NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – This past year, the Tennessee Black Caucus passed seven pieces of legislation aimed at reforming the state’s criminal justice laws.
Governor Bill Haslam is expected to hold a ceremonial bill signing on Thursday on the reform package.
The Black Caucus said the bills include:
- The “ban the Box” bill that prevents the state of Tennessee from asking a job applicant about their criminal history early in the interview process.
- A bill that makes it easier to have a criminal record expunged in cases of mistaken identity.
- A bill that creates a task force to study new approaches to the administration of juvenile justice.
- A bill that requires the Department of Labor and Workforce to study new programs designed to provide jobs to aid in the successful reentry of individuals in the workforce who have been convicted of a felony.
Chair Rep. Brenda Gilmore said this is just the beginning of the process.
“We made some real progress this year, but there is much more work to be done. We will continue to gather information over the summer that will help shape next year’s reform package and will give us a road map for helping not just Tennessee’s African-American population, but the entire state,” she explained.
The bill signing ceremony will take place in the War Memorial Auditorium beginning at 10:45 a.m.