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Pennsylvania Enacts a New Medical Marijuana Law

By Michael Klazema on 5/23/2016   |   Tags:   drug screening  Marijuana  medical  Pennsylvania

On April 17, 2016, Pennsylvania passed the Medical Marijuana Act which legalizes the prescription and use of medical marijuana for individuals with a serious medical condition and establishes a medical marijuana program. The new marijuana act, effective May 17, 2016, includes antidiscrimination provisions and work exceptions for employers.

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Indiana Police Officer Never Had a Background Check

By Michael Klazema on 5/23/2016   |   Tags:   Indiana  police

A former police officer was recently sentenced to eight years in prison for reckless homicide, after a car crash that resulted in the death of a soon-to-be father. The man never had a background check when he was hired, despite a driving record that included 17 license suspensions.

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OPM Proposes Federal Ban the Box Rule

By Michael Klazema on 5/6/2016   |   Tags:   ban the box  OPM

The Office of Personnel Management wants to ban the box for all federal employers. The rule, if approved, would remove criminal history questions from job applications and delay background checks until after employers have extended conditional offers of employment.

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City of Austin Bans the Box and More

By Michael Klazema on 4/15/2016   |   Tags:   ban the box  Texas

On March 24, 2016, the City of Austin, Texas passed a Fair Chance Hiring ordinance that requires an employer to delay both asking the applicant about criminal history and conducting a background check until the employer has first made a conditional employment offer to the applicant.

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  • May 23 — On April 17, 2016, Pennsylvania passed the Medical Marijuana Act which legalizes the prescription and use of medical marijuana for individuals with a serious medical condition and establishes a medical marijuana program. The new marijuana act, effective May 17, 2016, includes antidiscrimination provisions and work exceptions for employers.
  • May 23 — A former police officer was recently sentenced to eight years in prison for reckless homicide, after a car crash that resulted in the death of a soon-to-be father. The man never had a background check when he was hired, despite a driving record that included 17 license suspensions.
  • May 20 — An alleged sexual predator was able to use his position as a nurse to sexually assault at least eight women in Colorado over a two-year period. Colorado does not require hospitals to disclose misconduct allegations to the state licensing body.
  • May 18 — The Pennsylvania legislature made a mistake in 2014, inadvertently exempting doctors, hospital workers, and clergy members from background check requirements. Now, a new bill is closing the loophole.
  • May 16 — A recent House Oversight Committee hearing showed how badly Congress wanted the federal government to adopt social media background checks for job applicants. The Office of Personnel Management is even developing a tool that will crawl the web in search of applicant information.
  • May 06 — The Office of Personnel Management wants to ban the box for all federal employers. The rule, if approved, would remove criminal history questions from job applications and delay background checks until after employers have extended conditional offers of employment.
  • April 22 — The White House announced that 19 companies signed the Obama Administration’s Fair Chance Business Pledge. The pledge calls on its signers “to provide individuals with criminal records, including formerly incarcerated individuals, a fair chance to participate in the American economy.”
  • April 21 — The Department of Housing and Urban Development is pushing new rules that would crack down on landlords and their ability to judge housing applicants based on background checks. The new guidance policies would essentially replicate what the EEOC is already doing in the employment sector.
  • April 20 — The Office of Personnel Management wants to screen security clearance candidates by looking at their social media activity. The office is reportedly looking for a system to automate an entire social media monitoring system.
  • April 15 — On March 24, 2016, the City of Austin, Texas passed a Fair Chance Hiring ordinance that requires an employer to delay both asking the applicant about criminal history and conducting a background check until the employer has first made a conditional employment offer to the applicant.