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Two Studies Claim Ban the Box Policies May Have Unintended Consequences

Two studies on “Ban the Box” policies  – one by The Brookings Institution and the other by the University of Chicago – claim that these well intentioned laws meant to help ex-offenders re-enter the workforce may have the unintended consequence of causing more harm than good for minority job seekers. The Brookings Institution study measured the effects of Ban the Box policies on the employment of young and low-skilled men and found African-American and Hispanic men without college degrees were “significantly less likely” to be employed after Ban the Box policies were implemented. This unintended consequence of Ban the Box policies run counter to reducing racial disparities in employment. The University of Chicago study found that before any Ban the Box policies took effect that white job applicants were only slightly more likely to receive a call back from an employer for jobs than black job applicants. However, after Ban the Box policies were implemented, white job applicants were four times more likely to receive a call back from an employer for employment than black job applicants.
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