Expunging or sealing records Article


Governor Ducey's Second Chance Box

On November 6, 2017, Governor Doug Ducey signed Executive order 2017-07.  With this executive order, Arizona joins more than 2 dozen other states by changing state employment procedures to give former felons a fair shot at employment.  Before the recent order, job applications used by state agencies contained a question about the applicant’s criminal history.    Now, that practice will be banned.  The idea behind the Order is to give those who have paid their debt to society a second chance.  The criminal conviction issue may come up later during the job application process, but at least former felons will have their chance to get their foot in the door.  Applications for state jobs will no longer have the dreaded box that must be checked “yes” if the applicant has a criminal history.

    The Executive Order lists some hard facts about how a criminal conviction affects the life of the former felon and his family.
•    A criminal record on an application reduces the chances of being called back for a job interview by almost 50%.
•    Men with criminal records comprise 34% of healthy men aged 25-54, who are unemployed.
•    Two years after release, former felons with jobs are twice as likely as their unemployed counterparts to avoid trouble with the law.
•    Gainful employment is well known to be one of the best ways to decrease recidivism.
•    An estimated 1.5 million Arizonans have an arrest or criminal conviction on their record and that arrest record impedes the ability to find a decent job.

The State of Arizona is one of the largest employers in the state.  That makes this new state policy an important step in helping former felons enter the job market.  While the criminal conviction issue will very likely come up during the job interview or during the post interview vetting process, proponents hope, at that juncture, it will have far less impact.  By then, the interviewer will have met the individual, assessed his qualifications for the job, and be in a better position to determine if the conviction is even relevant to the job in question.

State agencies will look at more than the bald fact of a criminal record.  The agencies will consider the nature, circumstances and the recentness of the crime.  Was the crime eight or nine years in the past; was it the act of a youth with drug or alcohol issues that have since been resolved; was it a one-time thing arising from stressful circumstances?  The agency will consider if the crime is likely to affect future job performance.  For example:  a prior conviction for embezzlement would be a negative if the job involves handling state funds.  But many former felons with DUI convictions, drug offenses, shop lifting and even burglary convictions may have grown older and wiser.  They may be hoping to start anew to live a normal, productive life.  They deserve the chance to do that.

This executive order will have no impact on private industry.  Employers in the private sector will remain free to create their own employment policies on criminal history, but the Governor hopes that the state’s example will influence others.  Nor will the Order affect employment procedures for law enforcement agencies and the Department of Corrections.  Several Arizona cities, including Tucson, Tempe, and Phoenix, have already implemented similar policies and are hopeful these new policies will help people move forward toward a positive future.


Resources

www.azgovernor.gov/sites/default/files/related-docs/boxeo.pdf

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QUESTIONS

  • i had two class 6 undesignated possession of narcotic/paraphanelia charges in 2000 I completed my probation and just got my charges designated to a class one misdemeanor can I work in the medical field? I used to be a cna before that, my licence lapsed but was never taken away because of this that's why I am asking.
  • How do i Expunge 2005 a class 6 undesignated felony that went to a misdemeanor 2008? want to expunge all the case?
  • I am filling out the paper work "application to set aside a misdemeanor" and Im not sure if I have to get a notary for my signature at the bottom or if I leave that section blank for the court. It says "Subscribed and sworn before me on this date: by:" I am not sure who fills out this section which is followed by a notary. Please advise!
  • I was accused of shoplifting I did not do due to a misunderstanding . I was not arrested and the case was completely dismissed by the court. How do I remove this from public record?
  • I was charged with a felony, the state dropped its charges. How do I get this off my record?
  • How long after the completion of a misdemeanor sentence until records can be sealed in the state of Arizona?
  • My brother has a 15 yr old felony child abuse conviction against him which was deemed non dangerous and non repetitive (an accidental injury to his then infant daughter) to which he confessed and served his time. He desperately needs substantial employment to support himself and his three children, but this has proved almost impossible due to his felony status. Is there any way at all to have this expunged/set aside? May be grasping at straws, but any info will help. Thank you and god bless.
  • I was convicted of Theft, A class 6 undesignated offense back in the mid 90's. I completed 3 years on probation. My probation officer put in a order of discharge from probation in the late 90's . He signed it and the Judge signed it. It was never checked on if it was a misdemeanor or a felony. I never recieved and paperwork that stated anything about it, just that I was released from probation. So what do I need to do to get this removed? If the paperwork was not completed correctly my the courts can I get it off my record? Thanks
  • Is it helpful to get set asides on misdemeanor convictions besides paraphinalia or drug related. Misdemeanor convictions.bcuz on an Arizona website it says it would be less help with other types of misdemeanor s besides drug related. Either way what are my career options with several misdemeanors that are5 to 2 years old? ? :( I don't think I'll be Abe to maintain a level one finger print clearance card a level one card to be exact so I need to know all of my career options for Arizona. Or would I be better off moving out of state. Or is there enough forgiveness in this state for wide options
  • My son is a college student, he has never been in trouble (age 19 soon to be 20). He was arrested for a misdemeanor for minor in consumption, and giving false information to officer (lied about his name shortly after came clean). Do we need to retain an attorney to get this cases expunged or set aside?

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