ATLANTA, December 8, 2022 — The City of Atlanta recently amended its existing anti-discrimination law to include protections based on both gender identity and the criminal history of job applicants and employees.
Under existing city law, individuals who believe that they have been subject to employment discrimination can file complaints with the Atlanta Human Relations Commission.
With this new amendment, the city added gender expression and criminal history as additional protected characteristics that could give rise to such a complaint.
The amended ordinance still allows employers to make adverse employment decisions based on criminal history status if the criminal history is “related to the position’s responsibilities” pursuant to four factors:
- Whether the person committed the offense
- The nature and gravity of the offense
- The time lapse since the offense
- The nature of the job
This amendment is also generally consistent with the EEOC’s 2012 guidance regarding considering criminal records in employment.
The ordinance does not specify whether it applies only to employers who have an office or facility within the city – or whether it would also apply to employers who are located outside of the city, but who do business within the city.
Typically, when the end of the year approaches, it is a good time for employers who do business in the City of Atlanta (and elsewhere) to review their policies and procedures to ensure they are compliant with the new ordinance. If we can be of service to you, please let us know.