Background Checks Disqualify Drivers

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Background Checks Disqualify Drivers

The new background checks in Massachusetts have banned over 8000 Uber and Lyft drivers off the street, this is all because of the new stringent state law on background checks. Both Uber and Lyft agreed in November to allow the state to run its own background checks and the companies would receive in exchange they could service passengers to and from Logan Airport in Boston.

Both these companies’ standard policies include background checks that went, as far back as seven years, this was never enough for lawmakers in Massachusetts. They believed these background checks were to include the driver’s lifetime inclusive of all drivers who had any kind of “continuance without finding” on their record. This “continuance without finding” is a plea that allows for defendants to avoid convictions on their records.

70 000 drivers who applied for checks which began in January which resulted in over 10 % of said drivers failing the background checks. About 1500 drivers were rejected due to charges of violent crimes. Some were also rejected by state for being sex offenders. Drivers who were convicted with a felon, various traffic offenses or sexual abuse also faces denial from the state. All in all criminals were rejected, therefore one could argue that the regulations in place were successful.

According to the Boston Globe however, common reasons for the driver’s rejection involved their license statuses. Their licenses were either suspended or not enough driving experience. Supporters of the law are pleased with this new law as it ensures their safety by ensuring that unsafe drivers are banned. Some citizens argue that this law prevents law-abiding citizens from making a living.

Attorney Pailine Quirion has heard from several citizens that have criminal backgrounds who wish to re-enter the workforce who have been disqualified for minor offenses that had occurred years ago. He is of the belief that someone who abused drugs for 20 years or someone who had been convicted of violence should not be disqualified from being a driver.

An example of this is Erik Scott who was denied being a Uber driver for failing a background check for a street fight in 1990. The continuation without finding alone was enough for him to be denied by the state. He believed the state’s view is accurate however if a case had been dismissed a driver should then be allowed to earn a living.

Although he tried to repeal the state’s finding, Massachusetts law automatically rejects appeal from drivers with 18 of the disqualifying events om their records. Uber was quick to voice its displeasure with the results as they believed the screening process was unfair. They were of the view that the screening included unfair and unjust indefinite look back period that resulted in thousands of people in Massachusetts kissing their economic opportunities.

There are Public hearings on the rule that have been scheduled for May as the companies have a 2019 deadline to comply with the law. Massachusetts Governor Charlie baker states there was a set national standard for drivers safety and that he was optimistic for all the future partnerships with Uber, Lyft and any other new companies. For background screening contact United Screening.