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City of KCMO Adopts Ban The Box Ordinance for Private Employers

On February 2, 2018, the City of Kansas City Missouri adopted a “Ban The Box” ordinance that applies to private employers.

The city joins more than 150 localities in adopting the so-called “ban-the-box” law, eliminating from employment forms the box to be checked if the applicant has a criminal history.

The Kansas City government adopted the policy for most city employees in 2013. Missouri’s then Gov. Jay Nixon established the ban for state employee hiring through executive order in 2016. Columbia enacted the first such ordinance for private employers in Missouri in 2014.

“Preventing an employer from inquiring about the criminal history of a job applicant interferes with an employer’s ability to provide a safe working environment for their employees because the employer will not be able to ask about or research prior offenses of the applicant. If an employer knows about a previous conviction and decides to hire the applicant, they can keep a watchful eye for behavior that may be indicative of a relapse of conduct and they may be able to prevent a future criminal act by the employee by not putting them in situations that could tempt them to return to criminal conduct. Associated Industries of Missouri opposes these ordinances that could lead to serious and dangerous results for employers and employees.” said Ray McCarty, president and CEO of Associated Industries of Missouri.

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