Fairfield and Woods P.C.

"Ban the Box" Introduced in Colorado House

January 30, 2019

Author: Colin A. Walker

On January 4, 2019, Representatives Melton and Herod introduced House Bill 19-1025, commonly known as “Ban the Box.” 

The bill would prohibit an employer from:

1) advertising that a person with a criminal history may not apply,

2) making such a statement on an employment application, and

3) inquiring about criminal history on an initial employment application. 

There would be exceptions for situations in which:

1) the law prohibits individuals with certain criminal convictions from being employed for a position,

2) the position is designated by the employer for participation in a program to encourage the employment of individuals with criminal records,

3) and the employer is required by law to conduct a criminal background check for the position.

Enforcement would be by the Department of Labor with fines and penalties set forth in the bill.  The bill states that it does not establish a private right of action, does not create a protected class under the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act (“CADA”), and that a violation cannot be used as evidence of a CADA violation.

On January 29, 2019, the House Committee on Judiciary amended the bill and referred it to Appropriations.  In light of the democratic control of both houses of the Legislature and the Democratic Governor, this bill is likely to become law. 


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