Meeting marks beginning of end for DNA

” A faculty senate meeting on Thursday opened the table for discussion on a controversial provision to a University of Akron policy. The provision to the criminal background check, implemented in August, gives the university the right to require DNA testing from potential employees.”

A faculty senate meeting on Thursday opened the table for discussion on a controversial provision to a University of Akron policy.

The provision to the criminal background check, implemented in August, gives the university the right to require DNA testing from potential employees.

The new policy immediately gained nationwide coverage after a UA lecturer resigned mid-semester upon being informed of it.

The university added this to the policy because it feels that it’s the way technology is going in the future and it wants to be prepared, Laura Massie, media relations director for UA, said.

William Rich, vice chairman of Faculty Senate, said that it poses a threat to the personal privacy of university employees.

The university is now willing to remove the references to DNA testing from its criminal background check policy.

This decision follows recent criticism the university has received for adopting a policy that appears to violate federal laws, such as the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act, which will take effect Nov. 21.

The American Association of University Professors and the American Civil Liberties Union both believe that the policy is in violation of GINA.

Mike Brickner of ACLU said he is not aware of any employer in the nation that requires employees to give DNA samples.

It’s just unheard of,” he said.

Ted Mallo, vice president of general counsel, sent a letter to the faculty senate that recommended the wording in the policy should be deleted.

According to Rich, Mallo recommended replacing it with this sentence: The candidate may be required by the law enforcement agency to provide additional information which is needed by the law enforcement agency for purposes of conducting the criminal background check.

The faculty senate resolution states that the policy invites abuse and legal liability.