I am on a volunteer EMS squad in NJ. My squad does not do backround checks on new applicants and I try to tell them how important it is. Want to know how many vol. squads out there do back round checks on new members?
My VFD requires us to be finger printed, but only looks for criminal records. There are no universal professional standards that would be detected in a detailed, 100 page, blue book background check I went through for my job as a paramedic. It's not unusual for an individual to be fired from one BLS service and working at another the next day.
If we want to be respected in the public safety community, EMS practitioners need to have the same background investigation police and professional fire applicants get.
The State of Texas is pretty good about criminal background checks at time of certification and renewal. However, with services, it just depends. I have worked for places that did everything from credit checks to employment history to criminal background with prints. And, when I was a bit newer, I worked for a place where the interviewing supervisor didn't check a single reference before offering me a job on the spot. And to put that into perspective, it was a temp part time job I really didn't even want. Just something to get a few extra bucks for the holidays. I showed up in a tshirt, jeans and Corona flip flops. Not my most professional of moments.