Ban the Box nearly ready for council vote


Remember the “ban the box” ordinance we reported on in our March 20 issue?

A citizen working group is near completion on an ordinance for Portland City Council to consider, says union ally Midge Purcell of the Urban League of Portland. Purcell has been working on the task force alongside Graham Trainor of the Oregon AFL-CIO to hone the details of an ordinance that would give formerly incarcerated individuals a better chance at finding work after their release — by barring employers from asking about criminal history on the initial application. Employers could still do criminal background checks later in the process and decline to hire for relevant convictions, but the ordinance would at least give individuals a chance to explain the circumstances, and show how they’ve been rehabilitated.

Purcell says an ordinance is likely to see the light of day sometime in late May.


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