The Vermont Senate has given its unanimous support to legislation that's designed to improve employment opportunities for people who have a criminal record in their past. Backers of the bill say it's needed because many people who've been convicted of a crime never get past the application process if they have to initially disclose this information to an employer.
The bill is a top priority for Vermont Legal Aid. Staff Attorney Chris Curtis notes that employers can still ask about a person's criminal record during the interview process.
"This allows them to get before the employer if they're selected as qualified on their merits and be able to explain something that might be in their past that really no longer applies to their ability to do a job," Curtis says.