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Pennsylvania Governor Wolf Issues Ban the Box Policy for State Jobs

In a prior post, we discussed “Ban the Box” legislation and how it can impact workers.

On May 5, 2017, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf issued a “Ban the Box” policy, relative to state non-civil service jobs.  Described as a “Fair-Chance hiring policy” for state agencies, the legislation will remove the criminal conviction question, otherwise known as “banning the box,” from non-civil service employment applications for agencies under the governor’s jurisdiction.  The Governor stated in his press release “banning the box will allow prospective applicants with criminal records to be judged on their skills and qualifications and not solely on their criminal history, while preserving a hiring agency’s ability to appropriately screen applicants as part of the hiring process.”  This policy is consistent with a growing national trend in recognizing the burdens those with criminal records must bear in attempting to obtain employment.  Policies such as these recognize the benefits and successes of rehabilitation and can help reduce the cycle of poverty faced by many working Americans.  There are a total of 23 states that have adopted Ban the Box Policies and 7 states have removed the conviction history question on job applications for private employers.

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