MIDLAND, MICH. — A bipartisan group of state lawmakers has introduced bills that would reform the way Michigan tracks people who have committed crimes. The proposed laws would make the expungement process — which removes wrongdoings from a person’s criminal record — simpler and easier to initiate.
The following statement can be attributed to David Guenthner, senior strategist for state affairs at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, in whole or part:
People who have committed crimes should be punished in a manner appropriate to the harm they have caused. But once people have completed their sentences and shown over time that they are dedicated to a law-abiding path, they deserve the opportunity to get out from under their past mistakes. Unfortunately, too many Michiganders continue to be deprived of jobs and suitable housing due to decades-old criminal convictions, many for minor offenses. Public safety is enhanced when those who have committed crimes don’t repeat or escalate that behavior. By offering ex-offenders in Michigan the potential to find better jobs and move on with their lives, the expungement bills provide a clear incentive for them to model upstanding behavior.
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