Columbia City Missouri Bans The Box - December 11th, 2014

On December 1, 2014, the Columbia City Missouri council passed a new ordinance which bans the box for public and private employers. The new ordinance is effective immediately and prohibits employers from asking on an employment application or otherwise inquiring in any manner, until after a conditional offer of employment has been made if the applicant has been arrested, charged with or convicted of a crime. The law does not apply to employers who are required to exclude applicants who have certain convictions pursuant to local, state or federal law or regulation, positions where a bond is required and the conviction would prevent the person from obtaining the bond and when employers employ individuals licensed under the Emergency Medical Systems Act. The ordinance also encourages employers not to automatically decline an applicant based on a criminal history but instead to evaluate all available information, including the frequency, how recent the conviction and the severity of the crime prior to denying employment. Complaints from individuals can be filed with the Columbia City Human Rights Commission and penalties can include fines up to $1000.00 and imprisonment for up to 30 days.

The text of the ordinance can be found on the City of Columbia website: