Working in the mobile food industry is much like any other restaurant industry job which means there can be a lot of turnover. Whether you are new to the industry or just need to fill a recently vacated position, you need to know what cannot be asked when you are involved in the hiring process.
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) guidelines, as well as federal and state laws, prohibit asking certain questions of a job applicant, either on the application form or during the interview.
So what questions should you sidestep? Basically, you can’t ask about anything not directly related to the job, including:
- Age or date of birth (if interviewing a teenager, you can ask if he or she is 16 years old)
- Sex, race, creed, color, religion or national origin
- Disabilities of any kind
- Date and type of military discharge
- Marital status
- Maiden name (for female applicants)
- If a person is a citizen; however, you can ask if he or she has the legal right to work in the United States
Other questions you should avoid include:
How many children do you have? How old are they? Who will care for them while you are at work?
Have you ever been treated by a psychologist or psychiatrist?
Have you ever been treated for drug addiction or alcoholism?
Have you ever been arrested? (You may ask if the person has been convicted if it is accompanied by a statement saying that a conviction will not necessarily disqualify an applicant for employment.)
How many days were you sick last year?
Have you ever filed for worker’s compensation? Have you ever been injured on the job?
We hope this list helps keep you from getting in trouble for asking the wrong question to applicants who are interested in working for your food truck business.