Confirmed victory
Petitioning Members of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors

The Fair Chance Campaign: Reforming Housing and Employment Background Checks in San Francisco

Like Cheauvon, many people in San Francisco face barriers to employment and housing based on past arrests and convictions. Although they may have great qualifications, their applications are often screened out at the initial stages, leaving them with few job or housing options. Yet, research shows that access to jobs and housing is linked to successful community reintegration and reduced recidivism.

Please sign this petition in support of the Fair Chance Campaign to reform the background check process for employment and city-subsidized affordable housing programs in San Francisco.

The proposed legislation will allow applicants, like Cheauvon, with past arrests and conviction records a fair chance to demonstrate their qualifications as an employee or tenant, while also balancing the needs of employers and housing providers. There are ten states and over 50 local jurisdictions across the United States that have embraced this type of policy reform aimed at supporting economic self-sufficiency. It’s time for San Francisco to become a leader on this issue and take reform to the next level.

Specifically, the legislation will:

- Allow a background check inquiry only after an applicant is provided a conditional offer of employment or tenancy;

- Allow consideration only of an applicant’s prior convictions (not arrests) falling within a defined “look -back” period;

- Require a reason for any denial, along with an opportunity to offer evidence of rehabilitation; and

- Allow a denial only when the conviction is directly related to the job or housing.

Please sign this petition to help individuals like Cheauvon gain economic self-sufficiency so they can take care of their families, contribute to their communities, and realize their full potential. Your support will help make San Francisco’s families and communities stronger and safer.

We anticipate that Supervisor Jane Kim will be introducing background check reform legislation this fall, and we’re calling on the people of San Francisco to stand up and show that this legislation is needed to help our communities thrive.

Campaign Sponsors: National Employment Law Project, Legal Services for Prisoners with Children, All of Us or None, Community Housing Partnership, Coalition on Homelessness, Jobs for Justice, and the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights of the San Francisco Bay Area

For more information, check out our Facebook page or contact us at (415) 563-3205x115/(415) 415-625-7049

Letter to
Members of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors
I support Supervisor Jane Kim’s new legislation to standardize guidelines for considering background checks by San Francisco employers and affordable housing providers.

As many as 200,000 San Franciscans face barriers to employment and housing based on past arrests and convictions. Although they may have great qualifications, their applications are often screened out at the initial stages, leaving them with few job or housing options. Yet, research shows that access to jobs and housing is linked to successful community reintegration and reduced recidivism.

The proposed legislation will allow applicants with past arrests and conviction records a fair chance to demonstrate their qualifications as an employee or tenant, while also balancing the needs of employers and housing providers.

There are ten states and over 50 local jurisdictions across the United States that have embraced this type of policy reform aimed at supporting economic self-sufficiency. It’s time for San Francisco to become a leader on this issue and take reform to the next level.

Please support Supervisor Kim’s new legislation.