Washington, D.C. – Legislation passed by the Senate today as part of the National Defense Authorization Act would give banks the flexibility to hire more people with minor criminal records. The bill (the Fair Hiring in Banking Act) would amend Section 19 of the Federal Deposit Insurance Act to expand the ability of job candidates with minor prior offenses to work in the banking industry. It will likely be signed into law by the end of the year.
“Banks have supported second-chance hiring for a long time, but statutory restrictions have limited their ability to offer job opportunities to qualified candidates with records,” BPI CEO Greg Baer said. “This legislation will wisely streamline access to those opportunities in a way that benefits both job seekers and the overall economy. We are grateful to Reps. Beatty, Auchincloss and Sessions and Sens. Manchin, Tillis, Coons and Van Hollen for pursuing this meaningful legislative change. With Senate passage today, this provision will soon become law and job seekers will have new opportunities to secure well-paying jobs in the banking industry.”
Background: Section 19 of the FDI Act restricts banks’ ability to hire individuals with prior criminal offenses. The new legislation would streamline banks’ ability to offer second-chance job opportunities for certain candidates, such as those whose prior offenses occurred seven years ago or more. Without such changes to the underlying statute, banks face long regulatory approval processes for hiring candidates with records.
Next steps: The NDAA package is expected to be enacted by the President before the end of 2022.
Bottom line: This bill clears the way for second-chance candidates to access gainful employment in stable, high-quality jobs with fair pay. The banking industry has faced unique restrictions on offering such opportunities in the past, but will soon benefit from greater statutory flexibility.
To learn more about second-chance hiring in banking, see the following links:
- BPI Welcomes House Passage of Second-Chance Hiring Legislation
- Coons, Manchin, Tillis and Van Hollen reintroduce bipartisan Fair Hiring in Banking Act
- BPI Welcomes Bill to Empower Rehabilitated Job Seekers
- Bank Associations Express Support for Fair Hiring in Banking Act
- BPI, FSF Support Bill to Enhance Bank Employment Opportunities for Rehabilitated Job Seekers
- BPI Calls for Expanding Employment Opportunities for Rehabilitated Individuals with Criminal Records
- BPI Calls on Congress to Modernize Section 19 to Increase Opportunities for Justice-Involved Individuals
- BPI Submits Letter to Congress Urging Review and Consideration of Amendments to Section 19 of Federal Deposit Insurance Act
About Bank Policy Institute.
The Bank Policy Institute (BPI) is a nonpartisan public policy, research and advocacy group, representing the nation’s leading banks and their customers. Our members include universal banks, regional banks and the major foreign banks doing business in the United States. Collectively, they employ almost 2 million Americans, make nearly half of the nation’s small business loans, and are an engine for financial innovation and economic growth.