Another Unintended Consequence from “Reform” Legislation

Chicago Tribune columnist Steve Chapman relays another unintended consequence of a “reform” proposal.

This time it is the effort to make it easier for black men who have been incarcerated to get jobs.

On many application forms, there is (was) a box to be checked if one were an ex-con.

The question could be asked, but only after an initial evaluation of a person’s qualifications was completed.

Chapman quotes Pat Quinn from 2014:

“This law will help ensure that people across Illinois get a fair shot to reach their full potential through their skills and qualifications, rather than past history.”

Here’s what Jennifer Doleac, an economics professor at Texas A&M who is affiliated with the University of Chicago Crime Lab, discovered:

“Current evidence suggests that Ban the Box may not increase employment for people with criminal records, and might even reduce it. Delaying information about job applicants’ criminal histories leads employers to statistically discriminate against groups that are more likely to have a recent conviction.”

Chapman observes, “In a triumph of perversity, the people who were supposed to gain ended up worse off.”

University of California at Santa Barbara Ph.D. candidate Ryan Sherrard found the same result.

Chapman writes,

“After such a law is passed, his study found, African American men get fewer job callbacks — and white applicants get more. In places that ban the box, black ex-offenders are likelier to end up back in jail than before.”

Employers assumed the worst about black men, not the best.

Chapman suggests repealing such laws.

“Sometimes the best way to do good is to stop doing harm.”


Another Unintended Consequence from “Reform” Legislation — 6 Comments

  1. Doesn’t this pretty much always happen in unconstitutional affirmative action libtard schemes?

  2. MsTrumpion, how would affirmative action harm minorities?

    One of the most common arguments against affirmative action is that it takes opportunity away from more qualified (often white and Asian) applicants and gives it to less qualified ones (who are often African American, Hispanic, or Native).

  3. It harms minorities because it elevates flat out unqualified minorities

  4. Trib has a paywall and the other link doesn’t work.

    I don’t have numbers, I don’t have time series analyses, I don’t have state by state comparisons, I don’t know what variables were looked at, I don’t have proposed causal explanations, and some of the wording here leaves more questions than answers.

    One thing that came to mind was if more black people are going into interviews because of this law, it seems likely that a higher percentage would be turned down.

    It’s difficult to make any sense of this when the terms are shifted from criminals to black people midway through the article.

    Does this harm criminals or does this harm black people?


    Then what are the effects on white criminals?

  5. Why are these criminals allowed to vote?

    Can you explain that to me Correcting?

  6. Because a lot of people think of voting as a civil rights issue.

    Most states allow felons to get their voting rights back.

    Why should someone not be allowed to vote once they are out of jail?

    They’ve already paid their debt to society.

    That’s the underlying thought process.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *