Mecklenburg County Bans the Box

Date: May 03, 2016 Last Edit: May 05, 2016

One-size-fits-all mandates don’t work for small business.

Mecklenberg County Bans the Box

In
March, Mecklenburg County joined the list of North Carolina cities and counties
that have “banned the box” on job applications that asks candidates to disclose
any criminal history upfront. So far, Asheville, Charlotte, Carrboro, Durham,
Durham County, Spring Lake, and Cumberland County have already enacted similar
laws. 

County
commissioners voted unanimously to remove the criminal background question from
the county’s employment application, effective immediately. The county will
still perform background checks on applicants who make it to the final stage of
hiring, as well as inquire into criminal history during the interview process.

While
the ban currently applies to only county hiring, Commissioner Pat Cotham, who
proposed the change, has already said she’d like to see the policy extended to
vendors who do business with the county and to the city governments of the six
towns in Mecklenburg County, reported The Charlotte Post.
 

NFIB
opposes ban the box legislation because of its impact on small business owners.
Gregg Thompson, NFIB’s North Carolina state director, has spoken out in the
past about how this kind of one-size-fits-all mandate is not the answer. It
takes away control and transparency from the hiring process, and it can also
cost business owners a lot of money and time. For example, if their chosen
candidate’s criminal history is disclosed late in the game and has relevance to
the job, the employer may have to start the hiring process all over again.
Small business owners are willing to give people a second chance, but they need
to have the information to consider at the beginning of the hiring search.

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