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Ban the Box legislation OK’d

Rochester City Council on Tuesday evening unanimously approved legislation that would require the city of Rochester, its vendors and any employer in the city to eliminate the box that asks job applicants if they have been convicted of a crime.

Supporters of the legislation, introduced by Councilman Adam McFadden, say the law opens the door for people to find work while also helping to reduce recidivism rates. The legislation does allow a prospective employer to consider an applicant’s past convictions after an employment application is submitted and after an initial employment review.

The law would take effect 180 days after adoption.

Penalties include $500 for the first violation. Each subsequent violation could result in a $1,000 fine.