding employment.
I had one case where a man filled out 10 applications and every one asked [whether he had] a criminal record. He wasnt called back for a single one of them, he said. The reality is that he has to check that box because if he doesnt and they find out, he will be fired. It will be assumed that he is untruthful. It definitely adds a level of anxiety.
I have never shopped there and now I never will.
so businesses are not able to screen their potential hires for criminals???
yeah....no foreseeable problems with this at all.
I had no idea they were Minneapolis-based. Now I’m glad I swore off shopping there. Haven’t in over 2 years.
Absolutely not the same as removing the question. You can ask the question and use that as a point to consider without it being an automatic disqualification. For example, there is a considerable difference between some drunken vandalism twenty years ago vs. just getting out of jail from opening up the safe at your previous job.
If someone was in jail for something minor, or something unrelated to the job, maybe this makes some sense.
But, for example, if someone had been in prison for stealing money or embezzlement from a previous employer, isn’t it legitimate to avoid hiring such a person to manage a company’s finances? Or to keep sex offenders away from working with kids?
Or is the next great “civil rights” issue the issue of ex-convict’s rights????
When I read that they don’t allow the Salvation Army on their properties at Christmas time I vowed never to shop there.And I’ve kept that vow.
Thanks for the tip RE: Salvation Army.
Absolutely right. In fact, every app I've ever filled out explicitly states that a prior conviction is not necessarily a disqualifying mark against an applicant. They want you to be truthful.
Now, truthfulness is relegated to covertness.
Target is a French outfit — perhaps they’re following Napoleonic law.
I interviewed with them back in ‘87 trying to get a computer support job for all their sites.
They said I didn’t meet their needs so I drove to CA and got a job with Intel.
Maybe I should have lied and said I had a criminal record.
This just removes the question from the ap, it doesn’t prevent them from doing a criminal background check which most companies do these days as a matter of routine.
Obama administration sues BMW plant for not employing felons
The EEOC is suing a BMW plant in Spartanburg, SC. The EEOC says they are discriminating against black people by not employing felons.
The notorious EEOC is a Soviet style commission created to fulfill the unconstitutional mandates of the Civil Rights act. In 2012, without even getting congressional approval, the Obama administration unilaterally added new mandates for the EEOC to enforce. The Obama administration is demanding companies employ dangerous black felons. When manufacturing jobs are targeted, the end results is simply to drive companies outside of the USA. The companies will look for locations where they have the freedom to hire whomever they like.
I have been turned away from jobs because of it.
That stated, I am STRIDENTLY opposed to this movement. I don't mind facing up to my consequences, and damn if I will have others not face up to theirs!
Hopefully they do a background check on all of their employees first. This may be more telling than what the applicant can tell themselves. If they don’t do a background check, they are both stupid and liable for anything that happens in the store or on their property.
Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project: Target is finally doing the right thing by reforming its hiring policies so that qualified job applicants arent automatically screened out simply because they have an arrest or conviction from the past.”
I believe she’s lying. Being arrested is NOT the same thing as serving time in prison. I haven’t seen the actual Target form in question, but it appears to ask the applicant if they have “served time in prison.”
This politics of “fairness” is getting absurd. It started with an honorable (if misguided) attempt to force businesses to hire blacks. A private business, one not associated with government, has constitutional rights of freedom of association and private property. The US Constitution only prevents governments from discriminating on the basis of race.
King Barry is LITERALLY fighting a war on Capitalists by pressuring them to hire insurgents. Gee, that’s odd.. That’s the same thing America did on November 6, 2008.
I don't have a problem with the ban. The problem with Scarlet Letter type policies is that people with criminal records can't ever go straight. I don't think felons should get the vote, but they should definitely not be automatically removed from employment consideration just because they have criminal records. Everyone has a stake in the reintegration of people with criminal records into society. The alternative is convicted criminals remaining on the welfare system their entire lives, with sidelines in criminal activity like drug-dealing, et al.
I thought Obama signed that into law. ??
(We know that Obama would have flunked)
Are you currently wanted by law enforcement for any criminal activity or as a suspect in any criminal activity?
Are you presently an escaped convict?
Are you part of a terrorist organization, do you support ant terrorist organizations or have you committed any acts of terrorism?
Are you currently engaged in any criminal or terrorist activity?
Are you legally present in the United States and legally eligible to be employed?
Do you advocate the overthrow of the US Constitution?
Who is the rightfull owner of the I.D. documents and the social security number you are currently using?
I’d qualify that by saying that the ban should only apply to large employers (1000+ employees). A small business that hires a former convict by accident could end up going bust, if that hire turns out badly. Large businesses have a certain amount of redundancy built in.
Article: “ A criminal record is a hold-back for folks who have found themselves involved with the justice system,”
A criminal record is a hold-back for folks who have been caught doing bad things.
Imagine Target hiring a child molesters for the children’s clothes section. That could end very badly.
Now I know where to NOT shop at Christmas. What makes these businesses think customers would be willing to hand over credit cards, debit cards, or checks to do business/make purchases? We may not be going to a cashless society as soon as people think.
From an Human Relations viewpoint, the difference is that the box forces the applicant to put the information down in black and white. If the background check does not corroborate the information provided in the box, then the human relations employee can deal with the situation from a position of power in the subsequent discussions / negotiations.
Are they removing criminals from the emplpoyee roster?
I haven’t shopped there in years, and I don’t think I’d feel safe shopping there now.
I hope you get convicted by the gestapo of some crime against progressivism and become permanently unemployable.
Don’t ask a bunch of potential employees in a retail store about their criminal past.
What could go wrong??
Back in the 70s, it was not only common to ask about “Arrest History” but other unnecessary and now-illegal things. A place I worked used a job application that asked: “Do you drink alcohol, and if so provide details”. Most people just wrote something like “Socially” or “a beer or two on the weekend”.
A few wrote things like “Budweiser” or “a glass of wine with dinner”.
But the funniest was a good looking gal who applied for a job who wrote a short paragraph similar to: “Usually just a few glasses of wine with friends, , but I prefer tequila shots when I’m on business trips with my boss and feeling especially lonely”.
Well played, but she didn’t get the job.
Right on, kindred spirit.
Let us know when you’re out of rehab. Maybe you can get a job at Goodwill.....
hope you get convicted by the gestapo of some crime against progressivism and become permanently unemployable....85% of all losses recorded by crime statistics in the retail section come from employees. So you want to pay for all these miscreants? I don’t understand your post(?). Please elucidate.
Necrophilic pedophiles working to the toy section of Target or playing Santa Claus there?
The workforce in retail is 85% female. You do have an obligation to look after the safety of your employees. By, for example, not hiring a paroled rapist.
Actually, on this one narrow point, she tells the truth. Arrests are public knowledge too, and can (and have personally) disqualified.
1. An arrest does not a criminal make. It’s that whole “innocent until proven guilty” thing. Often, charges are dismissed, there’s no indictment etc. So there’s no point in asking about arrests.
2. Convictions are a different kettle of fish. But the person may have been convicted of something incredbily minor with no moral turpitude (e.g. underage possession of alcohol) or of an offense that is no longer a crime in some states (e.g. minor possession of marijuana).
3. Just because it can’t or won’t ask on a job application doesn’t mean it can’t still check (with the Internet, it’s super easy).
Of course in this modern internet world where you can look up anybody’s arrest record for free who needs to put it on the app? Just have your HR bookmark a couple of site and plug all applicants into these search. Really at this point all you need from an applicant is their name and socsec, anything else you want to know about them you can get on your own in less time.
Well put. I might differ partially on the “felons shouldn’t vote” part. I would qualify that with “if it’s a violent felony or you were caught with a weapon, then you lose your right to vote.”
Good Lord. I work at Target in healthcare. Their sales aren’t exactly strong right now ...so many dumb moves ...I hate it.
Of course their prices will have to increase to cover all the theft by employees.
Because, they are lining themselves up to hire some very accomplished thieves... and worse.
Target is absolute junk anyway, but they’ll have to pad the bill for everyone else!!
The problem with hiring felons, knowingly or unknowingly(you should have asked) is the fact that the employer becomes a sitting duck for lawsuits should that employee commit another crime. Trial lawyers use it as a stick to beat you with regardless of any and all circumstances. You become ‘partially responsible’ and if you happen to be the only party with deep pockets who get to pay the entire judgment. Sure, the check can be moved to after an initial interview, which has a cost associated, and disqualify the candidate later, but for how long? The purpose of these advocacy groups is to make it illegal to refuse to hire based on criminal record without any concomitant immunity from lawsuits. Lawyers will get to sue for ‘civil’ rights’ violations on the front end and damages on the back end: sweet.
Actually I think I agree with this to a degree. I think a company should only go back say... 7-10 years on convictions.
I worked in HR for a company that paid very well so all the locals wanted to work there. They typically had to work as temp laborers, pass drug tests and background.
One guy worked as a temp for awhile - and I don’t know why it took so long to get the info but he’d worked there a week or two before they found out he had a selling marijuana conviction. I overheard him talking to the HR manager who was in the process of firing him, he said “when will I ever be able to put this behind me? It’s been over 20 years and it still haunts me and keeps me from getting a good paying job”.
Course, that would be drug convictions, not sure how I’d feel about rape, crimes of pedophilia, maybe go back forever on them.
If Target’s sales are weak, it’s because Wally World is perceived as undercutting them in prices. Their electronics and sporting goods lines are lousy, too, by the way. Nothing to do with whether or not they ask for arrests or convictions for their new hires.