View Poll Results: Should the government be able to prevent discriminating against job applicants?

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Thread: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

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    Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    A Yahoo featured article's URL is below.

    I didn't know this was against the law. Apparently it is (or can be). If you admit to having a felony within the past 7 years, as an employer, a company is not allowed to reject your application for that reason.

    As the article explains:

    "Because discriminating against those with criminal records disproportionately hurts African Americans, the practice may violate the Civil Rights Act, which prohibits race-based hiring discrimination. Indeed, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has said that although considering an applicant's criminal record may be acceptable on a case-by-case basis, an "absolute bar to employment" for such people is illegal."


    Help wanted — sixty-five million need not apply - Yahoo! News

    But this also leads to other questions: age discrimination or gender discrimination.

    These things are illegal. I don't agree with the government intervening. I'm sure many of you do. As some will undoubtedly ask, "what about race discrimination?" This is no different in my opinion (at least at the federal level, as with any of these equal opportunity bills mandated on private companies). Obviously, I'm not suggesting that they DO discriminate based on race, but rather that the federal government shouldn't intervene.

    It's a private company! For public services, sure, do what you wish.

    So the question:

    Do you believe the government should be able to prevent private companies from discriminating against applicants based on: age, gender, race and criminal history?

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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    Business has the right to exclude people if they wish. Its a bad business decision though.

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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    I believe that employers should not be allowed to reject applicants based on race or gender. However, I believe they should be able to reject applicants based on a past criminal history. If a guy was convicted of fraud or theft, would you want to trust that person with company finances or management? I believe they shouldn't discriminate based on gender or race (and that includes hiring blacks over whites due to affirmative action or "corporate diversity").
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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    Quote Originally Posted by fredmertz View Post
    Do you believe the government should be able to prevent private companies from discriminating against applicants based on: age, gender, race and criminal history?
    No the government should not be able to. In the end, it's pretty much laziness on our part to put in the rules. This can all be properly regulated through educated and intelligent consumerism. But it takes work on our part to do so.
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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    Hiring is about discriminating. You have a job opening. You have 325 applicants. The only process that would not be discriminatory would be a lottery. "Okay, the guy who can't dance is our new dance instructor. Congratulations."

    Someone who has finished high school has an edge over someone who finished the 5th grade. Hiring someone who has experience in your field is discriminating against the guy with no experience. Hiring someone who comes with a portfolio of references from past employers over someone who doesn't have a single past employer who says he would hire him again is discriminatory. Or, how about the guy who has sued his last five employers over workmans comp claims. You want to hire him? Or, how about someone who sued his last employer for demanding he work on the Sabbath? You want to hire him for a job that involves working on the Sabbath? Would you discriminate against someone who flashed your secretary while waiting for his interview?

    A friend of mine had to sue a local trucking company to get a job driving a delivery truck. The company said she wasn't big enough or strong enough to do the job. They were forced to hire her. Six months later, she was off with a permanent disability. The company was right. My friend said that the problem was that the company refused to make a "reasonable" accommodation of getting truck 1/3 smaller in all dimensions and hiring an assitant to move the heavy packages. Right.

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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    Quote Originally Posted by Ikari View Post
    No the government should not be able to. In the end, it's pretty much laziness on our part to put in the rules. This can all be properly regulated through educated and intelligent consumerism. But it takes work on our part to do so.
    there is nothing in the constitution that properly empowers the federal government from playing ANY role in this area and sorry libs-the Commerce Clause was improperly interpreted and everyone knows that



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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    Quote Originally Posted by TurtleDude View Post
    there is nothing in the constitution that properly empowers the federal government from playing ANY role in this area and sorry libs-the Commerce Clause was improperly interpreted and everyone knows that
    The Commerce Clause has to rank up there with one of the most abused powers of government.
    You know the time is right to take control, we gotta take offense against the status quo

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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    Quote Originally Posted by Patrickt View Post
    Hiring is about discriminating. You have a job opening. You have 325 applicants. The only process that would not be discriminatory would be a lottery. "Okay, the guy who can't dance is our new dance instructor. Congratulations."

    Someone who has finished high school has an edge over someone who finished the 5th grade. Hiring someone who has experience in your field is discriminating against the guy with no experience. Hiring someone who comes with a portfolio of references from past employers over someone who doesn't have a single past employer who says he would hire him again is discriminatory. Or, how about the guy who has sued his last five employers over workmans comp claims. You want to hire him? Or, how about someone who sued his last employer for demanding he work on the Sabbath? You want to hire him for a job that involves working on the Sabbath? Would you discriminate against someone who flashed your secretary while waiting for his interview?

    A friend of mine had to sue a local trucking company to get a job driving a delivery truck. The company said she wasn't big enough or strong enough to do the job. They were forced to hire her. Six months later, she was off with a permanent disability. The company was right. My friend said that the problem was that the company refused to make a "reasonable" accommodation of getting truck 1/3 smaller in all dimensions and hiring an assitant to move the heavy packages. Right.
    Exactly correct. The reason why CRA and also affirmative action hasn't destroyed more businesses is that some HR personnel are more artful than others in culling applicants. Ubiquitous vagueness and plausible deniability are the keystones for sifting through all the undesirables.
    Last edited by LookingGlass; 03-24-11 at 09:01 PM.

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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    Quote Originally Posted by fredmertz View Post
    Do you believe the government should be able to prevent private companies from discriminating against applicants based on: age, gender, race and criminal history?

    Age - Depends on job. A company should not be forced to hire a 80 year old man as a furniture mover and if Walmart only wants to hire seniors and cripples as greeters instead of young perfectly healthy able bodies people as greeters then that is their business. Some jobs depend on people who are able to lift heavy weight and not pass over and some jobs or more done as a service to the community like jobs for the elderly or disabled. Jobs that do not meet these two exceptions the government should ban businesses from discriminating on age.

    Gender -Depends on job.If Hooters only wants to hire females as waitresses, a maid cafe only wants to hire females as waitresses and Chip and Dales only wants to hire males as strippers then that is there business seeing how those businesses cater only to a specific crowd. If a business is not trying to attract a specif gender or a certian sexuality then they should not be allowed to discriminate on Gender. Jobs that require heavy lifting can simply weed out females though weight lifting and endurance ability requirements.

    Race is about the one thing the government should prevent companies from discriminating on. It should not even be a question on a job application and affirmative action should be illegal.

    Criminal history- depends on job. If its a job handling money then an employer should not be forced to hire someone convicted of theft or robbery, if its a child care provider then an employer should not be forced to hire someone convicted of child molestation or rape. In those cases the government should mandate that they ask specific questions like "have you been convicted of assault on a child, child abuse, child molestation or rape" on a application for child care provider, priest or any other job handling children, Have you been convicted of theft on a job application for a bank teller. If it's the law that an employer is not supposed to discriminate on past convictions then an employer should not be legally allowed to ask period.
    Last edited by jamesrage; 03-24-11 at 09:49 PM.
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    Re: Can employers reject applicants who have a criminal history

    I do not believe that the government should have any say in private business, outside, perhaps, ensuring some generalized requirements for job safety and the like.

    In my mind, it would be better to let a business discriminate on whom they hire based on race or any other factor - and get at least partially boycotted by the marketplace for it.

    Of course, this might not happen everywhere - I doubt a business hiring only people who were of X race or whatever would be boycotted if the people in the area they did business in agreed with such a policy.

    For example, a business in, say, Saudi Arabia that only hired people who believed in X sect of the Islamic faith would likely have far less issue if said faith was the prevalent one in that area.

    In my ideal world, the marketplace would and should dictate to the business (through his success or lack thereof) what policies were acceptable, and said marketplace would dictate no discrimination other than the quality of the potential employee’s work and history of work.

    Of course, criminal background would be part of that equation, but race, sex, and religion should not be.


    Of course, this all depends on how you define “private business” vs. “public business”, or whatnot…
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