To all of those potential employers who discriminate against felons
Posted in the Louisville Forum
#2 Jun 11, 2013
Now is the interim period between regular sessions for the Senate Judiciary Committee. They are the Committee that passes Laws in the State of Kentucky. They will hold meetings once a month to discuss what will be addressed in the November regular session. I encourage you to contact the Senate Judiciary members and encourage them to vote on and pass HB 47. The law that will allow non-violent felons who have proven to be good citizens over a period of 10 years, to get their Class D felonies expunged, so that they can get on with their lives and become productive citizens. This will allow them to get jobs and become productive citizens, not a burden on the system and others. No matter what your standpoint is on this topic there is something that you have to consider. The recidivism rate for felony offenders is high. That is in part due to the fact that those felons who would otherwise be productive citizens cannot find jobs and support themselves or their families. Giving low risk felons a chance at a new beginning, is a good incentive for felons not to re-offend, because they know that if they do well during the 10 year period, they will have a chance at a good life. When people are pushed into a corner and they are out of options, they may do things that they would not normally do.
For example: if a persons family is hungry, and they cant get housing or jobs, that person may do something that they would never dream of doing had circumstances been different. It may be a bad choice, but between the choice of going hungry, being homeless and broke, and not being employable or eligible for state or government help, that person may have very limited choices to survive. They may take the point of view for example What am I supposed to do, I cant eat, I have no way to pay rent, I have no way to feed my family, I am not employable, I have 2 options, break the law to get money or lay down and DIE. Most likely they are not going to lie down and die. So then the cycle continues. A person who made 1 mistake years ago, has now graduated up to more serious crimes, which will probably evolve into a persistent felony offender. We can break a big part of this cycle by convincing the Senate Judiciary Committee to vote on and pass HB 47.
Senate Judiciary Committee Members:
Sen. Katie Stine [Vice Chair]
Sen. Perry B. Clark
Sen. Carroll Gibson
Sen. Sara Beth Gregory
Sen. Ray S. Jones II
Sen. Jerry P. Rhoads
Sen. John Schickel
Sen. Dan "Malano" Seum
Sen. Robert Stivers II
Sen. Robin L. Webb
#5 Jun 13, 2013
To all of the potential employers who discriminate against felons who are qualified for the job. Here is the anti-discrimination statute for Kentucky. You can't legally discriminate against someone qualified for the job. And who meets said requirements for the position.
III. Nondiscrimination in Licensing and Employment:
Margaret Colgate Love, Relief from the Collateral Consequences of a Criminal Conviction, March 2007
Public Employment and Licensing: See Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann.§§ 335B.020-.070. Under §
335B.020(1),no person shall be disqualified from public employment, or from ... any
occupation for which a license is required, solely because of a prior conviction of a
crime, unless the crime for which convicted is [a felony or misdemeanor punishable by
imprisonment] or otherwise directly relates to the position of employment sought or the
occupation for which the license is sought. In determining if a conviction directly
relates to the position of public employment sought or the occupation for which the
license is sought,the hiring or licensing authority shall consider:
(a) The nature and seriousness of the crime for which the individual was
(b) The relationship of the crime to the purposes of regulating the position of
public employment sought or the occupation for which the license is sought;
(c) The relationship of the crime to the ability, capacity, and fitness required to
perform the duties and discharge the responsibilities of the position of
employment or occupation.§ 335B.020(2).
Also, under Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann.§ 335B.020(3),Nothing in KRS 335B.020 to 335B.070
shall be construed so as to limit the power of the hiring or licensing authority to
determine that an individual shall be entitled to public employment or a license regardless
of that individual's conviction if the hiring or licensing authority determines that the
individual has been successfully rehabilitated.
See Op. Atty Gen. 80-388 (1980): Conviction of a felony is not an absolute bar to an
occupational license. Ky. Rev. Stat. Ann. Ch. 335B supersedes all other statutes and
regulations as to licensing convicted persons. The licensing board should consider if an applicant has been rehabilitated.
#6 Jun 13, 2013
Class D felonies are just a step above a misdemeanor, they are kind of borderline. They are non-violent. Its not a felony that you get for robbing someone, or assaulting someone. They may be traffic related, Dui related, or some other non-violent offence. Some are so minor that you serve no prison or jail time for, you just get probation. If you stay out of trouble for the time of the probation, you get off of probation and all is well. The thing is, that felony stays or your record, and when you go to try to get a job, on paper you might as well be a SEX OFFENDER or A MURDERER, the results are the same. You will not be hired, you are a liability. You will be turned down for public housing. Going to school and getting educated will not change your job prospects. As the law is now, this stays on your record for the rest of your life. Thats kind of A harsh sentence for something that A person just received PROBATION for. Thats like A life sentence to be served outside of the jail system.
#7 Jun 13, 2013
You can have your civil rights restored, but it makes no difference, the felony still stays on your record. (I have my Civil Rights restored). I can vote, but the felony is still on your record. I have hired attorneys. Expungement happens only in very rare cases. Usually when it its drug related and you are willing to testify at trial against someone for a lesser sentence. Otherwise there is no such thing as felony expungement of your records. The felony stays on your record and in the background databases for employers to see.
#8 Jun 13, 2013
I just wanted to say I was happy to read this because I'm a felon and I want to be a College Math Professor. I've always worried about not being hired due my charge which I was actually the victim of and it was turned around to make me the criminal. I was charged a year and a half after it happened, I fought it another year and a half, and then I couldn't afford the trial for 5 grand all at once. I told the judge I was innocent and I couldn't afford a lawyer for trial. He dismissed me from court. I was never given an attorney and they used my children's Survivor Benefits as my income even though I am not allowed to use it for myself. Only for them. My actual income was only 1000 a month, I had 3 girls at the time, and one on the way. I ended up pleading guilty after 2 lawyers, a private investigator, and getting a worse deal than I would have if I just didn't fight the case. I was/am innocent of the crime so I had to fight it on principle. My battle was lost. I'm almost off probation now, 18 more days, but now I've been violated 2 times in the last 2 weeks for using facebook and associating with a friend who is a felon. I am freaking out, and I don't understand why they can use things that aren't illegal to others, to condemn me. I was on facebook only to notify people of my daughters' father's death, and to locate his father whom I had never met until after my ex's death. I told my p.o. and bam, violated. Then I have my friend who I've known for 3 years and he helps me with my girls so I can go to school while my boyfriend travels all the time, and he's the only friend I actually have it seems, and when my p.o. found out he was helping me and on probation, violation number 2. I have 18 days left after being on probation for almost 5 years. Now I'm just getting violated all over the place for dumb things. Sorry, I guess I just needed to vent. Everyone just remember, felons are people too, and just because someone makes a mistake, it should not haunt them the rest of their life in all aspects of life. Do not judge, until you've been there. Just because you get away with your crimes such as underage drinking, smoking illegal drugs, etc, don't think you're any different. Most people have broken a law at some point, and even if you think it's small, it doesn't make you right or any more of a person. A good person is one with compassion and empathy. Not one who is judgemental. You can't judge someone off of one bad decision in their life. If you do, then you're just plain ignorant.
#9 Jun 13, 2013
When a felon says they were innocent but couldn't afford the legal fees to fight the charges, that's just another of thousands of excuses such people make. Discriminating against that kind of person makes sense. The world needs to reduce unfair discrimination, against people who happen to be the wrong race or nationality or have a disability. Only when that kind of discrimination ends will it make sense to discuss discrimination against felons. A felony is the kind of crime for which in some parts of the world you would have been hanged. So just think of yourself as having a second chance, but being handicapped for that second chance, to see if you can make anything good happen, which you probably can't, because you aren't that type of person.
#10 Jun 13, 2013
And there is no such thing as a non-violent felon.
#11 Jun 13, 2013
really? You wanna go there? Your a complete freak show.
#12 Jun 13, 2013
Assault 3rd is a class D felony and it's a violent offense. Robbery 2nd is as well.
#13 Jun 13, 2013
I checked and you are correct about that. In some states however that assault 3rd is a Class A misdemeanor. The law is so vague that if you word something one way, it becomes a felony, if its worded another way for the same type of thing it becomes a felony. Also the same offense directed at someone in authority makes it a felony.
#14 Jun 13, 2013
Meant to say: "If it is worded another way for the same type of thing it's a Misdemeanor".
#15 Jun 13, 2013
I got into some trouble when I was younger; however it was minor enough that I just received probation for it. I received no prison time for it. I received a DUI for refusing to take the blow test, I wasnt thinking clearly due to what caused this. The court system threw 2 Class D felonies on there for a DUI related incident. I had only had 2 beers (which is legal) so I thought I was fine. Really only 1 ½ beers since I was on the second one when this happened. The alcohol had an interaction with some anti-depressant medication that my doctor wanted me to try a few weeks before and I Blacked out and found myself in another town. I had stopped taking the medication over a week and a half before. That was how I ended up in trouble. I did have to serve some jail time for the DUI. I had no Idea that antidepressants and alcohol could cause you to have a psychotic episode. I had never heard of such a thing. I had taken nothing for at least a week and a half. I did not mess up on purpose, it was just something that happened, and I have been paying the price ever since.
#16 Jun 13, 2013
During the whole fine and court phase I missed no work during that period. I was such a dangerous felon that I was allowed to leave the jail and go to work every day (sarcasm). I went to work, worked 40 - 60 hours or more every week. Paid my taxes, was a good employee. I had no points. I was always on time even during this period. I had worked there for over 5 years. When my employer found out that I had received a felony, I was terminated for such a minor infraction that it should have just been a verbal warning. The companys disciplinary action structure was, you get 3 verbal warnings and then a write up for minor infractions. After a couple of write-ups you get probation. If you do not do well on probation you are terminated! I went straight to termination for joking around with a friend. Unemployment found that it was an Unjust Firing, so I did get my unemployment. I have to lie on applications and hope the company doesnt do a good background check just to get a job since that incident. I really dont think I deserve a life sentence for something I had no intention of doing in the first place.
#17 Jun 14, 2013
I'm not sure in what states assaulting a peace officer is still a misdemeanor but they need to get with the times. My point though is that there are class d felonies, in Kentucky, that are violent offenses as defined by their elements. I also dispute that the law is vague. Every element is defined and quite clear to me.
#18 Jun 14, 2013
I did a quick internet search on assault 3rd and this site came up. In this state it says that its a class A misdemeanor. However I did not see anything where it addressed a peace officer.
I did another one with "in KY" on it and it is a felony against a peace officer.
#19 Jun 14, 2013
Yes, I know its a felony in Kentucky ...that's why I brought it up. Also, you can't just search assault 3rd to see if its a felony in other states, you have to look for their comparative charge. States differentiate greatly in what laws are named. Assault 3rd here may be felony battery in Indiana or Illinois.
#20 Jun 14, 2013
If your foolish enough to commit a felony you better be ready to live with the consequences.Quit your crying,nobody forced you to ruin your life,you did it all on your own.
#21 Jun 14, 2013
O.K I see your point. I suppose if I knew all of the laws and codes and jurisdictions I would be a lawyer or cop and could have defended myself at trial. Learn as you go.
#22 Jun 14, 2013
As for you, I have probably accomplished more in the last year than you have all of your life. I have pushed to have a bill created to get this changed. Had it drafted and presented to the house of Representatives where it passed by an overwhelming majority. I'm still working on this and learning as I go. You are just an arm chair quarterback who sits behind his computer and makes smug comments. Please don't waste your breath or my time.
#23 Jun 14, 2013
As to your bill, I would support it as long as it wasn't a blanket Class D felony expungement. Make it possible but weigh each case on its own merits.
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