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Villapudua Lowers Barriers to Re-Entry with AB 442

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO – Assemblymember Carlos Villapudua (D-Stockton) recently introduced AB 442 to ease the process of re-entering society for deserving individuals.

“Obtaining your own criminal history information can be costly and timely, despite many others having nearly instant access to it,” said Assemblymember Villapudua. “The process of re-entering society is burdensome enough. By lowering this barrier, these individuals can more efficiently pursue the tools needed to properly and successfully reintegrate into society.”

Criminal history information, or “RAP Sheets,” contain information that is necessary to evaluate a person for consideration of post-conviction relief, such as expungement, as well as for employment, housing, education, and immigration. This information can be accessed nearly instantly by courts, law enforcement, prosecutors, local governments, and a number of other entities.

For a person to obtain their own information, they must complete a multi-step process that requires an in-person application and paying fees that may cost up to $200. They then must wait weeks to receive the information before they can go to an attorney for support with any post-conviction remedies they may be eligible for, and to understand civil restrictions that may be imposed on them.

“California has many great remedies for individuals seeking to clean up their criminal record and reenter the workforce,” said Jael Myrick, Director of Clean Slate Program for the East Bay Community Law Center. “But the financial and logistical barriers for these same individuals to simply access their DOJ record can put these remedies out of reach. AB 442 is a common sense solution that will provide greater efficiency and access for those seeking to clear their records.”

AB 442 would allow clean slate, legal aid, pro bono, and other attorneys supporting people with a conviction history to more quickly obtain a RAP Sheet without additional costs and wait time. This provides an efficient method for these individuals to pursue potential remedies and important reintegration instruments such as employment, housing, education, and immigration.