"This new policy allows them a chance to be considered for employment based on their qualifications and experience related to the position they're applying for and not their past."
NEW ORLEANS - Today, the Council passed the "Ban the Box" ordinance which prohibits the City and City contractors from asking potential employees' criminal history on initial job applications. Councilmember Palmer authored the legislation, which will go into effect March 1, 2019. This will allow Mayor LaToya Cantrell's administration time to inform contractors and train employees on the new law.
In 2014, the City enacted a similar policy for classified and unclassified jobs in all City departments, boards, agencies, and commissions. Councilmember Palmer's proposed ordinance codifies this policy and extends it to all entities with a City contract, grant, or cooperative endeavor agreement.
"I've heard personal stories from ex-offenders and their families who remind us that, for far too long our criminal justice system has placed its priorities in punishment and not rehabilitation. Ex-offenders should not serve a life sentence after serving time in prison. This new policy allows them a chance to be considered for employment based on their qualifications and experience related to the position they're applying for and not their past," said Councilmember Palmer. "
The City will still conduct criminal background checks on all candidates and make final hiring decisions for people with records in light of other relevant information, including experience, the seriousness of any past conviction, when the incident took place and what has occurred in the applicant's life since then.
Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer, District "C"