Criminal checks hit roadblocks

Enforcement of RCMP policy leads to delays, ambiguity
By Sarah Dobson
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 05/04/2010

At the end of 2009, the RCMP announced changes that make it harder for employers and background screening companies to determine if a potential hire has a criminal record.

In its Dissemination of Criminal Record Information, the RCMP detailed the process involved with the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC), a computerized information system that provides law enforcement agencies with information on crimes and criminals.

Of particular interest to employers is the fact searches by name and date of birth — commonly used during the hiring process — no longer reveal if an applicant has a criminal record. If such a search reveals a match, the report would come back as incomplete. Confirmation that a criminal record exists for the person requires a fingerprint comparison.