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Catch-22 poses a threat to job seekers

By Faye Mergel
Published: Tuesday, July 27th, 2010

102416451People who are on the lookout for a job and do not have a good credit report backing them are in trouble today. Over 60% of the prospective employers request for a copy of credit report of the candidate and scrutinize it thoroughly before offering them the job. This does not herald good news for people who are currently unemployed. In fact, this only tightens the noose and makes job search even more stressful.

Nobody seems to give a thought to what if the credit report is bad only because the person is not currently employed and hence has no money to pay towards his current dues. This is the famously infamous catch-22 which is proving to be a big hindrance to unemployed people looking out for suitable jobs to stay afloat.

What is surprising is that till date there has been no evidence that co-relates credit report and the performance of a person on the job. The fact that the credit report reflects the person’s performance on the job in nothing short of a myth that has been fuelled by credit bureaus with selfish interests and shortsighted human resource department that use the credit report as an excuse to avoid taking candidates. The irony is that the credit bureaus do accept the fact that there is no conclusive evidence or research that proves co-relation between the two. This just seems to be an exercise to make those extra dollars that can keep their cash registers ticking. Caught between the human resource department and the credit bureaus are the candidates who are facing unfair discrimination.

Since credit reports do not reveal much about the integrity and character of a person they are not the right tools to guage the performance of any person. In fact, if anything, these reports reveal the truth about the tough times that we are facing at the moment. In times like this where unemployment is on the increase, it is unfair to gauge a person on the basis of the credit report. Over the last six months, close of seven million Americans have been living without a job and this only means a lot of defaulters if they don’t land themselves in a job soon. Going by logic, unemployed people who find jobs will prove to be good workers since they will work harder to ensure they stay put on the job.

It is time for the authorities to wake up and take action in order to prevent things from blowing out of control leading to many more problems.

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