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(Afro) — The box next to the question on job applications that asks whether a person has ever been convicted of a felony could soon become a thing of the past under a measure proposed by a Washington, D.C. councilman and supported by advocates for ex-offenders.

With few exceptions, the bill—introduced by D.C. Councilman Harry Thomas Jr.—would preclude the city from asking about or considering the criminal record of an applicant for a D.C. city job until the applicant has been selected for an interview.

The local effort is part of a broader initiative to “ban the box” that is gaining acceptance in a growing number of municipalities and states, according to the National Employment Law Project, one of several organizations pushing for an end to the use of criminal records in the initial stage of the hiring process.

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