10 Appalachian J.L. 145 (2010-2011)
Negligent Hiring Liability: A Look at How It Affects Employers and the Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Ex-Offenders

handle is hein.journals/appalwj10 and id is 157 raw text is: NEGLIGENT HIRING LIABILITY: A LOOK AT HOW IT
AFFECTS EMPLOYERS AND THE REHABILITATION
AND REINTEGRATION OF EX-OFFENDERS
Stephen P Shepardt
I. INTRODUCTION
America is often thought of as the land of equal opportunity.' Many
Americans believe that hard work and ambition lead to the American
Dream,2 or the ability of individuals and families to move up the income
ladder over their lifetime and across generations.' And yet, historically,
there are groups of Americans who have been denied the opportunity to
fully realize the American Dream and who continue to be denied that
opportunity to this day.4 Former criminal offenders, or ex-offenders,
are arguably one such group.' Moreover, ex-offenders comprise a large
and rapidly growing portion of the United States population.' According
to one estimate, more than 1 out of every 100 American adults is presently
incarcerated.! In 2009, there were 729,295 offenders released from federal
t J.D. Candidate, Appalachian School of Law, 2012; B.A., Criminology, Cabrini
College, 2009. I would like to thank my family for supporting me, Adam for believing in me,
Dr. Jeffrey Gingerich for inspiring me, and Thomas Golembeski for encouraging me.
1. See generally U.S. Equal Empl. Opportunity Coimn., About the EEOC: Overview,
http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/ (last accessed Jan.17, 2011) (Our vision [is] a strong and
prosperous nation secured through a fair and inclusive workplace.).
2. See generally Jim Cullen, The American Dream: A Short History of an Idea that Shaped a
Nation (Oxford U. Press, Inc. 2003) (noting that there have been many different
interpretations of the American Dream over the course of history).
3. Pew Charitable Trusts, Collateral Costs: Incarceration's Effect on Economic Mobility, 3
(2010) (available athttp://www.pewtrusts.org/uploadedFiles/wwwpewtrustsorg/Reports/
EconomicMobility/Collateral%2Costs%20FINAL.pdf) (Sept. 28, 2010) (Americans
believe that economic success is determined by individual efforts and attributes, like hard
work and ambition, and that anyone should be able to improve his or her economic
circumstances.).
4. See generally U.S. Equal Empl. Opportunity Commn., Charge Statistics, http://eeoc.
gov/eeoc/statistics/enforcement/charges.cfm (last accessed Jan. 17, 2011) (a total of 99,922
charges of discrimination were filed with the EEOC in 2010, including charges of
discrimination based on race, sex, national origin, religion, age, and disability).
5. See generally Pew Charitable Trusts, supra n. 3, at 3 (finding that former inmates
work fewer weeks each year, earn less money and have limited upward mobility).
6. Heather C. West, WilliamJ. Sabol & SarahJ. Greenman, U.S. Dept. ofJust., Bureau
of Just. Statistics, Prisoners in 2009, 1 (Dec. 2010) (available at http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/
content/pub/pdf/p09.pdf) (data indicate that the U.S. prison population has grown every
year since 2000).
7. Pew Charitable Trusts, supra n. 3, at 3.

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