Over the past two months public dialogue about Ban the Box has increased, spurred on by the Charlotte City Council’s decision to send the issue to the Economic Development Committee. Several local media outlets exposed the issue to a wider audience, and helped Charlotteans begin to understand the importance and details of the proposed ordinance.
Creative Loafing highlighted the contributions of Councilwoman Mayfield and the Civil Right Clinic in getting the City Council to consider the needs of the thousands of Charlotteans who have conviction histories and are looking for work. Councilwoman champions ‘Banning the Box:’ Spearheaded by LaWana Mayfield, job application question regarding prior convictions debated in city committee.
The Charlotte Observer ran an editorial by Civil Rights Clinic member Cleat Walters III, which highlighted the benefits of the ordinance to the City. Banning ‘the box’ eliminates unfair obstacle to jobs
Unfortunately, not all of the stories in the media were accurate. While we all have sympathy for the family and fiance of murder victim Danielle Watson, who was killed during a robbery inside the Flying Biscuit, WBTV’s story highlighting his opposition to Ban the Box “Murder victim’s fiance outraged over bill to remove “felon” question from job application“ fails to identify the fact that the ordinance does not prohibit criminal background checks for job applicants.
Hopefully, Charlotte will follow cities like Richmond that recently enacted a similar ordinance as reported by The Richmond Times-Dispatch. Richmond City Council unanimously passes ‘ban the box’ ordinance.
Ban the Box is slated for discussion during the May 2nd meeting of the Charlotte City Council’s Economic Development Committee. The coalition hopes the meeting room CH-14 in the Government Center will be packed when they consider this important measure at 12pm that day.