fresh voices from the front lines of change







A recent survey of online job sites has shown that continues to post numerous new ads that discriminate against unemployed job-seekers.

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The latest examples appear two months after the National Employment Law Project (NELP) released a report detailing similarly exclusionary job postings this spring.  Since then, federal legislation has been introduced that would ban hiring practices, including job ads, that discriminate against unemployed workers by excluding them from consideration for employment opportunities.  As these harmful practices have attracted growing attention, one leading job site -- -- recently announced it would no longer post such exclusionary ads.

President Obama has recently said he backs legislation to end such discriminatory practices that serve to lock-out unemployed job-seekers from job opportunities, and has included such a federal ban in the proposed American Jobs Act.

In the last month, however, has continued to post new ads like this one for a Medical Pharma Sales Rep in La Crosse, Wisconsin, which not only says applicants "MUST BE CURRENTLY EMPLOYED" -- it also says:


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Click on the image to see the full pdf version

Reminds me of "No soup for you!"  But I digress.

Another recent example is this September 5 posting for Restaurant Managers Upscale AGM Needed!! in Louisville, Kentucky.  To qualify -- you guessed it -- you "must be currently employed."

Then there's this job posting from September 16 for a Corrugated Packing sales rep in Lima, Ohio which requires applicants to be "currently employed within the Distribution Packaging Jan/san industry."

And then there's this ad on from The Porter Group, posted September 15, looking for a Sales Executive for an interesting firm:


Nice, huh?  Oh, well, that probably wasn't something you'd enjoy anyway.

How about the food service industry or the restaurant business?  Take a look at this posting from last month from Martin Recruiting Partners for Kitchen Managers in Atlanta, Georgia.  Among the required qualifications it says you must be "currently working with a quick casual or full service restaurant manager background."

Sometimes, a limited acceptable duration of unemployment is specified, as in this Restaurant Management, Long Island, NY posting from Gecko Hospitality last month which specifies candidates "must be currently employed or not out of the restaurant business for more than 3 months."

Enough already.  This has to stop.  And it's not just these pernicious ads -- it's the full range exclusionary practices that discriminate against unemployed job-seekers.  If employers, recruiters, staffing firms and online job posting sites like and will not voluntarily do the right thing and end the lockout against unemployed workers in the job market  -- as has taken steps to do -- then new federal legislation is clearly needed.

Today the National Employment Law Project joined Reps. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., and Hank Johnson, D-Ga.; and Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., to receive 250,000 petition signatures calling for an end to hiring policies that discriminate against the unemployed, and to call for passage of the Fair Employment Opportunity Act. The bill, also included in President Obama’s American Jobs Act, would prohibit exclusion of the unemployed from job openings. The petition signatures were gathered by USAction,, and CREDO Action and represent Americans from across the country.

Call your U.S. representative and senators and tell them to support and pass the Fair Employment Opportunity Act to end hiring discrimination against unemployed workers.

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