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Roadblocks to Employment Reentry

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Roadblocks to Employment Reentry

  1. Can employers ask job applicants about arrests not leading to conviction?
    No, employers may not ask job applicants about arrests not leading to conviction, with the two exceptions: law enforcement authorities and health care facilities. Cal. Labor Code § 432.7, Cal. Penal Code § 13203.

  2. Can employers consider arrests not leading to conviction?
    No. An employer is prohibited from seeking or utilizing any record of an arrest not leading to conviction for purposes of a hiring decision. Cal. Labor Code § 432.7(a).

  3. Does the State of California have standards prohibiting employment discrimination by public employers and occupational licensing agencies based on a conviction record?
    Yes. While the board may deny a license regulated by the California Business and Professional Code based on a conviction record, it must show that the licensee has been convicted of a crime, if the crime is "substantially related" to the qualifications, functions, or duties of the business or profession for which the license was issued. Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code §§ 480-490. A board should also take into account evidence of rehabilitation, and to develop criteria for considering the rehabilitation of a person. §482.

  4. Does the State of California have standards prohibiting employment discrimination by private employers based on a conviction record?
    No.

  5. Does the State of California restrict people with criminal records from employment in the field of home health care?
    Yes - for certain convictions. Applicants are barred from home health care employment for certain violent, sexual, and theft-related convictions, unless the conviction was expunged or the applicant has a certificate of rehabilitation. For non-disqualifying offenses, the State Department of Health Services may make individual determinations and consider factors such as rehabilitation and the nature and seriousness of the offense before barring an individual for a substantially related or alcohol-or drug-related conviction. Cal. Health & Safety § 1736.5(a),(b), and (c).

  6. After an individual has been convicted, does the state offer any mechanism to demonstrate that an individual has been rehabilitated?
    Yes. An individual convicted of certain felonies who has served his or her sentence or is released on parole and has satisfied the applicable waiting period, which ranges from seven to ten years, may petition for a certificate of rehabilitation and pardon. Individuals convicted of certain sex offenses may also petition for a certificate of rehabilitation and pardon which may relieve them of having to register as a sex offender, if they do not pose a continuing threat to minors. If the court grants the petition, it will declare the petitioner rehabilitated, the certificate of rehabilitation will be ordered and the court will recommend that the Governor grant a full pardon to the petitioner. If the Governor grants a full pardon, civil rights are restored, including the right to vote. Cal. Penal §§ 4852.01(a)-(d), 4852.03, 4852.13 and 4852.17.