So I might have nervously and ruefully broke the law. “Facing a wave of employee theft,” the Times reports, “retailers across the country have helped amass vast databases of workers accused of stealing and are using that information to keep employees from working again in the industry.”, Note that right there: “accused of.” Not “convicted of.” Not “charged with.” Now carry on: “The repositories of information … often contain scant details about suspected thefts and routinely do not involve criminal charges. The Federal Trade Commission is examining whether it is too difficult for retail employees to correct inaccurate information stored in retail-theft databases. 20. Now Goode can’t get a job in retail because potential employers, who pay to access that database, see that she has been accused of theft. dj31488, Jun 7, 2010. dj31488, Jun 7, 2010 #14. The New York Times has a front-page investigation into this massive database, called Esteem. As time passed with no word about the investigation, Goodman applied for unemployment compensation – an application that was unopposed by Dollar General, she says. May 19, 2009, 01:25 PM. Facing a wave of employee theft, retailers across the country have helped amass vast databases of workers accused of stealing and are using them to keep employees from working again Posted by 1 year ago. Since this has just happened, I want to be smart and prevent this from showing up on any records outside of Rite … These COVID-adjacent films provide a clear-eyed view of the pandemic—and ourselves, Anti-feminism, pro-Gamergate videos from ‘Hogwarts Legacy’ lead designer resurface, Woody Allen and Soon-Yi Previn call HBO docuseries a ‘shoddy hit piece’. If I was caught, my name would probably have been entered into a gigantic private database, and I would never have worked in retail ever again. I have had 2 jobs since then (Grocery store-3 years) (Sams club-8 months). “Had she, in fact, been discharged for committing a theft … Dollar General would not have been liable for her unemployment compensation,” according to the complaint. The repositories of information, like First Advantage Corporation’s Esteem database, often contain scant details about suspected thefts and routinely do not involve … Still, the information can be enough to scuttle a job candidate’s chances.”. LexisNexis Settles Esteem Retail Theft Database Class Action Lawsuit Posted By on December 7, 2015 at 11:14 am LexisNexis Risk Solutions Inc. has agreed to settle a class action lawsuit alleging its Esteem “retail theft contributory database” wrongfully labels job seekers as criminals even if they have not been convicted of a crime. The database … This was an innocent and honest mistake. It's owned and controlled by ChoicePoint, a credit bureau. The class claims that LexisNexis has “a contractual quid pro quo” arrangement whereby in exchange for database access to vet job applicants, “Esteem subscribers are required to ‘contribute’ new records of theft incidents involving their own employees or customers.” Under Esteem’s “Rules of Participation,” terminations resulting from “a company loss not strictly related to theft or fraud … should not get reported,” the complaint states. My first job was in retail. Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window). CVS has been blackballing people from the entire profession by putting them on the "Esteem" list for minor mistakes. Or whatever the text in some tiny blinking box says she did that has rendered her permanently untrustworthy. Keller Grover is investigating the use of LexisNexis’s “Esteem” retail theft contributory database by employers in California. Named plaintiff Keesha Goode says that after she lost her job as a cashier at a mall in October 2008, she applied for a position with Family Dollar Stores, an Esteem subscriber, in May 2009. I too should have been deemed a menace to the retail industry and ineligible for any future job. In the last year, the nature of the lawsuits has changed, too, as lawyers try to build class-action cases. Messages: 1,902 Likes … LexisNexis agreed last week to pay $13.5 million to settle a class-action suit on behalf of 31,000 people … article wrote:Since the recession, lawsuits have proliferated against the companies that operate retail theft databases, like LexisNexis, which owned Esteem until this year, HireRight and GIS, according to a review of court records.In the last year, the nature of the lawsuits has changed, too, as lawyers try to build class-action cases. At one of my previous jobs loss prevention accused me of helping my "friends" steal. What I did as a seventeen year-old was way worse than either. Among the accusations, the agency said that some records were inaccurate and that the company made it too difficult for consumers to dispute claims. Employers who use retail theft databases to make hiring, promotion or retention decisions also run the risk of inspiring a federal disparate impact claim and possibly drawing the … … The repositories of information, like First Advantage Corporation’s Esteem database… They are represented by Irv Ackelsberg with Langer Grogan & Diver in Philadelphia. They were threatening to have me arrested so I signed the agreement to pay them back, I paid all the money back. Jun 7, 2010 #15. thelawjournal New Member. Among the accusations, the agency says that some records were inaccurate and that the firm made it too difficult for consumers to dispute claims. But the class claims: “Defendant has not adopted any Rule of Participation that further defines the kinds of incidents that should be reported, nor has defendant issued any guidance or directive to Esteem subscribers, or provided any training to subscribers, designed to ensure that terminations for non-fraudulent reasons or for violations of policies not strictly related to theft or fraud are kept out of the Esteem database.” Included in an Esteem entry is an image of a purported “signed admission statement” by the accused employee. The problem, the plaintiffs say, is that LexisNexis doesn’t “impose on members any rules, procedures or criteria regarding what constitutes an ‘admission,’ how admissions may be obtained, the form of admission statements, or what, if anything, employees signing an ‘admission statement’ must be informed of about Esteem or the purpose of the statement.” The class adds: “And, where the statement refers to circumstances that could be interpreted as something other than a theft, defendant does not require the contributing member to furnish any clarifying information and, instead, resolves all doubt in favor of the contributing member.” LexisNexis styles the supposed admission a “verified admission statement,” but the company does not do its due diligence to investigate or verify it, the class claims. The database “helps organizations identify applicants with history of theft or fraud,” and some of the nation’s largest retailers subscribe, including Rite Aid, CVS, Target and Home Depot, according to the complaint. Compl. “After she was fired, plaintiff received a computer-generated Pre-Adverse Action Notice” telling her that a consumer report received by Esteem subscriber Rite-Aid “may adversely affect your employment status with Rite Aid Corporation,” Goodman says. The Times story continued: "Since the recession, lawsuits have proliferated against the companies that operate retail theft databases, like LexisNexis, which owned Esteem until this year, HireRight and GIS, according to a review of court records. Some of the employees, who submit written statements after being questioned by store security officers, have no idea … They had them on camera and since I was an assistant manager they said that I HAD to have helped them. The Retail Theft Database An Overview Inventory shrinkage is one of the most important issues facing the retail industry. They don’t have that luxury. She received a “Pre-Adverse Action Notice” supposedly from Family Dollar Stores, claiming a background check had yielded information on her that could hurt her chance for the job, Goode claims. For me, a privileged, middle-class college-bound white kid, that wouldn’t have been the end of the world. And the fact that they can be blacklisted from a job by a dumb transgression when they were a teenager—or, as we’ve seen for doing nothing at all—is disturbing. Let me … The repositories of information, like First Advantage Corporation’s Esteem database, often contain scant details about suspected thefts and routinely do not involve criminal charges. I applied for CVS . settled charges with HireRight, which provides a retail-theft database along with other types of screenings. Esteem was a membership program offered to LexisNexis’s customers in the retail business. That adjudication is “a critical step in an employment decision,” and therefore LexisNexis “is itself taking adverse actions with regards to employment applications before it mails out the required Pre-Adverse Action Notice,” according to the complaint. CVS abusing Esteem database as an anti competitive tactic? As a wild and fun-lovin’ deeply insecure teenager, I may or may not have let an acquaintance of mine, one that I evidently wanted to impress, talk me into giving him a heavy discount on a new video game. I never went to court and was never … She says she did no such thing, but was coerced into signing an admission form by management under threat of legal action—she was fired, and her name went into the database. I want to make sure this does not go on the ESTEEM database or is shared with any external companies outside of Rite Aid. Goode says she never got the job with Family Dollar Stores, and “still has not been provided a copy of the so-called ‘admission statement’ being maintained by defendant in its Esteem system,” which she has a right to dispute. From what I understand is that the retail theft database is a private (not public like criminal records) database created by a group of retailers and that any retail store that is a subscriber can see the retail theft database. The database allows retail employers to submit internal records of theft, fraud, and shoplifting to LexisNexis to be shared with other participating retail employers. Facing a wave of employee theft, retailers across the country have helped amass vast databases of workers accused of stealing and are using that information to keep employees from working again in the industry. Screenshot via Brazil | By Brian Merchant. '” (Brackets in complaint.) 4. Close. But millions of people depend on retail jobs to pay the rent and put food on the table. Goodman says she was approved for the benefits, and eventually went to work as a cashier for Rite Aid, but after more than 3 years at that job, she was fired after she applied for a promotion to supervisor. LexisNexis agreed last week to pay $13.5 million to settle a class-action suit on behalf of … When an employer makes an inquiry in Esteem about a job applicant, the LexisNexis Risk & Information Analytics Group is prompted to verify whether the applicant exists in the database, and then “adjudicates” the inquiry, labeling the individual as a “non-competitive” applicant if a match is found, the plaintiffs say. I could always find other summer jobs—I was a privileged white kid, after all. 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