Today GOSO is celebrating the newly-passed “Clean Slate Act.” Signed into law this morning by Governor Kathy Hochul, the law seals the convictions of people who complete their sentences and remain out of trouble for a set period — three years for misdemeanors, eight for eligible felonies.
The law represents a paradigm shift in the way the state addresses individuals in crisis. GOSO has a proven track record of effectively assisting young individuals in crisis by demonstrating how significant investments in their future during such times will lead to positive long-term outcomes for them. The bill will provide a level of access to opportunity that the young people that we serve will benefit from tremendously.
This is important because a history of conviction creates long-term barriers to achieving economic stability and active community participation, impacting not just individuals but also their families. In the context of education and employment, automatic expungement will ensure that GOSO’s participants will not miss out on job opportunities or run the risk of college rejection. New York has a history of enacting meaningful reforms to support full participation in the life and economy of the state, and the Governor has proved the state is capable of important criminal justice reforms based on fairness and opportunity.
Read GOSO’s previous memorandum of support for the Clean Slate Act below.