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Oakland Police Applicants Asked If They Are Sex Assault Victims

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“Today I ordered the immediate removal of a waiver where OPD applicants authorize the release of confidential records, including those that would disclose whether they are victims of sexual assault.

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OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The Oakland, California, police department asks officer applicants to disclose whether they have been sexually assaulted, which appears to be a rare and potentially problematic inquiry, a newspaper reported Sunday.

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Scoop: Want to join the Oakland Police Department? You will be asked to disclose whether you have been sexually assaulted.

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The department also said being a victim of a sexual assault would have no bearing on whether an applicant was hired.

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Oakland Police Officer Marco Marquez said the department's background investigators are "interested in every police report that an applicant might appear in," including whether the person was a suspect, witness or victim.

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The San Francisco Chronicle queried police in the state's 10 most populous cities and could not find another instance of screening for sexual assault victims.

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On the form, applicants are asked to give the department authorization to access information about their financial past, criminal history and “including if [they] have been a victim of sexual assault.”

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The newspaper reported that representatives of police departments in San Francisco, San Jose, Sacramento, Los Angeles, Bakersfield, Anaheim and Santa Ana said they do not ask applicants to disclose whether they are sexual assault victims.

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Oakland, California, police department asks officer applicants if they have been sexually assaulted, which some say is a potentially problematic inquiry.

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Oakland police officials said no candidate would be denied a position for being a sexual assault victim.

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“Because the penal code and the government code have provisions in it that were enacted to protect the identity of sexual assault victims.

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#BREAKING: #Oakland mayor halts @OaklandPoliceCA practice of asking applicants about sexual assault. via @pfimrite:

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Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf responded to criticism Sunday that the police department has routinely asked recruits if they were victims of sexual assault.

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