Changes to the Criminal Record Legislation and More
Since Bill C-23A was introduced in Parliament in 2010, there have been a lot of changes to pardons and criminal records legislation. How does that affect you? Here are the statistics:
- Every 1 in 5 Canadians currently has a criminal record.
- Most employers require criminal record checks before hiring.
- Colleges and Universities require criminal record checks before accepting students.
- Volunteer organizations require criminal record checks before they will allow anyone to volunteer.
- All institutes and organizations for doctors, nurses, surgeons and psychologists require criminal record checks before they will license any candidate.
In 2010, the RCMP came out with a few changes that have made criminal record checks much slower, harder to get and not as accessible.
- July, 2010 – RCMP added new policy regarding criminal record checks to further protect the public from sex offenders. New policy states that if anyone’s birth date and sex is the same as a registered sex offender, they will have to submit their fingerprints for a more detailed check. (Before October 8, fingerprints were only required if the surname, birth date and sex matched.)
- August 4, 2010 – Minister of Public Safety issued a new directive to the RCMP regarding the release of criminal record information. This resulted in a new policy concerning criminal record checks for employers: If an individual’s name, date of birth and declared information match a criminal record in the CPIC database, the information may be reported as a possible match to a registered criminal record.
- October 8, 2010 – RCMP changed criminal record check policy to prevent police stations from processing criminal record checks for individuals outside of their municipality.
- December 1, 2010 – RCMP changed criminal record check legislation to prevent 3rd party agencies from providing criminal record checks for individuals.
- December 8, 2010 – RCMP changed criminal record check legislation to prevent 3rd party agencies from providing criminal record checks for individuals for employers and volunteer agencies.
- February 1, 2011 – RCMP announced that criminal record checks that are employment related will increase from $25 to $50.
What is the impact from these changes? Employers are not waiting a few months for a criminal record check to come back; they are moving on to other applicants in the interest of saving time and money. Several companies have gone out of business because of the December 2010 changes in legislation. Also, many people do not like having to give their fingerprints to the police. These new policy and legislation changes are creating more work, taking more time and money, and these issues are causing problems for people like you: people who are seeking employment.
What can you do about it? If you know you have charges on your record, the best thing to do would be to get a pardon. Once you have one, you can truthfully tell an employer or anyone else that you do not have a criminal record. This will help in finding and keeping a job. You can also do your research and find out if the companies you are applying to require criminal record checks. Most smaller businesses do not, but most large companies do.
This article is published courtesy of Canadian Pardons. The main office, located in Toronto at 206 Spadina Avenue serves all of Canada in helping people get pardons, waivers and clearing criminal records. Our Calgary office is located at 840-6 Avenue Road South West, Suite 300. Call us at: 1-800-298-5520 or visit our website at: http://www.canadianpardons.ca/
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