PRINTER'S NO. 2540
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
HOUSE RESOLUTION
No.
516
Session of
2019
INTRODUCED BY MURT, FRANKEL, DONATUCCI, KINSEY, SCHLOSSBERG,
BURGOS, McNEILL, HOHENSTEIN, WEBSTER, WILLIAMS, KOSIEROWSKI,
JOHNSON-HARRELL, McCLINTON, CALTAGIRONE, WHEATLEY, HILL-
EVANS, YOUNGBLOOD, ROEBUCK AND KIM, SEPTEMBER 23, 2019
REFERRED TO COMMITTEE ON LABOR AND INDUSTRY, SEPTEMBER 23, 2019
A RESOLUTION
Urging the Office of Administration to adopt a "Ban the Box"
policy relating to certain State agency employment
applications.
WHEREAS, "Banning the Box" or "Ban the Box" is the popular
name of a public policy that provides for the removal from
employment applications of an initial screening question about
criminal history record information; and
WHEREAS, The premise of the policy is that it allows
employment applicants to be judged on the merit of their
education, work experience and military record and not on the
vestiges of any past contraventions; and
WHEREAS, "Ban the Box" policies do not remove the question of
criminal history from the hiring process, just from the initial
phase of it in order to give all people an opportunity for their
applications to be fairly considered; and
WHEREAS, Under a typical "Ban the Box" policy, the issue of
criminal history is deferred until the first interview of an
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applicant is conducted; and
WHEREAS, "Ban the Box" policies should not apply to
employment positions in which a prior criminal conviction would
be contrary to the functions of the position, especially any
position involving the safeguarding or security of people or
property, such as law enforcement, jobs involving handling of
money or financial matters and positions involving contact with
vulnerable populations; and
WHEREAS, Since 1998, more than 18 state governments and 100
city governments have adopted "Ban the Box" policies, including
New Jersey in 2014, Georgia and Ohio in 2015, the cities of
Philadelphia and Pittsburgh in 2012, and Harrisburg in 2015; and
WHEREAS, Many persons who seek employment with the
Commonwealth are veterans who have served with honor in the War
on Terror, but who committed a criminal offense that taints an
otherwise distinguished record of service; and
WHEREAS, The Bureau of Justice Statistics estimates that more
than 90% of all prisoners will return to our communities and,
according to the Federal Interagency Reentry Council, 1 in 10
inmates is a veteran; and
WHEREAS, It is important that the Commonwealth provide a
viable pathway for our returning veterans and residents who
genuinely seek employment opportunities to participate in public
service and become taxpaying members of society; and
WHEREAS, The Commonwealth government can lead the private
sector in the practice of adopting "Ban the Box" policies and
hiring practices consistent with such policies; therefore be it
RESOLVED, That the House of Representatives urge the Office
of Administration to adopt a "Ban the Box" policy relating to
certain State agency employment applications.
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