Employee background checks are an appropriate and necessary tool for every employer. Simultaneously, the EEOC is also an appropriate and necessary regulatory agency that has a duty to protect us from abusive, prejudicial hiring practices. Of late, the EEOC has been targeting employers who they believe are using employee background checks to discriminate against a particular class of people. Many of their challenges concern using criminal record findings to deny minority applicants jobs.
In a recent court decision involving a Texas based event planning business, the EEOC was not only found to be incorrect in their assertions about the event planner abusing their use of criminal background checks, but they were also required to pay the companies legal fees of close to $1 million dollars. Several other large suits are also underway involving the EEOC and criminal background checks used by employers.