Dec 7, 2012 No Comments ›› Dinah Tellya
Excerpted from The Washington Examiner: Ward 8 Councilman D.C. Marion Barry slammed his colleagues Friday for voting down the latest incarnation of his effort to protect ex-offenders from employment discrimination.
“I’m appalled at those of you who voted against the bill and think the business community will voluntarily hire returning citizens. It just isn’t happening,” Barry wrote. “If they were going to do it voluntarily, they would have already done it. The only way to get them to hire returning citizens and end this form of discrimination is to pass this legislation.”
Barry, recycling an argument from his public remarks earlier this week, also reminded lawmakers that legislation had been required in the past to “force society to do what is right.” He cited marriage equality — which he voted against in 2009 — and voting rights as examples.
Barry’s bill would have barred companies from asking about a job applicant’s criminal history before extending a job offer. If employers were to choose to rescind job offers after learning about a person’s record, they would have to prove a “relevant relationship” between the job involved and the applicant’s criminal history.