You can get a job as a lawyer in America.
Law firms and other legal services firms in the US are being forced to hire people with criminal records, a trend that has been exacerbated by President Trump’s recent executive order barring immigration from countries with civil strife and terrorism.
The hiring ban has forced law firms to make tough calls about their hiring practices and, according to a recent report from the New York Times, some law firms have begun to recruit candidates without their criminal records in mind.
The Times reported that in 2017, some legal aid attorneys said they were recruiting candidates with a criminal history solely for the “lack of a background check.”
They said they felt they needed to hire someone with criminal history in order to ensure that they were not recruiting people with a background that would make them vulnerable to bias or discrimination.
But the Times said that legal aid groups were doing the best they could, and that the hiring ban was making them uncomfortable.
“There’s no question that there are legal aid jobs out there, and they’re being hired,” said Michael Schreiber, who heads the National Association of Legal Aid Directors, in an interview with NPR.
Schreiber said that while he was aware of the hiring freeze, he wasn’t surprised.
“The hiring freeze is really a tool of control,” he said.
“It’s a tool to control who gets hired and who doesn’t.”
A recent study by the Brennan Center for Justice, a nonprofit think tank, found that in the first three months of the year, law firms hired a total of 3,724 immigrants with criminal histories, up from 2,534 in 2016.
The Brennan Center’s report also found that fewer than 1% of law firms reported hiring a candidate with a history of convictions in their hiring history.
The numbers were even lower when it came to hiring practices: Only 5% of firms had hired a candidate on the basis of criminal records.
Schneider said the hiring freezes have been going on for several years.
The Brennan study said that “a large proportion of the legal aid organizations are not reporting hiring data to their local or state government,” which “can lead to inaccurate hiring estimates, and can cause a substantial delay in hiring and recruiting candidates, particularly those with criminal backgrounds.”
The New York State Bar Association said that in 2018, it was the first time it had seen a spike in the number of legal aid hires, and the number dropped sharply when the hiring restrictions were lifted.
The New Jersey Bar Association reported that from February 2017 to July 2018, the number for legal aid lawyers with criminal convictions jumped to 3,924, from 2 of 4,852 legal aid attorney hires.
The association’s president, Stephen D. S. Laskin, said in a statement that the number had declined to 3 of 6,000 in 2020.
The Trump administration has also ordered agencies to do more to recruit and retain lawyers who have criminal records from around the country, such as immigrants with a felony conviction, which is a violation of the federal Fair Housing Act, as well as federal civil rights laws.
In June, the Trump administration ordered the Department of Justice to take action against firms that failed to hire legal aid workers who had convictions for criminal offenses.
The Justice Department announced a rule that would require hiring organizations to identify the crimes committed against them and include the crimes as a separate felony conviction on a hiring application, and to conduct background checks on the applicants.
The Department of Homeland Security said it was also taking action against the law firms that have failed to meet the hiring requirements.
The agency said in September that it had started requiring the hiring of criminal history information on applications.
In a statement, the Justice Department said it had been “reviewing” the rule, but that it “will not be required to implement it.”