Clean Slate Clearinghouse goes live
Earlier today the Council of State Governments (CSG) launched the Clean Slate Clearinghouse, an impressive online resource that provides information on the availability of expungement and sealing in all 50 states and helps individuals with criminal records connect with pro bono legal service providers. The project, which is jointly funded by the U.S. Departments of Justice and Labor, is the result of over a year’s work by CSG and its partner organizations.
The resource is focused squarely on record closure mechanisms and does not cover restoration authorities that leave the record intact, such as executive pardon, judicial certificates of relief, or nondiscrimination laws. It also does not directly address the effect of closure in different jurisdictions. It does, however, provide succinct information about the various record closure procedures available in each state, and does so in a way that non-lawyers can easily understand. In addition, it collects links to state application forms and guides as well as links to helpful third-party resources. As such, it will be a useful tool for individuals seeking to leave their criminal records in the past. It complements the more detailed legal analysis in the Restoration of Rights Project.
The Clearinghouse is available at https://cleanslateclearinghouse.org. We look forward to hearing about how it is being put to use and to watching its further development. The official project description follows:
The Clean Slate Clearinghouse—a project funded by, and developed in partnership with, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)—helps support juvenile and adult criminal record clearance around the country by:
- Providing people with criminal records and non-legal service providers with accurate, up-to-date information on record clearance and mitigation as well as contact information for legal service providers in all U.S. states and territories;
- Supporting legal service providers currently engaged in record clearance work and giving new legal service providers the tools and resources they need to develop record clearance programs; and
- Giving policymakers the information they need to compare their state’s record clearance policies to those of other states and to learn about best practices.
Roughly 70 million adults in the U.S. have a criminal record. Additionally, more than one million youth are charged with crimes and acquire juvenile court records each year. For both adults and juveniles, these records have long-lasting collateral consequences that may hinder an individual’s attempts at gaining employment, housing, and even returning to school.
Criminal record clearance enables a person’s criminal history information to be removed from easy public access, most often with the goal of improving employment and other outcomes for people with criminal records. Criminal record clearance is referred to differently in every state: commonly used terms include sealing, expungement, restricting, deleting, closure, and destruction, among others.
The Clean Slate Clearinghouse—which is a collaboration between The Council of State Governments Justice Center, Community Legal Services of Philadelphia, the National Juvenile Defender Center, the National Association of Counties, and the National League of Cities—builds on years of DOL Employment and Training Administration and DOJ Bureau of Justice Assistance’s efforts and represents a continued commitment from DOL and DOJ to improve employment outcomes for people with criminal records and meet employers’ needs for qualified workers.
- CCRC publishes California Compilation of Collateral Consequences - October 20, 2017
- California enacts sweeping fair employment law - October 20, 2017
- New report: 50-state guide to expungement and restoration of rights - October 12, 2017
- Clean Slate Clearinghouse goes live - September 29, 2017
- California poised for major change in fair employment law - September 22, 2017
- Nevada’s good sealing law gets better - September 1, 2017
- A closer look at Indiana’s expungement law - August 30, 2017
- “Presidential pardons have lost their true purpose” - August 29, 2017
- Illinois enacts boadest sealing law in Nation - August 25, 2017
- Preview of 50-state report on effective relief mechanisms - August 17, 2017