Two trends, decades in the making, are colliding.
The first trend, stemming from “tough on crime” policies and mass incarceration, is that more Americans have an arrest or conviction record than ever before. The second trend is the dramatic expansion of occupational licensing, which requires people to obtain permission from a government agency—and, commonly, pass a background check—before they can work.
The result? More than 70 million people with a record in the United States either face significant barriers when seeking a license to work, which is now required for one in four jobs, including many good-paying jobs that are in high demand in healthcare and other industries, or—even worse—they are automatically disqualified, sometimes for life.
To download NELP’s Fair Chance Licensing Act and a toolkit to help advocate for the legislation, CLICK HERE. The model legislation starts on page 23.