Criminal Records Get New Scrutiny | Georgia Public Broadcasting


Criminal Records Get New Scrutiny | Georgia Public Broadcasting

ATLANTA — A group of Georgia lawmakers is working to overhaul how the state keeps and shares criminal records.

“Georgia has one of the, in my opinion, most antiquated laws relating to record restriction of criminal records in the country,” said state Senator Joshua McKoon (R-Columbus).

McKoon has been leading the Senate’s study committee on expungement reform. The committee formed as part of a resolution passed during the 2013 legislative session. At issue is how and when the state removes offenses from someone’s public criminal record if he or she was falsely accused, or has served his or her sentence.

“As a conservative I believe once somebody has paid their debt to society for a crime they’ve committed–they’ve been punished–then what I want that person to do is climb the economic ladder of success, become a productive citizen, pay taxes like all of us do and not go back to a life of crime,” McKoon explained. “[It’s] hard to do that if we place these barriers to employment.”

One of the problems with the current system, according to Marissa Dodson, policy director for the Georgia Justice Project, is that businesses often use private background check companies, which may not have all the information.

via Criminal Records Get New Scrutiny.

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