Kalamazoo seeks to curb criminal history questions for jobs

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KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) — An updated policy says some businesses that do work with Kalamazoo will be asked to show they don’t discriminate against job applicants if they have a criminal history.

The Kalamazoo Gazette reports businesses seeking to provide more than $25,000 in work to the city are among those covered. Specifically, they’ll have to indicate they don’t have questions about criminal history on initial application forms.

Commissioners voted 6-0 Monday on the proposal.

The proposal’s supporters packed the city commission chambers and hung banners in the chambers that stated, “Why should I be punished my whole life?” ”Thank you city of Kalamazoo” and “Fair Chance for All,” the name of the group pushing for the change.

In 2011, Kalamazoo eliminated a question about felony convictions on applications for city employment.

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