The Westchester County Board of Legislators passed the Fair Chance to Work law on Dec. 3, 2018. The law is set to take effect on March 3, 2019.
Under the new ban-the-box law, employers with four or more employees are prohibited from discrimination against job applicants based on an individual’s arrest record or criminal conviction. Also, these employers are prohibited from inquiring about an individual’s arrest record or criminal conviction anytime during the application process.
Furthermore, employers must not act based on an applicant’s criminal history until the employer has performed a written analysis of the applicant’s record and other factors under Article 23-A of the New York State Correction Law. The written analysis must be provided to the applicant and the applicant must be allowed at least three business days to respond while the position is held open.
Next, the law does not apply to circumstances when background checks are required for employment purposes. These circumstances include, but are not limited to, school district and government positions.
Last, the law states aggrieved individuals have the right to compensatory damages, including but not limited to, actual damages, back pay, front pay, mental anguish and emotional distress, as well as expenses related to attorney fees.
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