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Poulan, GA is a very small town just to the east of Albany, where the chief of police is in trouble over a background check. The Albany Herald, in a story headlined: “Poulan police chief suspended,” reports the following.
Poulan’s top police official has been suspended after officials say she may have used her power as police chief to snoop on a City Council member. Angie Schlosser has been suspended with pay pending a full investigation into an alleged incident where she ran a background check on Councilman Van Jones, Poulan City Attorney Tommy Coleman said.
I’m sure there are some juicy local political conflicts that play a part in all of this, but there’s also an important point. The point is that background and credit checks are powerful tools to help you hire and promote employees, keep your workforce safe and select tenants wisely, but just like with any powerful tool, you have to use them correctly.
So here are some do’s and don’ts.
Do use criminal background and credit checks as a tool to help you screen out the criminal and the dangerous elements in your applicant pool.
Do use credit checks to cross-verify information and dates on resumes and applications.
Do use all background checking tools in accordance with the law and for legitimate business purposes.
Don’t use these tools for fun, for gossip or for any other purpose that you couldn’t justify to other people in an adversarial setting, like a court.