- Created on Tuesday, 10 February 2015 12:08
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Effective October 1, 2014, Connecticut further limited the rights of employers to use criminal records in making employment decisions. Public Act 14-27 amends Conn. Gen. Stat. § 31-51i, subsections (d) and (e), which up to this point prohibited employers from denying employment to a prospective employee, or discriminating against or discharging a current employee, solely on the basis that the employee, or prospective employee, had a prior arrest, criminal charge, or conviction, the records of which had been erased pursuant to section 46b-146, 54-76o, or 54-142a. Further, employers were prohibited from considering convictions where the employee or prospective employee received a provisional pardon pursuant to 54-130a. For current employees, these rules applied only to arrests, criminal charges and convictions that occurred prior to the time of employment.
The new amendment expands these protections to cover criminal convictions for which the employee or prospective employee has received a “certificate of rehabilitation” under 54-130a. A “certificate of rehabilitation” is defined as “a form of relief from barriers or forfeitures to employment or the issuance of licenses, other than a provisional pardon, that is granted to an eligible offender by (A) the Board of Pardons and Paroles … or (B) the Court Support Services Division of the Judicial Branch….” Again, for current employees, the expanded rule only applies to arrests, criminal charges and convictions that occurred prior to the time of employment.
These new restrictions reflect a growing trend in Connecticut and beyond to limit the use of criminal histories in making employment decisions.