Market Overview

Federal Agency Issues Policy To Improve Hiring Conditions For People With Drug Convictions

Federal Agency Issues Policy To Improve Hiring Conditions For People With Drug Convictions

The National Credit Union Administration has adopted a new policy that makes it easier for people with past drug convictions and other simple crimes to be employed by credit unions.

In doing so, the federal agency is making an important statement about federal cannabis legalization and the inclusion of those most affected by the war on drugs. 

Credit Unions And The Cannabis Industry

Since the rise of the legal cannabis industry, credit unions have been strong allies for cannabis businesses.

Given the federal prohibition og the plant, most traditional banking institutions are unwilling to provide banking services to legal cannabis businesses under threat of punishment by federal law.

Although the SAFE Banking Act could eventually revert this situation if passed, cannabis businesses today still have to rely on alternative ways of managing their cash flow.

Credit unions have since become one of the main methods for cannabis companies to obtain financial services.

On Monday, the NCUA, an independent federal agency in charge of overseeing credit unions, issued a new policy that revises the conditions an aspiring worker must meet in order to be employed by a credit unions.

Fixing Some Of The Damage From The War On Drugs

Before the change was made, the agency’s statute forbid anybody with a past criminal offense from “from participating in the affairs of an insured credit union” without the prior written consent of the board.

The NCUA board has now amended the types of offenses that require an application for written consent.

People carrying past convictions involving “insufficient funds checks of aggregate moderate value, small dollar simple theft, false identification, simple drug possession and isolated minor offenses committed by covered persons as young adults” can now directly apply for positions at credit unions as long as they meet hiring criteria.

Those applicants who carry past convictions that don’t meet the categories included in the amendment can still submit an application to the board in order to be considered for a position.

The statement made mention of some of the difficulties that people with non-violent drug possession charges face every day, which include “not only employment bans but the loss of federal financial aid, eviction from public housing, disqualification from occupational licenses, loss of voting rights, and denial of public assistance.”

The board also recognized the inconsistency between the federal prohibition of marijuana and its legality in many states, and the fact that communities of color have been disproportionately affected by drug convictions in their work possibilities.

“Offering second chances to those who are truly penitent is consistent with our nation's shared values of forgiveness and redemption,” the NCUA said. 

Image from Unsplash. 

Posted-In: credit unions NCUA War on DrugsCannabis Government Regulations Markets Best of Benzinga


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