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Criminal Background Checks – How It Is Affecting The Employment Prospects Of Individuals

By Expert Author: Michael Levi

As more and more organizations, schools and other institutions seek the help of criminal background checks Australia before hiring people, the entry of unscrupulous elements into these avenues has dropped sharply. While it is good news in a way because this could deter people from making any felony in view of jeopardizing their future, it also means stopping those who have minor criminal charges against them from entering into the mainstream life.

There has been a lot of discussion on what impact a criminal record might have on the employment opportunities for an individual. There also have been many studies to this effect. Research reiterates the common knowledge that most employers would opt for a person with no past record when presented with such a choice. Also there are certain occupations and professions wherein people with particular criminal records are prohibited by law from indulging. Some good examples of these are working with children, registration as doctors, lawyers, physiotherapist, optometrist and architect.

A person with conviction could also find it difficult to get an occupation license for working in buildings, as security and in real estate. They may not be able to hold top management positions or run for parliament. There are many other jobs that do not lawfully limit companies from hiring people with criminal backgrounds. But as employers perceive that such people could pose a high risk in terms unreliability, irresponsibility, dishonesty and undesirable character, they shirk from employing such people. Another reason for not employing such people is for the fear of other employees and clients reaction if the past record of the employee becomes known.

With no or fewer options of employment, people with backgrounds find it hard to get economic independence through legal ways and often lead to recidivism. Many feel their past hopelessly tarnishes their future and they do not have many chances even if they apply for jobs. Hence it is important that even after conducting criminal background check Australia employers maintain a broader perspective on this issue. The intelligence, reliability and employability of an individual should not be brushed aside purely on the basis of past criminal records. For instance criminal record of an individual could range from simple parking tickets or jumping signals to more serious ones like fraud, burglary and murder (or accessory to murder). It is important for employers to look into the behavioural pattern, familial background and the individual’s personal attitude instead of rejecting such an application outright.

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