The Progressive Victory You Haven’t Heard Of: NYC’s Ban on Employment Credit Checks
From universal pre-kindergarten to paid sick days, New York City’s fight against inequality has grabbed national headlines. But recently, the nation’s largest city has quietly taken the lead in dismantling a far less obvious barrier to opportunity: the employment credit check. Thanks to a new law, businesses can no longer discriminate against employees and job seekers simply because they’re late paying bills.
This supposed link between credit and employee efficiency isn’t just illogical; it’s demonstrably untrue. Studies find that personal credit history fails to predict worker productivity and doesn’t correlate with workplace performance, even for high-profile positions in a financial-services company. In general, there is little evidence that credit checks are of any value to employers at all. Yet throughout the country, credit checks—and credit-based discrimination—continue.