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Orange County Moves To 'Ban The Box'

Orange County Human Resources Director Ricardo Daye. Photo: FRRC / YouTube
Orange County Human Resources Director Ricardo Daye. Photo: FRRC / YouTube

Orange County says it will remove a question about criminal history from its initial job application form.  

Orange County Human Resources Director Ricardo Daye said there are a lot of vacancies right now, including positions at the convention center, and in the public works and utilities departments, and the question about criminal history is a deterrent for some job-seekers. 

“We're going to be removing that question from our application, we want to make sure that there's no barrier for people who want to work, who want to be considered for some of these positions that the county wants to bring on and train people and develop skills,”  said Daye.

Daye says the new policy should be in place by October.

The announcement came at a Florida Rights Restoration Coalition press conference where founder Desmond Meade talked about the coalition’s statewide campaign for jobs, housing and voting rights for people who’ve served sentences for felony convictions.

In 2019, the county designated September 10th ‘Desmond Meade Day.’ 

Meade says the coalition is working with other city and county governments to encourage them to support people who are re-entering society after serving prison sentences. 

“There's no better place than in Orlando, to really highlight this, about how we're working with county government and the city of Orlando, as well as Orange County government to really promote second chance hiring, to really promote second chances.”  

Orange County joins 14 other city and county governments statewide, including Orlando and Daytona Beach, in ‘banning the box’ and removing questions about criminal history from initial job application paperwork.