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Missouri lawmakers discuss “Clean Slate” bill, making it easier for wiping clean criminal records (Mar. 28, 2024)

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KY3) — Missouri lawmakers are discussing a way to make it easier for those eligible to have their criminal records wiped clean.

The policy is called “Clean Slate.” The organization behind the push says only about 1% of eligible convicts are able to successfully get their records expunged because the process is expensive and based on an application system.

“Clean Slate” would change it to an automated system, meaning those eligible will have a much shorter wait. If passed, it’s expected to impact nearly 2 million Missourians.

Fran Marion says she spent six years in jail for passing a bad check.

“She spoke in favor of the bill at a hearing this week, saying that a single felony has affected her life ever since,” said Marion. “It’s like I’m doing a life sentence. When I say second chance. I’m still waiting for that second chance. And I’m 44 years old, I’m getting older. In my mind, will I ever get to see that second chance?”

Clean Slate bills have already been enacted in Utah, Michigan, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Connecticut, with several other states also debating the policy. The Missouri House Committee that heard the bill this week will have to meet again to vote on it.

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