A criminal conviction can follow a person for the rest of their lives. It affects almost every facet of daily living. When people learn someone has a criminal record, they may treat them differently. This leads to ostracization before even getting to know the individual. At work, the odds are stacked even more against people with a criminal record. There are several licenses that workers cannot apply for if they have a criminal past. Employers may also take care not to include people with criminal records on their shortlists.
However, this is starting to change. According to NBC 25 News, while still in office, the former governor ordered the state to remove the checkbox asking job applicants if they had been convicted of a felony. Instead, job applicants get asked to confirm that they are of good moral character. This is not to say that a person’s criminal history does not come into question at all. In fact, in some industries, it is impossible for a person who committed certain crimes to get employment in that field.
However, waiting until further down in the hiring process to verify the information for other workers allows people with a criminal background to put their best foot forward. In the spring of 2018, the former governor had also signed a new bill into law that restricted some of the questions employers can ask job applicants. The decision received bipartisan support in the state.
JPMorgan later followed up by removing the checkbox from their job applicants nationwide. The country’s largest bank told CNN that the move helps it to widen its pool of applicants. It also confirmed that it had already hired several people with criminal records for entry-level positions. The bank also intends to invest money in cities like Detroit to help support people with a criminal past who want to get their life back on track.