- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 16, 2015

URBANA, Ill. (AP) - Faculty members at the University of Illinois campus in Champaign-Urbana plan to vote on a resolution next week that would ask the school’s board of trustees to delay the start of a policy instituting background checks on new hires.

The Senate of the Urbana-Champaign Campus, a group of about 200 faculty members, is scheduled to meet Monday.

The resolution also says the policy doesn’t meet American Association of University Professors standards and isn’t mentioned in all active job postings.

The board of trustees approved the policy last week. It says all prospective faculty and many other University of Illinois job applicants will have to go through background checks. Right now only applicants for jobs in high-security positions require such checks.

Interim Provost Ed Feser says he’s working to balance liability with being fair to job candidates.

“We have a very high rate of incarceration in the United States. Diversity is a significant interest of ours,” Feser told The (Champaign) News-Gazette (https://bit.ly/1Mbudn5 ). “We worked very hard to make sure that we protect the search process as much as we can while meeting that policy directive.”

The university has said it would create a conviction review committee to decide if a conviction is related to the job candidate’s position before deciding on whether to hire. Candidates wouldn’t be automatically barred from hire because of a past conviction and they would be able to defend themselves, the school said.

University human resources officials estimate about 1 percent of hires would have to go through the process.


Information from: The News-Gazette, https://www.news-gazette.com

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