President Obama’s Fair Chance Business Pledge Broken Down


From whitehouse.gov: “The White House is building on past efforts by challenging businesses to take on the “Fair Chance Business Pledge,” a nationwide call-to-action to accomplish the shared goal of creating a stronger set of opportunities for people who have been impacted by the criminal justice system.”

So what does it all mean? Today we are breaking down this pledge into its two basic parts, and outlining what the commitments are.


Step One: Promote Fair Chance Hiring Practices

At its core, the Fair Chance Business Pledge is designed to break down the barriers that have prevented certain groups of people, particularly those with criminal records, from gaining employment, education, and training that can help to turn their lives around and contribute to society. A few of the calls to action outlined by the pledge:

  • “Ban the Box” by pushing the criminal background check later in the hiring process.
  • Training HR staff to keep criminal records in proper context to make a fair decision.
  • Increase internship and training availability to applicants with prior criminal records.
  • Using RELIABLE BACKGROUND CHECKING PROVIDERS to make sure the records are accurate and belong to the applicant in question.
  • Hosting a “Fair Chance and Opportunity Job Fair.”

Step Two: Take Action in Your Local Community

The pledge’s primary purpose is to create fair opportunities, but it’s also looking to have businesses contribute in other ways such as:

  • Supplying tools for success such as business clothing, cell phones, web service, transit cards, and child care services.
  • Offering support to regional reentry facilities.
  • Providing mentors to children of incarcerated parents.

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