Ban The Box!

Darryl Atkinson on “Adam Ruins Everything”

..regarding lack of educational opportunities in our prison system, which impacts post-release employment opportunities.



Ban the Box – Right or Risky?

Aired: 01/10/2016 “Many activists in North Carolina argue that the criminal record box on job applications should be abolished. Rep. Garland Pierce of District 48 in the North Carolina House of Representatives, Umar Muhammad with the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, and Daniel Bowes with the North Carolina Justice Center address some of the questions around how this move can help and where the risks lie.” Click here to view UNC-TV video



Georgia, first 000001secondchancebutton-smaller_0southern state to Ban the Box!!

On Monday, Governor Deal signed an executive order ( making Georgia the fourteenth state, and the first in the South, to enact “ban the box” for state employment. This fair chance hiring policy postpones questions about a job applicant’s criminal history until it is demonstrated that he or she is one of the most qualified candidates and also requires applicants have the opportunity to explain his or her criminal history before denial.


“BOXED OUT” of further education report by CCA, the Center for Community Alternatives

“Unfortunately, SUNY admission policies and practices for people with felony convictions now undermine its founding principles. Such
individuals are a sizeable portion of New York State’s population, and they are finding it difficult to access the State’s public higher education system. This report describes the SUNY policies and procedures and presents data that document that the current policies discourage people with felony convictions from completing applications and thus prevent them from being admitted to a
SUNY school.” To read the entire report, in PDF format at:


“Ban The Box!” – removing barriers to employment for the formerly incarcerated.

Click here for the one page fact sheet.


National Employment Law Project (NELP)

Major US cities and counties adopt hiring policies to remove unfair barriers to employment of people with criminal records. Click here to read the report in pdf format.

Check out NELP’s online, comprehensive Fair Chance – Ban the Box toolkit, available  “Ban the Box,” a term first coined by All of Us or None organizers, refers to removing the check-box that asks about convictions from job applications. Fair Chance campaigns do more than remove the check-box; they’re about adopting a robust set of fair hiring policies to ease employment barriers for people with records.


After They Check the Box

Published: April 29, 2012 – NY Times – The federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has reaffirmed and updated a 25-year-old ruling that bars companies from automatically denying employment to people based on arrest or conviction records. It is must reading for all employers.  Read more at:


Statewide Ban the Box Reducing Unfair Barriers to Employment of People with Criminal Records

Nationwide, over 50 cities and counties—including New York City—have now taken thecritical step of removing unfair barriers to employment in their hiring policies. Widely known as “ban the box,” these initiatives typically remove the question on the job application about an individual’s conviction history and delay the background check inquiry until later in the hiring process. Read the pdf presentation, composed by NELP (National Employment Law Project) at:


‘Ban the Box’ being considered in Charlotte NC    3/4/13

Hundreds are gathering at the Government Center Monday night to ask the City of Charlotte to take the question asking about previous convictions off the city’s job applications. It’s what the City of Durham decided to do in 2011. Erik Ortega with the Center for Community Transitions works daily to help people with criminal pasts find jobs. Ortega is among a group that is asking Charlotte NC City Council to pass an ordinance to “Ban the Box,” which would remove the question of whether someone has been previously convicted of a crime from the City of Charlotte’s job applications, until after the initial interview. Click here to read the article.


Raleigh NC convenes community around “Ban The Box!”

Tuesday, November 23, 2010 RALEIGH — More than 20 years ago, a Warren County Superior Court judge sentenced Wonis Davis to 10 years in prison for second-degree murder. Since his release in 1999, Davis has bagged groceries, cooked, supervised a restaurant kitchen, worked as a church custodian and had two of his fingers sliced off while working in construction. But his past haunts him every time he fills out an application and has to check the box next to the question: “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?”  Click here to read more


Durham Initiative on Criminal Record and Employment

Today’s Herald-Sun front page highlights the initiative of the Southern Coalition on Social Justice to keep the criminal record from being a definitive bar to employment. Click here for a link to the full article.


Fayetteville NC newspaper, “The Observer” is running a very informative article on “Ban The Box!” efforts

For the past couple of months, community advocacy groups including Community Success Initiative, the Raleigh Second Chance Alliance, Congregations for Justice and the N.C. Justice Center have held meetings around the state attempting to jump-start a campaign to remove the criminal justice question – “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?” – from job applications in North Carolina. Click here to read the rest of the story.


Illinois Bans the Box

On April 28th, Governor Pat Quinn’s office sent a letter of commitment to remove the question regarding criminal convictions from initial applications for employment at Illinois state agencies. The letter was sent to Rep. Ford, a longtime proponent of ban the box and expungement policies. See Rep. Ford’s press release.


Minnesota Legislation Expanding Ban the Box to Private Employers Continues to Move

HF 690, introduced on Feb. 18th, expanding Minnesota’s ban the box to private employers has passed the Senate with bipartisan support. Senator Champion, author of the bill, expects it to pass the House as it has bipartisan co-authors. See article.


Kansas City, MO Bans the Box

Recognizing the role of employment in reducing recidivism, Kansas City, MO, has joined the movement to ban the box on city job applications. The ordinance prohibits the City from considering nonconviction arrests, expunged or annulled convictions, and misdemeanor convictions where no jail sentence can be imposed. Ordinance available here.


Returning Citizens Public Employment Inclusion Act of 2010

The D.C. City Council has passed Bill 18-826 which removes the box inquiring into whether one has a criminal history from D.C. government applications for certain positions. The law, which passed by an 11-0 margin with two council members abstaining, will remove the inquiry about an applicant’s criminal history from many of the city’s job applications, and applicants for positions other than those for which a background check is required by law will not be asked for information about their criminal histories until after an initial determination has been made about their qualifications for the job. In addition, city employers (the law does not apply to private employers in the District) will be required to consider balancing factors, including the time since an offense occurred, evidence of the applicant’s rehabilitation, and the relationship of the offense to the position sought, when considering an applicant for employment or an employee for advancement.This is another success in the “Ban The Box!” campaign to improve fairness in hiring practices. Click here for the entire Bill 18-826 in PDF format.


Philadephia Mayor Michael Nutter signs Ban the Box into Law
Click here for complete ordinance


Group wants Durham to ‘ban the box’

DURHAM — Unsatisfied with the city’s promise to cut back on asking job applicants questions about their criminal history, supporters of a so-called “ban the box” law want elected officials to pass an ordinance that would cover private-sector employers too. Read more: The Herald-Sun – Group wants Durham to ban the box


Cumberland County drops criminal conviction check box on applications

Cumberland County is no longer asking job seekers about past criminal convictions on its application form.Commissioners on Tuesday unanimously approved delaying that question until the interview stage, giving potential employees the chance to have their qualifications considered before their pasts. Read the details by clicking here, to the news website.