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Press Release

AG Shapiro: We Must Support Citizens Returning To Our Communities

July 1, 2020 | Topic: Peoples AG

First Recommendation from 2020 PARC Report Becomes Law

HARRISBURG—Attorney General Josh Shapiro today released a statement on Governor Wolf’s signing of Senate Bill 637, which lifts restrictions on acquiring occupational licenses for individuals who have been previously incarcerated, into law.

The bill is the first piece of legislation that has been signed into law at the recommendation of the 2020 Pennsylvania Reentry Council’s (PARC) Report, released by the Attorney General and Governor’s offices in March. The Report outlines an effort to support reentering citizens as well as recommendations for enhancing the successful entry of returning citizens. PARC, which was founded in 2017, is a collaborative organization bringing together government agencies, service providers, advocates, returning citizens, and other stakeholders from across the Commonwealth.

“Today, a law that kept former inmates handcuffed to the past — and prevented primarily Black men from contributing to our communities — is gone. We must dismantle these old systems so all citizens have an opportunity to succeed,” said Attorney General Josh Shapiro. “The recommendations in the PARC report will give returning citizens the chance they need to restart their lives and stay out of prison. It will reduce recidivism. I thank Governor Wolf, Senator John Disanto, Representative Sheryl Delozier, and Representative Jordan Harris for supporting this important initiative to end restrictions that have set people back, and give people the opportunity they need to reenter society.”

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