HB 2373: Our Work Isn't over Yet
I’m Karlos Lloyd. I’m a FORCE leader and I traveled to Springfield eight times this session to advocate for HB 2373, which would expand eligibility for records to be sealed.
I’m happy to report that HB 2373 passed the House and the Senate with significant bi-partisan support!!!!!
I testified before the Senate Criminal Law Committee about the importance of passing HB 2373 and will share some of my testimony with you.
I am a father of three boys, I just got my Bachelor’s degree in Accounting at Northeastern Illinois University. In addition to being a full time student, I am a part time contractor through the Safer Foundation, practicing Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to men returning to citizenship through the adult transit system.
In addition I volunteer at the El Campos Alternative High School on the North West Side of Chicago where I do restorative justice with the youth there. The reason I am uniquely qualified to work with adults and youth is that I, too, was part of the criminal justice system.
In and out of prison, my last conviction was 17 years ago for selling drugs. My life is completely different now than all those years ago. But despite my education and community involvement, I am still denied the opportunity to earn a decent living for me and my family. Some recent examples of denials are from American Express, Uber, Fox Trotter, Sears and Dynamex.
Illinois’s current sealing law only allows 9 felonies to be sealed – not one of those felony convictions is mine. What HB 2373 does is it will give me the second chance to go to court, show what I have accomplished, allow a judge to make the decision and give me a chance to move forward without receiving many denials.
I am not alone – I’m a voice for hundreds of thousands of people that are looking for an opportunity to prove to society they have changed and be able to provide for themselves and their families.
Our work is not over yet, HB 2373 will now be sent to the Governor’s office for his signature. We are handing out postcards that Restoring Rights and Opportunities Coalition of Illinois (RROCI) will collect and deliver in person to the Governor’s office asking him to sign HB 2373 into law.
Please fill out a postcard and take some back to your congregation. All completed postcards need to be given to your organizer by August 14.