$15M settlement in Census Bureau background check lawsuit
The plaintiffs sued in 2010, alleging that those procedures violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 . According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), employers may violate Title VII if their policies have a disproportionate adverse impact based on race, national origin or other protected categories, and if employers cannot demonstrate the business necessity of such policies. In fact, in 2012, the EEOC provided guidance on the use of criminal history in hiring calls for a process of individualized assessment, where rejected candidates can make their case to demonstrate facts about the offense or about their lives that shows they should be given a second chance. In addition to paying $15 million, the Census Bureau is also required to hire industrial-organizational psychologists to design new criteria for criminal background checks for the 2020 census to limit disparate impact on job applicants. The decision could have consequences for an estimated 450,000 African Americans and Latinos who may have been passed over for jobs because of the Census Bureau’s background-check recruiting practices. ]]>
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