Despite the heat, volunteers from the Office of Defense Services and community partners turned out at the William “Hicks” Anderson Community Center in Wilmington to talk with roughly 85 individuals about their opportunities for a second chance.
The event on Saturday, July 23rd, was also attended by multiple agencies, employers, and non-profits to provide job opportunities, voter registration, and life skills coaching.
Saturday’s clinic was organized with the help of many partners, including the City of Wilmington Mayor’s Office, the City of Wilmington Department of Parks and Recreation, the APEX Program with the Delaware Department of Labor, Rep. Sherry Dorsey Walker, the Wilmington Alliance, the Delaware Center for Justice, Clean Slate Delaware, the Delaware Criminal Justice Information System, YWCA of Delaware, Friendship House, Goodwill of Delaware and Delaware County, and the Delaware Department of Elections.
As many as one in three Americans have some type of criminal record, according to the Sentencing Project.
In Delaware, there are an estimated 400,000 individuals who may be eligible for a second chance. A criminal record can limit access to stable employment, housing, education or participating in social and civic life. Delaware – through recent legislative advancements – has greatly expanded access to second chances, but there is still work to be done to reach eligible individuals.
People can learn more about expungements and reach out for an eligibility screening here.