New Legislation Reduces Barriers for Returning Citizens

Today NLEN joins the Safer Foundation and the many agencies and individuals who advocated and helped to gain the Governor’s support in signing a series of bills removing barriers associated with a criminal background with special celebration and recognition of the occupational licensing reform bill, HB 5973 –  a long and hard fought collective effort. We especially celebrate that HB 5973 will open employment and entrepreneurial doors for so many who have served their time to restore their fundamental right to work.

We applaud the Governor for this important step to reducing barriers to employment for returning citizens and ask him to continue to open opportunities by acting on the following:

  • Pursuing sentencing reform to achieve his goal of reducing the Illinois prison population by 25% over the next 10 years
  • Promoting  pretrial diversion at the local level to reduce the number of individuals incarcerated prior to conviction
  • Expanding transitional employment opportunities for individuals who were recently released from incarceration or suffer from chronic unemployment