© 2021
background_fid.jpg
In touch with the world ... at home on the High Plains
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Colyer Adds Kansas To The List Of States Supporting 'Ban The Box'

The order signed Wednesday by Gov. Colyer will prevent state agencies from requiring people seeking jobs to disclose on their applications whether they've been convicted of a crime.
Stephen Koranda
/
Kansas News Service
The order signed Wednesday by Gov. Colyer will prevent state agencies from requiring people seeking jobs to disclose on their applications whether they've been convicted of a crime.

Gov. Jeff Colyer signed an executive order Wednesday supporting the "Ban the Box" initiative.

The new order requires state agencies to remove a checkbox from their job applications that asks whether someone has a criminal record.

Colyer says the goal of the order is to help formerly incarcerated people find work.

Durell Gilmore, an activist with Wichita's Sunflower Community Action.
Credit Courtesy photo
/
Durell Gilmore, an activist with Wichita's Sunflower Community Action.

He says the state's overall recidivism rate is nearly 36 percent — with the rate dropping almost in half among those employed.

"We can clearly see that, given the time and opportunity, those offenders who have jobs lead better lives and become a full member of our community," Colyer says.

Durell Gilmore, an activist with Wichita's Sunflower Community Action, says the decision removes an employment barrier.

"It fulfills that social contract that once I've paid my debt to society, I can return to society and build a life for myself and my family," Gilmore says.

The executive order will still allow state agencies to ask applicants about their criminal history during an interview.

--

Carla Eckels is director of cultural diversity and the host of Soulsations. Follow her on Twitter @Eckels.

To contact KMUW News or to send in a news tip, reach us at news@kmuw.org.

Copyright 2018 KMUW | NPR for Wichita

Carla Eckels is Director of Cultural Diversity for News and Engagement at KMUW. She has been an award-winning announcer and news producer for KMUW since 1996. Carla also produces and hosts the R&B and gospel show Soulsationsthat airs Sundays at 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. She annually emcees Gospelfest at the Wichita River Festival and was voted Best Disc Jockey by subscribers of The Community Voice. Prior to coming to KMUW, Carla was the local host for NPR’s Morning Editionat WYSO in Yellow Springs, Ohio, and co-hosted a nationally syndicated gospel radio show in Cincinnati. Carla was also program director for KIBN, the Inspirational Black Network in Wichita, hosted the Joyful Sounds gospel show on Q92-FM and produced the number one gospel radio show on KSJM 107.9 JAMZ from 2004 to 2007.