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School Custodian Dismissed for Prior Conviction

It's a good idea to perform background checks on anyone with access to minors.

Ohio
State:
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Key point. Custodians often may have unsupervised access to minors, and so churches should not overlook them when screening youth and children's workers.

An Ohio court ruled that a school could dismiss a custodian on account of a prior conviction for public indecency, since he was a person having responsibility for the "care, custody, or control" of children. An individual applied for work as a part-time custodian at a public elementary school. He failed to reveal on his employment application that he had been convicted of public indecency some twenty years earlier. The school hired the custodian, subject to a criminal records check mandated by state law. The records check disclosed the prior conviction, and the school terminated the custodian on the basis of a state law specifying that no public school "shall employ a person responsible for the care, custody, or control of a child ...

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Richard R. Hammar is an attorney, CPA and author specializing in legal and tax issues for churches and clergy.

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  • May 1, 1997

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