No Woman No Crime: Ban the Box, Employment, and Upskilling

38 Pages Posted: 23 May 2016  

Daniel Shoag

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Stan Veuger

American Enterprise Institute (AEI)

Date Written: March 29, 2016

Abstract

A sizable number of localities have in recent years limited the use of criminal background checks in hiring decisions, or "banned the box." Using LEHD Origin-Destination Employment and American Community Survey data, we show that these bans increased employment of residents in high-crime neighborhoods by as much as 4%. These increases are particularly large in the public sector. At the same time, we establish using job postings data that employers respond to ban-the-box measures by raising experience requirements. A perhaps unintended consequence of this is that women, who are less likely to be convicted of crimes, see their employment opportunities reduced.

Keywords: Labor Economics, Unemployment

Suggested Citation

Shoag, Daniel and Veuger, Stan, No Woman No Crime: Ban the Box, Employment, and Upskilling (March 29, 2016). HKS Working Paper No. 16-015. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2782599

Daniel Shoag (Contact Author)

Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS) ( email )

79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Stan Veuger

American Enterprise Institute (AEI) ( email )

1150 17th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20036
United States

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