SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – To help more people access pathways to employment, state Rep. Arthur Turner, D-Chicago, recently introduced legislation to remove restrictions placed on people with a criminal history from being able to apply for professional licenses.

“One of the hardest jobs people can have is when they are unemployed and looking for work,” Turner said. “Looking for a job is extremely stressful and an emotional time for someone and it is only made worse when elected officials find ways to make it harder for people looking to start a new chapter of their life. If we truly want to address crime and violence in our communities, we have to start at making it easier for people from all walks of life to find work that will help them provide for their family.”

Turner has been working with advocates from across the city of Chicago to find ways to address policies that make it harder for people with criminal backgrounds to find a job. House Bill 3395 would allow individuals who have successfully completed their sentences to apply for a variety of jobs that are licensed by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulations. These jobs includes barbers, cosmetologists, interior designers, personal trainers, veterinary medicine, waste disposal, and much more. The legislation also makes sure after someone has their record expunged, state and federal agencies communicate with each other to ensure that their record is not revealed during background checks done when they are applying for jobs.

“We have created a vicious cycle in this country that punishes people who have made mistakes in their past from ever being able to find stable employment,” Turner said. “Until this cycle is ended, it should be no surprise that violence and crime occur in our community. I am excited to see all of the progress we have made over the past few years to improve the criminal justice system, but we still have a long way to go to make every person a valued and vital part of our community.”

For more information for this or other pieces of legislation Turner is working on, please contact his constituent service office at 312-277-4700 or arthurt@ilga.gov.

Rep Arthur TurnerRep Art Turner

9th District
Assistant Majority Leader

Visit Rep Arthur Turner website

Springfield Office:
109 Capitol Building
Springfield, IL 62706
(217) 782-8116
(217) 782-0888 FAX

District Office:
3849 West Ogden Avenue
Chicago, IL 60623
(773) 277-4700
(773) 277-4703 FAX