Press Call Monday: How Employment Credit Checks Hinder Job Opportunities

Release Date: 
February 27, 2013

While much of the country’s attention is focused on the need for job growth, a new report to be released Monday, March 4 by national public policy organization Demos reveals the ways in which the use of credit history in hiring acts as a significant barrier to employment and may lead to discriminatory hiring practices, particularly for people of color and the long-term unemployed. Drawing on new data from Demos’ recent National Survey on Credit Card Debt in Low- and Middle-Income Households, Discredited: How Employment Credit Checks Keep Qualified Workers Out of A Job includes first of its kind information on the proportion of jobseekers undergoing credit checks and denied work because of their credit history.

According to the study, which surveys low- and middle-income households carrying credit card debt, poor credit is associated with household unemployment, lack of health coverage, and medical debt -- factors that reflect individual bad luck and the slow economic recovery, not an applicant’s likely job performance or financial responsibility. Yet nearly half of businesses report using credit checks in hiring decisions, and it is not limited to high-level managers or those with fiduciary responsibility – many employers require credit checks for low-and middle-wage jobs.

WHO:

  • Tamara Draut, Demos Vice President of Policy and Research
  • Amy Traub, Demos Senior Policy Analyst and Report Author
  • Representative Steve Cohen (TN), Sponsor of The Equal Employment for All Act
  • Tanya Clay House, Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, Public Policy Director
  • Emmett Pinkerson - Worker affected by employment credit checks
  • Mike Roach - Business owner who has rejected the use of credit checks as part of the hiring process

WHEN:

Monday, March 4, 2013, at 11:00AM/ET

HOW TO JOIN:

Dial in (888) 491-8283

ID #15713126

ADDITIONAL DETAILS:

The full report is scheduled for release available on Demos.org at 12:00AM on March 4, 2013.

For more information, to speak with an expert on employment credit checks, or to receive an embargoed copy of the report, please contact:

Elektra Gray

egray@demos.org

212 485 6014