An Act Relating to Fair Chance in Employment
Sec. 1. 26 MRSA §600-A is enacted to read:
§ 600-A. Criminal history record information; employment application
Sec. 2. 26 MRSA §626-A, first ¶, as amended by PL 2019, c. 35, §2, is further amended to read:
Whoever violates any of the provisions of section 600-A, sections 621-A to 623 or section 626, 628, 628-A, 629 or 629-B is subject to a forfeiture of not less than $100 nor more than $500 for each violation.
This bill prohibits an employer from requesting criminal history record information on an initial employee application form, subject to certain exceptions. An employer may inquire about a prospective employee's criminal history record information during an interview or once the prospective employee has been determined otherwise qualified for the position. The bill prohibits an employer from stating on an initial employee application form or advertisement or otherwise asserting that a person with a criminal history may not apply or will not be considered for a position, subject to certain exceptions. The bill provides that if an employer inquires about a prospective employee's criminal history record information, the prospective employee, if still eligible for the position under applicable federal or state law, must be afforded an opportunity to explain the information and the circumstances regarding any convictions, including post-conviction rehabilitation.