Networkplace Encourages Business Owners to Get in Front of New Legislation with Take The Pledge

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Business owners can get out in front of pending legislation with Networkplace's Take The Pledge campaign.

Networkplace

Networkplace

Real or not, discrimination can become the perception to these individuals. It will be up to businesses or legislators to change such a perception.

Over two dozen states have pending legislation to prohibit discrimination toward the unemployed either in job advertisements, hiring, or both. Networkplace encourages business owners to be out in front of the legislation and stand with the unemployed with the Take The Pledge campaign.

The legislation is in response to a bias by some employers in hiring. In a July 2011 study by the National Employment Law Project, in a four-week period from March to April 2011 there were over 150 job postings on some of the nation's most prominant job listing websites that included exclusions based on current employment status. What remains unknown, however, is the undocumented instances where discrimination in hiring may exist. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, jobless workers aren't a protected class so the agency doesn't track such complaints.

Long-term unemployment, those who are unemployed more than 26 weeks, is at an all-time high with what is estimated to be over 40% of the unemployed population. Real or not, discrimination can become the perception of these individuals. It will be up to businesses or legislators to change such a perception. Networkplace believes that it's in the best interest of business owners to take that charge.    

In a few states, such as Michigan and Oregon, legislation is pending that prohibits discrimination in the advertisement of job openings. Opponents argue the bills won't make the unemployed a legally protected class and that free-speech rights could feel the most impact. This type of bill died in the Colorado House in February. New Jersey remains the only state, thus far, with such a law in place. It took effect June 1, 2011.

Several other states hope to make the unemployed a protected class. Supporters of the bill believe it will help end discriminatory hiring practices. Opponents worry that it will only diminish the value of protection already given to other groups. It has also been argued that defining the unemployed could pose difficulty in enforcement of the laws. Some states, such as Iowa, have clearly defined the unemployed in their house bill.

Formed in July 2011, Networkplace, LLC was founded with the mission of creating communities that work. Working communities not only represent high levels of sustainable employment, but they also characterize a "help your neighbor" commitment. A complement to traditional employment agencies, the company believes that community involvement in the current unemployment crisis may be the key to moving lives in a positive direction.

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Paul Wooderson
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