A blacklist is a list of groups or people who, for one reason or another, are being denied a service, privilege, job, access or recognition. Blacklists have been used for centuries as a means to identify and discriminate against undesirable individuals and organizations. One of the most famous instances of blacklisting in the U.S. occurred during the 1940s and 1950s in the entertainment Industry. In 1938, the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) was formed to investigate activities of communism, fascism or other "un-American" political affiliations within the United States. In 1947, the HUAC blacklist blocked screenwriters and other Hollywood professionals from obtaining employment because they were claimed to have Communist ties. It started by listing 151 industry professionals and lasted until 1960 when it was finally discovered that the blacklisted professionals had been working under assumed names for many years, making the blacklist pointless.
A blacklist might also consist of a list of names developed by a country that seeks to boycott trade with other countries for political reasons; or a government that wishes to specify who will not be allowed entry into their country.
Employment blacklists examples would include a labor union that identifies firms with which it will not work; or vice versa, when a company will not hire someone due to their known activities as a union organizer where they were previously employed. High level executives are sometimes blacklisted in retaliation if they leave on bad terms with their former employer. This may be done through gestures or tone of voice during reference contacts, or even by direct slander, which involves talking badly or spreading vicious rumors about the person in their business circles. In some cases, blacklists have done irreparable damage to people's lives, keeping them from ever being employed again in their chosen career or denying them access to organizations that are influential to their career.
Blacklisting by medical providers is an act by doctors who deny care to a certain patients. For example, a patient who has previously sued a doctor may be blacklisted by other doctors because of the lawsuit, or if the patient is very difficult to deal with, s/he may also get blacklisted by medical professionals.
Because the main purpose of blacklists is to exclude and discriminate, they can also result in unfair and illegal discrimination. For example, if a labor union makes a blacklist of workers who refuse to become members or conform to its rules, it has committed an "unfair labor practice" in violation of federal laws. But there are also many types of blacklists that are legal. For example, a store may maintain a list of individuals who are delinquent on their bills and deny them credit privileges, or Companies that have had a payment card merchant account terminated, may be blacklisted along with their directors, and/or may be added to a list referred to when companies apply for an account; they are then unlikely to be granted a new account by any provider. Similarly, credit reports already effectively function as blacklists by identifying individuals who are poor credit risks.
If you suspect that you have been blacklisted, do not confront the person or party on your own, as this could lead to an even worse outcome. Instead, begin an investigation immediately. Our private investigators at ICS are trained to handle blacklisting cases, and they have the resources to do so. The sooner that you seek professional help with your claim from ICS, the better the chance of proving your case.