Maloney asks local employers to “ban the box”

Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney recently sent a letter to employers in his district urging them to eliminate the customary question on job applications that asks prospective workers if they have criminal records.

His letter, part of a national “Ban the Box” movement, argues that asking job seekers that question at the outset clouds the employment prospects for people with criminal convictions by causing them to get screened out, even if they are otherwise qualified for the work they are seeking. “Our criminal justice system is broken from start to finish,” Maloney wrote in the letter. “We say we want folks who serve their time to get a job when they leave the system, but all too often the job applications they fill out make it impossible for them to get a fair shot. ”

Maloney, a Cold Spring Democrat representing New York’s 18th Congressional District, is also a sponsor of the “Fair Chance Act,” a bill that would drop the criminal-record question from job applications at federal agencies and contractors.

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