The old “pay your dues to society” adage may finally ring true for some ex-felons, as Kentucky lawmakers finally cleared a felony expungement bill that will help non-violent felons step back into society. This will give thousands of Kentuckians a second chance at leading productive lives according to the bill’s lead sponsor, Rep. Darryl Owens.
“It’s going to mean a new lease on life. It’s going to mean that many folks are going to now be able to go to a school and read to their kids, go on field trips with their kids, get a good-paying job,” said Owens. (WLWT)
The Kentucky House passed the felony expungement bill without a debate and with an overwhelming number of votes for it. In the past few years, the bill has come up short every time it reached the General Assembly.
The bill has seen some changes from its original version, namely that it now limits the number of felonies that are applicable for expungement to 61 Class D felonies.
In addition, the amended version also requires those that are eligible for expungement to first wait five years after serving out a sentence (parole included) before making their request.
Rand may stand to the opposite of Democrats in many things, but criminal reform is definitely not one of them. In fact, Paul has been very vocal about the need for criminal justice reform on the federal level, including teaming up with Cory Booker (D-N.J) on the REDEEM Act (Record Expungement Designed to Enhance Employment), which:
Last year, while attending the Bipartisan Summit on Fair Justice, Senator Paul said:
“I think the biggest impediment to employment and to voting in our country is a criminal record. And until we address that, I don’t think we’re serious about either voting rights or getting people back to work and minimizing how many people have to be on assistance.” (Washington Times)
(Photo courtesy of QUOI Media Group, Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0)
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