Clinic Explores Clearing Criminal Records for a Fresh Start
The Evanston Public Library, in partnership with The Moran Center and the City of Evanston, will present an Expungement Clinic on Saturday, March 19th, from 1-3pm in the Evanston Public Library’s Community Meeting Room. The Expungement Clinic is a free event to educate the public on the importance and process of clearing criminal records.
Many people do not realize the long-lasting impact of an arrest or conviction record. According to Joi-Anissa Russell, Director of Strategic Partnerships for the James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy in Evanston, misconceptions about criminal records abound. “People don’t realize that any and all involvement with police or courts will remain on their record until they take action to clear it,” she said. Because involvement with the criminal justice system can severely limit employment, housing and educational opportunities, many eligible individuals will reap considerable benefits by petitioning to expunge or seal their records. Additionally, Ms. Russell adds, “Even if an individual has a felony record that cannot be expunged or sealed, there may be other avenues to minimize the negative impact of the criminal record.” Such options may include obtaining a Certificate of Rehabilitation, health care worker waiver or learning how to explain a criminal history when applying for jobs, housing or educational opportunities.
Although no records will be expunged or sealed at the Clinic, following the records relief presentation, Moran Center staff attorneys and volunteers will be available to meet with attendees individually to begin the record-clearing process. To learn more about the Clinic, visit www.moran-center.org.
This Expungement Clinic is a collaborative effort of the James B. Moran Center for Youth Advocacy, the City of Evanston, and the Evanston Public Library.