10 cents can't buy you much these days, but it cost Richard Eggers his job.
Back in 1963, Eggers tried to use a cardboard dime to do a load of laundry. He was caught, and the sheriff charged him with fraud. Now, nearly 50 years later, Wells Fargo fired the 68-year-old banker because of this "criminal record."
Wells Fargo dug up Eggers "sordid" past when it ran background and fingerprint checks on all its employees in order to come into compliance with a new federal law that bars insured depository institutions from hiring criminals.
The federal law is meant to bar identity thieves and the like from working in banks. Eggers is clearly not that kind of hardened ex-con. Worse, he's just one of thousands of employees who've lost their jobs due to these background checks, often for minor transgressions that took place decades ago.
Complying with federal law isn't an excuse to fire people for something as petty as a 49-year-old load of laundry. Tell Wells Fargo to re-hire Richard Eggers and stop firing people who are clearly not criminals.
I was appalled to hear about the firing of Richard Eggers, an employee in a Des Moines, Iowa branch of your institution for a stunt he pulled nearly 50 years ago. I urge you to re-hire Mr. Eggers and amend your policy to make sure that truly petty crimes -- more like pranks -- don't ruin a good employee's career.
Though you claim Mr. Eggers was fired in compliance with federal law, using a cardboard dime in a laundromat in 1963 isn't the time of crime the law was meant to cover. Clearly, Mr. Eggers gave up his prankster ways decades ago and has been a loyal employee at Wells Fargo for seven years. Please don't let a draconian interpretation of a law meant to target identity thieves cost him his livelihood.
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