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MAYOR BRONIN APPLAUDS CITY COUNCIL FOR URGING ACTION ON FAIR CHANCE EMPLOYMENT

MAYOR BRONIN APPLAUDS CITY COUNCIL FOR URGING ACTION ON FAIR CHANCE EMPLOYMENT
MAYOR BRONIN HERALDS COUNCIL ACTION AS A STRONG MESSAGE DURING NATIONAL REENTRY WEEK
 
Hartford, Conn. (April 26, 2016)— Today, Mayor Luke Bronin applauded the Hartford City Council for passing a resolution urging state legislators to support passage of An Act Concerning Fair Chance Employment (HB 5237). Also known as a “ban the box” measure, the bill seeks to prevent employers from requiring individual employees — or prospective employees — to disclose any criminal history until the employer has made a conditional offer of employment to such employee or prospective employee.

“When an employee is otherwise qualified, a past mistake — especially those unrelated to the nature of the job they're seeking — should not bar them from employment,” said Mayor Bronin. “This bill recognizes that past mistakes, particularly those mistakes made during youth, should not be a permanent barrier to employment. The Fair Chance Employment Act aims to strengthen Hartford’s efforts to reduce crime by promoting second chances for individuals with criminal records. The City Council’s support sends a strong message as we recognize National Reentry Week.”
 
Click here for more information on HB 5237: http://1.usa.gov/1VP5lcE.

One-in-three American adults have some criminal record, according to the Center for American Progress. And a conviction record reduces the likelihood of a follow-up interview or job offer by nearly one-half, according to the Council of State Governments.

Research shows that fair chance employment policies are also good for business. The decreased output of goods and services from those with criminal records results in an estimated $57 to $65 billion in losses to our national economy annually, according to a Center for Economic and Policy Research study.

Nationwide, more than 100 cities — including Hartford — and counties, as well as more than 20 states, have adopted “ban the box” policies to encourage employers to put a candidate’s qualifications first. At the federal level, President Barack Obama backed a “ban-the-box” policy in directing federal agencies to wait until later in the hiring process to look into job applicants’ records.

“We believe everyone deserves a second chance and a person’s prior mistakes should not automatically disqualify them from receiving an employment offer, let alone an interview,” said City Council President Thomas J. Clarke II. “Everyone should receive a fair and equal chance in obtaining a job and we hope our state lawmakers share the same sentiments.”

 
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