Criminal Background Checks not Required for Private Non-Profit Employees

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DES MOINES,  Iowa -- A non-profit organization says it's considering changing its criminal background check policy following an incident with an employee.

Akil Jabbar worked with at - risk teens at Creative Visions. He's accused of trying to meet with a  teenage girl for sexual purposes. Creatives Visions did not check his background when hiring him.

Criminal background checks are not required under Iowa law if you work for a private non - profit organization but without one some say it could put the organization at risk. The Iowa Non - Profit Resource Center says it is in the organization's best practice to run background checks on its employees especially if they are planning to work with the needy, elderly or youth. It recommend non - profits have a list of crimes they base their hiring process from.

The Boys and Girls Club of Central Iowa never employed Jabbar or has any ties to Creative Visions but says it conducts drug screening and background checks on all its employees and volunteers.

"We have  a matrix barrier of crimes. It's just black and white. If your background check comes back with any of these of crimes including OWI or theft then there is no place for you here at the Boys and Girls Club," says CEO, Jodie Warth. "I entrust people with the kids every single day and it is up to us to make sure that the people who affect change in their life are making good positive changes and good positive decisions in their own lives."

The Iowa Non - Profit Resource Center says conducting background checks can be expensive. The  Boys and Girls Club of Central Iowa says it costs the organization upwards of $50 for each employees background check and drug screening.


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