Pre Employment Requirement

Introduction

The Campus Security Enhancement Act (110 ILCS 12/5) mandates that public institutions of higher education identify “security-sensitive positions” and provide for criminal background investigations prior to employing individuals in those positions.  Pursuant to authorization of the President, effective September 1, 2011, pre-employment background investigations will be conducted for all faculty, administrator, civil service, and temporary positions at Chicago State University (CSU).  This requirement extends to all security and non-security sensitive positions, but does not include graduate assistantships and student employment positions unless they have previously been designated as security sensitive. 

Pursuant to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (15 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq.), Employee Credit Privacy Act (820 ILCS 70/1 et seq.), and the Campus Security Enhancement Act (110 ILCS 12/1 et seq.), the following procedures have been implemented to ensure compliance in the attainment, disclosure, and utilization of information as a result of conducting a pre-employment criminal background investigation as a pre-requisite for employment at Chicago State University (CSU).

General Information

This policy is intended to help the University protect its interests and the well-being of its students, staff, faculty, and the public. This policy establishes parameters for criminal history and related background checks on individuals who are offered employment at the University. Convictions or other issues disclosed or discovered in the employment process may influence the selection of the applicant. Likewise, failure to be forthcoming about criminal history or any misrepresentation of education or work history may also influence the selection of the applicant.

Policy Coverage

The coverage of this policy extends to all faculty, supportive professional staff, civil service, and extra help positions. It also extends to all graduate assistant, student employment, and volunteer positions designated as security sensitive. Security sensitive positions include work responsibilities as defined below:

  • The care and supervision of minor children.
  • The safety of students, employees, or the general public.
  • Significant expenditures or control of university financial resources.
  • Access to confidential records.
  • Access to secure rooms (individual offices, locker rooms, storage facilities, and campus living quarters).
  • Cash handling.
  • Positions Requiring a Commercial Drivers License (CDL)

 

Process

All potential applicants shall be notified that an offer of employment is subject to a criminal background investigation or other pre-employment inquiry.  Such notification will be provided as early in the recruitment process as is feasible, generally within the notice of job opportunity.  These criminal background investigations will be conducted and reports provided by a service selected by the University.  Candidates that have received all approvals for hire will be notified by the Office of Human Resources. Offers of employment subject to this criminal background investigation policy will contain a criminal background investigation contingency (contained in the standard offer letter template) when extended.  Departments are not authorized to allow candidates to work prior to notification from the Officer of Human Resources, informing them that: (1)  a signed condition of employment letter has been received,  (2) the candidate has signed all consent forms, (3) the criminal background check has been submitted, and (4) the candidate has completed all pre-employment documentation.

Candidates who are extended a conditional offer of employment must:

  • Understand your appointment is contingent upon successful completion of a background check through CertifiedBackground. (http://www.certifiedbackground.com)
  • Input package code CU35 in the Place Order section on the home screen and follow all steps as indicated.
  • Pay a $41 fee to cover the cost of processing.   This will require the Candidate to pay via credit card.
  • Understand we reserve the right to end our employment agreement with you should the results of  your background investigation not be successful.

 

What pre-employment documents are needed for this process?

Policy Provisions

When are background checks required?

Does a background check include checking into a person’s credit history?

Who will have access to the background check results?

How will the University protect an individual’s privacy?

Where will background check information be maintained?

Can employees be hired before the background check has cleared?

Does a criminal conviction automatically preclude an applicant from employment?

Are there any exceptions to the criminal background check?

When are background checks required?

Background checks are required for any new staff member hired.  The University reserves the right to perform background checks for other positions and/or under other circumstances.

Does a background check include checking into a person’s credit history?

Generally, no. However, some positions, such as financial positions, may require additional background checks, including checking into a person’s credit history.

Who will have access to the background check results?

Human Resources will retain the results of background checks. If there are no criminal convictions or other issues revealed in the background check, Human Resources will notify the department that the hire is complete. If there are criminal convictions or other issues revealed in the background check, a background check committee will review the results and collectively make a final determination regarding the suitability of the candidate for the specific position.

How will the University protect an individual’s privacy?

Human Resources will serve as the Office of Record for all background check results and will strive to maintain confidentiality. Departments will not receive any details of a background check, except as otherwise contemplated by this policy. The University policy prohibits University employees and others from seeking out, using, or disclosing background check information except within the scope of their assigned duties and this policy, and/or as allowed by applicable laws.

Where will background check information be maintained?

If the individual is hired as an employee, the background check results will be filed in and become a permanent part of the employee’s personnel file in Human Resources.  If the individual is not hired as an employee, the background check results will be maintained with the individual’s application in Human Resources.

Can employees be hired before the background check has cleared?

An offer can be extended with the understanding that actual employment is dependent upon acceptable results with respect to the background check.

Does a criminal conviction automatically preclude an applicant from employment?

No. If there is a criminal conviction or other issue revealed in the background check, the Background Check Committee will review the results and make the final determination regarding the individual’s suitability for employment in the position. In some instances, the Human Resources may recommend additional controls that a department would need to implement before employing a person convicted of a crime or with other issues revealed in the background check. Consideration will be given to many factors, including but not limited to, the specific duties of the position, the number of offenses and circumstances of each, and whether the convictions or other issues were disclosed during the application process.

Are there any exceptions to the criminal background check?

 Appointments may be excluded under the following circumstances:

  • Summer or short-term employment of a student or graduate assistant.
  • Reappointment of an existing extra help employee following a break in service not to exceed ninety (90) days.