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EEOC Focus On Criminal Background Checks Raises Negligent Hiring Concerns

The EEOC recently has stepped up enforcement against employers who use criminal background checks to screen potential employees. The agency contends that policies that exclude applicants with criminal records violate Title VII because they have a disparate impact on blacks and Hispanics, as InsideCounsel reported in April.

But employers say they are caught in a Catch-22, citing their obligation under OSHA's general duty clause to provide a safe workplace and their liability for negligent hiring claims following incidents of violence or harassment.

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Mary Swanton

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