City of Madison, Wisconsin | Legislative Information Center
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File #: 34801    Version: Name: SUBSTITUTE Accepting the Ban the Box Report and removing questions regarding an applicant’s criminal history from the City of Madison employment application for all City of Madison job vacancies except those in the Police Department and commissioned fire
Type: Resolution Status: Passed
File created: 7/9/2014 In control: COMMON COUNCIL
On agenda: 9/2/2014 Final action: 9/2/2014
Enactment date: 9/5/2014 Enactment #: RES-14-00679
Title: SUBSTITUTE Accepting the Ban the Box Report, and removing questions regarding an applicant’s criminal history from the City of Madison employment application for all City of Madison job vacancies except those in the Police Department and commissioned fire personnel, and directing City Staff to engage with vendors and contractors with the intent of introducing an ordinance within six (6) months requiring City vendors and contractors to ban the box from their employment applications in order to do business with the City.
Sponsors: Paul R. Soglin, Maurice S. Cheeks, Marsha A. Rummel, Shiva Bidar, Lucas Dailey, John Strasser, Larry Palm
Attachments: 1. Ban the Box final.pdf, 2. Res34801.pdf
Fiscal Note
No appropriation is required to accept this report, to modify employment applications as stated, and to communicate the intention of the forthcoming ordinance.  If the Next Steps suggested in the report are implemented, there could be fiscal impacts in the future.
 
Title
SUBSTITUTE Accepting the Ban the Box Report, and removing questions regarding an applicant's criminal history from the City of Madison employment application for all City of Madison job vacancies except those in the Police Department and commissioned fire personnel, and directing City Staff to engage with vendors and contractors with the intent of introducing an ordinance within six (6) months requiring City vendors and contractors to ban the box from their employment applications in order to do business with the City.
Body
WHEREAS, the City of Madison is committed to fostering a community where all members of our community have equitable employment opportunities, and
 
WHEREAS, the City can lead by example to ensure that employers can make excellent hiring and employment decisions based on relevant work qualifications without any opportunity to improperly consider a person's criminal record, and
 
WHEREAS, the City seeks to reduce recidivism through family supporting employment opportunities for qualified candidates with previous criminal histories; and
 
WHEREAS, the City has historically included questions regarding criminal history on job applications, and
 
WHEREAS, questions regarding criminal history may have an adverse impact on the city applicant pools; and
 
WHEREAS, criminal history may be ascertained during later stages of the employment process when a finalist for the vacant position has been determined  it is determined such information is necessary; and
 
WHEREAS, other states and municipalities have passed laws that prohibit the use of questions regarding an applicant's criminal history on an employment application, called Ban the Box policies; and
 
WHEREAS, the City of Madison intends to introduce a similar ordinance to apply to vendors and contractors who do business with the city within the next six (6) months; and,
 
WHEREAS, the Mayor and Common Council requested a report and recommendation and any necessary ordinance or resolution for the Common Council regarding removal of questions regarding an applicant's criminal history from the City job applications, and whether such a policy should extend to any city contractors,
 
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, the attached Ban the Box report is accepted and the City Human Resources Director shall remove all questions regarding an applicant's criminal history from the initial employment application for all City of Madison vacancies except those in the police department and commissioned fire personnel.  A criminal background check will be done only after a conditional offer of employment has been made to an applicant. In addition, the City of Madison Personnel Rules will be updated to specifically prohibit hiring managers from using private or public means of obtaining arrest and/or conviction information on candidates for employment. Finally, HR Staff or legal staff will notify candidates who are disqualified due to a background check with specific information regarding the reason, and will proceed in accordance with guidance provided by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunities Commission, and,
 
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, the City will communicate with various committees, vendors, and contractors, with the intent that within six (6) months from the adoption of this resolution, the City will introduce an ordinance prohibiting City vendors and contractors from asking applicants about their arrest and conviction history until after a conditional offer of employment has been made, consistent with the steps the City of Madison is taking internally.