AccuSource Blog

Time-Sensitive Update on California Criminal Background Records Legislation

Immediate Action Required Image-01AccuSource has previously shared information regarding date of birth (DOB) redaction legislation impacting access to criminal records in California. This recent legislation (SB 2.507) has impacted background screening processes and the ability to report records obtained from California courts.

Our industry advocacy group, the Professional Background Screening Association (PBSA), has been working with Senator Bradford of the California State Senate for the last several months on SB 1262. This senate bill aids to mitigate the date of birth access issues Consumer Reporting Agencies (CRAs) like AccuSource, and their clients have faced in California over the last year. However, SB 1262 also faces opposition by those who wish to eliminate background checks in California. 

The bill has now advanced from committee to the Assembly floor for a final vote, which is tentatively scheduled for Monday, August 8, 2002.

Immediate support is needed to help ensure this important bill is voted into law!

The PBSA has asked for help from industry screening providers and their clients to demonstrate the importance of this legislation to Assembly members. Organizations located in California and those with employees either working or residing in the state can call their California State Assembly representatives today, August 5, 2022, to voice their support of California SB 1262 before the final vote on Monday. This action will help ensure California Assembly members understand the impact of SB 1262 on promoting safe workplaces and protecting California businesses.

Below is information on how to reach your California State Assembly representative and talking points to aid your communication regarding SB 1262.

Phone numbers for Assembly members can be accessed here.

Key Talking Points:

Introduce yourself and your company, and state you are calling to support Senate Bill 1262. In your own words, share your feedback on the key benefits a YES vote on SB 1262 affords your organization, including those listed below.

  • SB 1262 is vital for creating safe work environments and ensures Californians can quickly navigate the hiring process and return to work. 

  • Without access to basic personal identifying information (including date of birth) on court records, employers may be unable to decide whether an applicant represents an unacceptable risk of creating an unsafe work environment. If a required criminal background screen cannot be completed, organizations may not be able to move forward with onboarding and hiring the applicant. 

  • Criminal background checks help protect both employees and customers by:

1) ensuring a safe working environment by reducing the likelihood of workplace violence;

 2) reducing employee theft; and

3) meeting state law requirements designed to protect consumers and vulnerable populations including elderly, physically and mentally disabled, and young California citizens.  

  • Often state and federal regulations require verification of criminal history for specific positions. If SB 1262 does not pass, companies may be legally restricted from hiring California residents for those positions. 

Finally, ask your California State Assembly member to support California workers and businesses by voting “Yes” in favor of SB 1262.

If appropriate, you can also respond to the criticism of the bill – either proactively or in response to questions from the assembly member or their staff using the following points:

  • Opponents often state SB 1262 is unnecessary as California Department of Justice (DOJ) checks are adequate. This is entirely false.
     
    • By law, most employers cannot use the DOJ process. Users of DOJ checks must be statutorily authorized, and most employers do not meet access criteria.

    • The DOJ process requires fingerprint-based criminal checks – this process is often financially prohibitive and places an undue burden on job applicants for most employment positions. It also places an unfair impact on economically challenged and rural populations.

  • Opponents often state SB 1262 conflicts with California’s ban-the-box laws. This is not a true assessment. The commonly defined goal and purpose of Ban the Box legislation is to afford a responsible, inclusive, and fair background check process at an appropriate point in the hiring process.

  • Opponents often state SB 1262 newly expands access to private information. SB 1262 is not an expansion of access, but a return to the California legal guidelines that have protected California businesses, and their customers and employees for decades.

If you have any questions about SB 1262 and this request, please reach out to AccuSource’s Customer Success team at cs@accusource-online.com.

 

Cynthia Woods

Cynthia Woods

Interested in learning more? Click here or call us at 888.649.6272 today! 

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