Proposed New Jersey Law Would Penalize Employers For Discriminating Against Unemployed
This law is too broad in that it makes no exception for internal transfer opportunities. As written, it could be interpreted to prohibit efforts to retain existing workers through internal placement.
This law could also be leveraged to downsize higher-paid employees and then hire lower-paid replacements.
I like the basic idea, but when I look at a law, I look for how it could be misunderstood or abused. Ambiguities and generalities are generally bad.
An Act concerning employment discrimination and supplementing Title 34 of the Revised Statutes.
Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:
1. No employer or employer’s agent, representative, or designee shall publish, in print or on the Internet, an advertisement for any job vacancy that contains one or more of the following:
a. Any provision stating or suggesting that the qualifications for a job include current employment;
b. Any provision stating or suggesting that the employer or employer’s agent, representative, or designee will not consider or review an application for employment submitted by any job applicant currently unemployed; or
c. Any provision stating or suggesting that the employer or employer’s agent, representative, or designee will only consider or review applications for employment submitted by job applicants who are currently employed.
2. Any employer who violates this act shall be subject to a civil penalty in an amount not to exceed $5,000 for the first violation and $10,000 for each subsequent violation, collectible by the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development in a summary proceeding pursuant to the “Penalty Enforcement Law of 1999,” P.L.1999, c.274 (C.2A:58-10 et seq.).
3. This act shall take effect immediately.
This bill prohibits an employer or employer’s agent, representative, or designee to publish, in print or on the Internet, an advertisement for any job vacancy that prohibits, announces or suggests that unemployed individuals need not apply for a job vacancy. The bill provides for the imposition of civil penalties, for a violation of the bill, in an amount not to exceed $5,000 for the first violation, or $10,000 for each subsequent violation, collectible by the Commissioner of Labor and Workforce Development.
I worked for a large company for many years, and transferred internally on several occasions. Such transfers promote job stability and reduce training costs, both of which are desirable. If the law stated that external candidates cannot be required to have a current job, then that would be a different story.
Just shuffling people from one company to another does not increase employment. I hope the tax holiday for new hires is limited to hiring the unemployed. There should be an increase in head count involved.
- Mott’s Strike Settled: Workers Returning to Apple Sauce Factory (www.pbs.org/newshour/)
- Ill. Penalizes Employers Who Shortchange Workers (abcnews.go.com)
- Let’s Make It Illegal for Employers to Discriminate Against the Unemployed (uspoverty.change.org)
- This Week In Jobless Discrimination: Unemployed Applicants Might ‘Be Tempted To Steal’ (huffingtonpost.com)
- Equal Employment commission files sex, age discrimination suit against Port Authority (nj.com)
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