Iowa Trade Association Appeals Judgement Regarding "Ban the Box" Ordinance

Iowa Supreme Court determines which portions of the City of Waterloo's "ban the box" ordinance will remain intact.

In 2019, the City of Waterloo passed a "ban the box" ordinance in an effort to address employment discrimination. The Iowa Association of Business and Industry filed suit against the City immediately after the ordinance passed, contending that it violated state law and was subject to preemption.

In the June 2021 decision, the court affirmed the ordinance's regulation, stating that the law was not preempted. The City regulations prohibits businesses employing more than 15 individuals from making inquiries regarding an applicants' criminal history until a conditional job offer has been extended. However, in this decision, the court separately nullified the ordinance regulation that prohibits businesses from arriving at hiring decisions based exclusively on an applicants' criminal record. The court cited that the provision regulating what employers may consider "preempts some hiring practices, namely, those that amount to terms or conditions of employment."

Posted: July 6, 2021

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