INDIANAPOLIS — Governor Eric J. Holcomb today issued Executive Order 17-15 for fair chance hiring policies in Indiana state government. Effective July 1, 2017, initial employment applications for job openings within the executive branch of the State of Indiana will no longer ask applicants if they have been arrested or convicted of a crime.
“This executive order will give Hoosiers with criminal records a second chance by helping them overcome the stigma of their past and live productive lives,” Gov. Holcomb said. “We are giving those with criminal records more opportunity to seek public service as a state employee.”
Currently, state employment applications ask applicants to report if they have been convicted of a crime that has not been expunged or sealed by a court and if they have been arrested for a crime with charges still pending. This disclosure in an initial application can discourage qualified, skilled candidates from applying and may limit the opportunity candidates have to explain their backgrounds.
The state will continue to conduct background checks on applicants before hiring them. Where state law specifically prohibits employment based on certain convictions or pending charges, applicants will be asked about their criminal records (example: application for a family case manager position with the Indiana Department of Child Services).
Governor Holcomb said he would pursue a fair chance hiring policy at the conclusion of the 2017 legislative session.
“While I do not believe governments should dictate employers’ hiring processes, I believe everyone deserves a second chance,” Gov. Holcomb said. “For that reason, the state agencies under my watch will provide those with a criminal record more opportunity to join the workforce.”