Liar, Liar, Pants on fire

How’s it going people? Everyone have a good weekend? This week’s topic: DRINK DRIVING

Yes, we’ve all done it, don’t lie, everyone is guilty of it. And for those of you who are saying I’ve never done it, all I can say is “LIAR, LIAR, pants on fire!”

Last Friday night, I was guilty of it. I’d had one full strength beer on an empty stomach, went and did the late night Maccas run, tried to avoid the RBT by going through the back roads (because silly me, listening to the two drunk passengers!!!) and what do you know, there’s an RBT (down the back roads, where apparently they’re never there)

Now when the officer first asks have you had anything to drink, my advice: DON’T LIE!! Lying gets you nowhere, trust me! So I blew into the device, (sometimes I wonder if people run out of breath before they tell you to stop)

“How many beers have you had?” He asked

“Just the one about two hours ago” Was my reply (that’s me being not so honest!)

“You shouldn’t have got behind the wheel Miss, you’re just under, but you still shouldn’t have got behind the wheel.”

“Really”

“Yes, you’ve blown 0.04mg”

One beer on an empty stomach does that make a difference, yes, yes it does!

So people, no matter how little you’ve had DON’T GET BEHIND THE WHEEL, and offer to do the late night Maccas run it’s not worth losing your license, especially when you didn’t order anything for yourself.

Another thing to remember, is that when having a drink on a Sunday afternoon, you do have to go to work on Monday morning, so be aware of how much you consume, because you could possibly be over the limit come Monday morning when it’s time to go to work.

At Employment Screening Australia, they uncover little discretions like drink driving, even if you’re not so honest on your application form. Employers want to know if they’re employees have had DUIs and periods where they’ve had a suspended license, especially if their jobs are to drive trucks, vans or cars, employers have a duty of care towards their workers, to ensure their drivers are safe and not intoxicated during their shift. If I was an employer I’d be on the phone to Employment Screening Australia asking them to check current and future employees. Employment Screening Australia is here to help you get the best out of every employee you have.

Keep smiling people J

Things Employers Should Know About Criminal History Checks

So you’ve decided to introduce mandatory criminal history checks for all new and existing employees. Great idea! Police Checks are a good risk mitigation measure and your insurance broker will give you a gold star. But before you start drafting up your new policies and sending out memos to staff, here are a few things you should know to prevent nasty discrimination claims further down the track.

Employees and applicants should be made aware of their right not to disclose criminal history information subject to Spent Convictions legislation which prohibits the release of criminal history information older than 10 years unless the conviction is directly relevant to a job role involving working with children or vulnerable people or the conviction was serious enough to warrant a lengthy term of imprisonment exceeding 30 months. (I’ll be writing more on spent convictions in the next blog). Advertisements and job information for a vacant position should clearly state whether a police check is a requirement of the position. If so, the material should also state that people with criminal records will not be automatically barred from applying (unless there is a particular requirement under law). Police checks can only be conducted in Australia with the written consent of the job applicant or current employee.

Information about a person’s criminal record must be stored in a secure, private and confidential manner and used only for the purpose for which it is intended. Changes to privacy laws in 2014 will see large penalties applying to anyone not complying with this. The relevance of a job applicant or current employee’s criminal record should be assessed on a case-by-case basis. A criminal record should not generally be an absolute bar to employment but it can be considered an acceptable reason for exclusion if it can be shown that the nature of the offence is linked with the essential requirements of the role. A fraud conviction relating to theft of money through embezzlement would naturally be a good reason to exclude someone from a position handling the company books or cash handling for example.

A good starting point for determining whether a person should be excluded or employed based on a criminal record would be to determine the inherent requirements of the role and the circumstances under which essential duties are carried out. If an employer takes a criminal record into account in making an employment decision, in most cases the employer should give the job applicant or employee a chance to provide further information about their criminal record including, if they wish, details of the conviction or offence, the circumstances surrounding the offence, character references or other information, before determining the appropriate outcome in each case.

If criminal record information is considered relevant, an employer should have a written policy and procedure for the employment of people with a criminal record which can be incorporated into any existing equal opportunity employment policy covering recruitment, employment and termination.If criminal record information is considered relevant, an employer should train all staff involved in recruitment and selection on the workplace policy and procedure when employing someone with a criminal record, including information on relevant anti-discrimination laws. The essential or inherent requirements of a job should be determined prior to advertising the vacancy so that recruiters are better prepared to deal with applications from those with a criminal record. Under the AHRC Act an employer needs to show not only that they have determined what are the inherent requirements of a job, but also that they have considered whether an individual job applicant or employee meets these requirements. For more information go to http://www.humanrights.gov.au/publications/human-rights-record

Please feel free to comment or email me with any questions you might have on this topic at Natalie@employmentscreeningaustralia.com.au