Criminal History Checks Must allow a Right of Reply
"Mistakes can occur during criminal history checks, so it's vital to ensure job applicants have a right of reply when a record turns up, said WorkPro founder Tania Evans. HR professionals must consider a range of factors when relying on criminal history checks for recruitment decision-making, and the first step is to design a risk matrix. If a role does require a criminal history check, HR must make this clear to the job applicant. Only a limited number of people in the organisation should be allowed to manage criminal history checks, to ""ensure that the privacy of the individual is upheld"", said Evans. These people should be in a position to make a decision about the candidate's employment, to discuss outcomes with the candidate and to mitigate possible discrimination claims. The UK's High Court has recently ruled that England and Wales' system of requiring individuals to disclose prior convictions is in conflict with the Human Rights Act. The decision has potential ramifications in Australia due to the similarities in our legal systems, and the way Australia often follows UK employment law trends."