Talent Canada
Talent Canada

News Background Screening
HRPA, Fair Chances Coalition partner to provide resources on hiring workers with a criminal record

Avatar photo

November 2, 2023
By Talent Canada

Photo: Adobe Stock

The Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) and the Fair Chances Coalition (FCC) are partnering to provide resources to HR professionals and workplaces related to police record checks and the hiring of individuals with a criminal record.

“We’re committed to providing our members with the most current and up-to-date tools and resources to perform in their roles as HR leaders, and in their most critical functions of hiring and recruitment,” said Kris Tierney, vice-president, human resources and learning, HRPA. “A commitment to inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility (IDEA) remains our gold standard in shaping the future of work and HR practice in Ontario, and we’re excited to partner with the Fair Chances Coalition to drive that work forward.”

An issue impacting millions of Canadians

The FCC is a growing group of employers and agencies working to reduce the barriers faced by 4 million Canadians. According to the FCC website, one in 9 Canadians has a criminal record.

Having a criminal record reduces the likelihood of landing a job by at least 50%. Additionally, jobseekers with criminal records often won’t apply to certain jobs because they anticipate being automatically rejected. These Canadians — disproportionately from racialized and marginalized communities — hold incredible potential for employers.


Police record checks influence hiring

A recent survey of 445 HR professionals conducted by HRPA presents notable insights about the extent to which police record checks are (or are not) part of their hiring practices and to what extent police record checks influence hiring decisions about candidates. Among the survey’s key highlights:

  • 80% of respondents said that they do require police record checks for employees and job candidates at least some of the time.
  • When asked what level of police record checks their workplace performs under the Police Record Checks Reform Act, 2015 (PRCRA), the majority of respondents said criminal record checks (68%), followed by vulnerable sector checks (50%).
  • 68% said they would hire a candidate with a record depending on the position, while 19% said they require a “clean” record.
  • 19% of respondents said they believe requiring a police record check has impacted their organization’s ability to attract and/or retain employees in the past while 68% said they do not believe it has.
  • 74% of respondents said they are not at all familiar or only somewhat familiar with the evidence and benefits of second chance hiring. Only 8% said they were very or extremely familiar.
  • 61% of respondents said they would be interested in free training and resources to learn more. Some resources requested included:
      • Webinars, case studies and best practices,
      • How to make hiring decisions when someone has a record,
      • Human rights legislation,
      • Privacy controls,
      • Appropriate wording for job postings.

Print this page


Stories continue below