Bradford Bill Helping Increase Employment Opportunities for the Rehabilitated Approved by the Senate
SACRAMENTO – Last week, the California State Senate approved SB 1412. The bill, authored by Senator Steven Bradford (D-Gardena), clarifies what information employers may use when screening job applicants. SB 1412 continues the progress that the Legislature and Governor Brown began last year to provide more formerly-incarcerated Californians with a real opportunity to rebuild their lives.
“Formerly incarcerated individuals bear an unfair burden: they must obtain legal employment, but their applications are often immediately disqualified for noting a conviction, including those that have been expunged and are irrelevant to the job,” said Senator Bradford. “This barrier serves no purpose and can only harm communities by pushing individuals back into a life crime.”
Under state and federal law, certain employers are required to conduct background checks, which can include records that have been judicially expunged. In some instances, employers overzealously screen job applicants, leading to individuals being denied employment for convictions unrelated to the job that they may otherwise be qualified.
"We seek real, lawful remedies when rebuilding our lives after a conviction, and SB 1412 will help us move forward from past to future,” said Susan Burton, Founder and Executive Director of A New Way of Life Reentry Project, the bill’s sponsor. “We thank Senator Bradford for his leadership and the numerous supporters of this bill for their support."
“No one is saying that criminal records or expungements should be ignored,” continued Bradford. “The rehabilitation of those who have atoned for their mistakes is being ignored, and this bill will help end that failure of justice.”
Senator Bradford represents the Los Angeles County communities of Carson, Compton, Gardena, Harbor City, Hawthorne, Inglewood, Lawndale, Lennox, San Pedro, Torrance, Watts, Willowbrook, and Wilmington.