• Petitioned nia gill

This petition was delivered to:

nj legislator
nia gill
nj legislator
Robert singer
NJ Legislator
Ralph Caputo
New Jersey Governor
New Jersey State Senate
New Jersey State House
New Jersey-020A
State Rep. Annette Quijano
New Jersey-040B
State Rep. Scott Rumana
New Jersey-001
State Sen. Jeff Van Drew
New Jersey-022A
State Rep. Linda Stender

Ex Offenders Need Not Apply: Discrimination Against Non Violent Felons

    1. E Q
    2. Petition by

      E Q

      East Rutherford, NJ

Imagine someone telling you can't be what you want to be in life because you made a dumb decision as a kid? The United States has the highest prison rate,(not to mention 92 MILLION people with a criminal record) and it is not a coincidence that most people that commit crimes, keep committing crimes and end up back in prison. Some are NOT given the opportunity to succeed even if they are honestly rehabilitated. This petition is for the people who have changed, not the ones that choose to stay the same. We deserve a chance at a better life, and a chance to better humanity with our stories. We deserve the chance to succeed. I just want the opportunity to become that lawyer, doctor, hairdresser, teacher or whatever else that happens to spark my interest. Ex-felons are EXTREMELY stigmatized and aren't allowed to go for their dreams and goals.(We're not all the same, people commit different crimes) Many of us have already overcome many hard obstacles and are looking to better our lives and support our families (honestly and legally) Aren't you almost forcing us to stay the same by taking away job prospects and opportunities? In this economy it is hard enough finding a job, having felon next to your name makes it even harder. Many of us have our own stories to tell, this is mine...

I am a stigmatized 26 year old female, who is being discriminated against as a result of a NON VIOLENT felony conviction I received when I was a young adult. I am a recovering heroin addict who committed a 4th degree shoplifting offense in an attempt to support my drug habit. I also received more than two misdemeanor convictions for shoplifting as well.(Which include stealing pineapple juice from Shop Rite)  In the state of New Jersey this PERMANENTLY bars me from expunging my record, which subsequently prevents me from seeking licensed employment. This includes my dream of becoming a teacher or a lawyer. The law in NJ regarding convicted felons severely limits my job prospects to low wages and poor benefits, especially as a female ex-offender. I have the highest of goals and aspirations in my life, and I do not want to be a waitress or a worker at subway for the rest of my life. (Which are the options people that work with ex-offenders give you or to get food stamps/GA) I feel this is an unfair and discriminatory practice which prevents rehabilitated ex-offenders from becoming "normal" productive members of society. I am a firm believer in punishing criminal behavior, however the law subjects shoplifters to the same impediments as murderers and rapists under the stigmatized characterization of FELON. This lifelong-lasting cruel and unusual punishment is both unfair and contrary to the eighth amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America. This petition is important for the advancement of rehabilitated non-violent ex-offenders and the elimination of discrimination and stigmatization of convicted felons. 

Many people will say "You made your bed, now you have to lie in it." I agree, and I have. I did my time, I paid my fines, and I haven't committed a crime since. I stole to support my drug habit, a drug habit I no longer have. Please help the ones who have changed and the the ones who want to change, but aren't given the chance to. Please take the time out for this petition. Thank you.

*American Bar Association identifies over 38,000 punitive provisions that apply to ex-offenders. Employers have the right to discriminate against any person who has an arrest record based on the principle of “negligent hiring” in the State of New Jersey. As a result of these liability statutes, employers protect themselves and their businesses by refusing to hire ex offenders. The end result is that convicted offenders, and even those who only have a mild arrest record, have extremely difficult time obtaining employment.

*The most recent outcome study conducted by the Department of Corrections reveals that the overall re-arrest rate for adult offenders previously incarcerated in a New Jersey state correctional facility is 55%, the reconviction rate is 43% and the re-incarceration rate is 31%. In New Jersey, as well as nationally, the highest risk period formerly incarcerated persons face is within that initial period following their release from prison. Of those offenders rearrested, about half were rearrested within nine months of release.....(I wonder why?) Employment of people with criminal records who have paid their dues is the key social policy that substantially reduces re-offending.


Recent signatures


    1. Reached 3,000 signatures
    2. share your story and have a voice!

      E Q
      by E Q
      Petition Organizer

      if you or someone you love have suffered because of this social problem, please send me your story via email. we all have a voice, and we need to have it heard! the more people this affects, the better the chances we have in changing this. share this petition with anyone who will listen, we deserve equal opportunity! thank you and keep those signatures coming!

    3. Reached 2,500 signatures
    4. WE HIT 500!

      E Q
      by E Q
      Petition Organizer

      love you all! let's keep it going!

    5. Reached 500 signatures
    6. over 400!

      E Q
      by E Q
      Petition Organizer

      we have reached over 400 signatures and it's amazing how much we can all come together! i'm gaining
      faith in humanity again! thank you all and let's do something to change this!

    7. Reached 250 signatures
    8. trying to get as many signatures as possible

      E Q
      by E Q
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you all who have signed this petition. If you or someone you know and love have faced a similar issue than please pass this petition along or please write me a letter with a situation that applies to this cause, so I can present them alongside this petition to legislation. If anyone else has any other suggestions on changing this law, please contact me on my Facebook. I'm asking for help from my fellow person. There is strength in numbers, please take the time for this cause.

    9. Reached 100 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Robert Clemente ERIE, PA
      • 8 months ago

      I have been trying to find work since my release six months ago. This is a nation wide problem.

    • Susan Beresford GRAND JCT, CO
      • 8 months ago

      my husband is a felon

    • Dennis Hampton MORROW, GA
      • 8 months ago

      I personally experienced this.

    • Terry Morrow OKLAHOMA CITY, OK
      • 10 months ago

      Because having a chance at success in the pursuit of Happiness is a right to everyone.

    • Barbara Darling PITTSTON TWP, PA
      • 11 months ago

      Because it is.


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