Between 70 million and 100 million – or as many as one in three Americans – have some type of criminal record. Many have only minor offenses; some have only arrests without conviction. Yet having even a minor criminal history now carries lifelong barriers that can stand in the way of basic necessities such as employment and housing. This has broad implications—not only for the millions of individuals who are prevented from moving on with their lives and becoming productive citizens, but also for their families, communities, and the nation’s economy.
Join the Center for American Progress for a conversation about how mass incarceration and hyper-criminalization have become major drivers of poverty and inequality and what can be done to remove obstacles to economic security and mobility for people with criminal records. At this event, CAP will release a new report that explores how a criminal record serves as a barrier to employment, housing, public assistance, education and training, and more, as well as recommendations to ensure that Americans with criminal records have a fair shot at making a decent living, providing for their families, and joining the middle class.
Roy L. Austin Jr., Deputy Assistant to the President, Office of Urban Affairs, Justice and Opportunity, Domestic Policy Council
Sharon Dietrich, Litigation Director, Community Legal Services of Philadelphia
Marc Levin, Policy Director, Right on Crime
Ronald Lewis, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Marc Mauer, Executive Director, The Sentencing Project
Becky Pettit, Professor of Sociology, The University of Texas at Austin
Michele Sedney, Director of Career Services, Johns Hopkins Health System
Rebecca Vallas, Associate Director, Poverty to Prosperity Program, Center for American Progress