New California law will ensure people living with an old arrest or conviction record have a fair chance to access state-run caregiving jobs

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday signed into law a bill that will reduce application barriers for people living with an old conviction record seeking community care licensure from the California Department of Social Services. 

Assembly Bill 1720, authored by Assemblymember Chris Holden (D-Pasadena) and co-sponsored by Californians for Safety and Justice and the Occupational Licensing Coalition, streamlines the licensure process to ensure qualified people living with an old conviction record are not prohibited from securing employment. The new law does not make significant changes to the procedure for licensing foster family homes, certified family homes or resource family homes of a licensed foster family agency.

The following can be attributed to Tinisch Hollins, executive director of Californians for Safety and Justice: 

“We applaud Gov. Newsom for prioritizing California’s collective health and safety by enabling every Californian to contribute to our state and its economy. AB 1720 is a major win for all Californians. Our state – like so many across the nation – is dealing with a severe shortage of care workers and it is in no one’s interest to block qualified, rehabilitated people from access to these jobs. By giving people living with an old conviction record a fair chance at state-run caregiving jobs, we can increase economic stability and support a critical sector desperate for qualified workers. Old records that no longer reflect the reality of who someone is and what they have accomplished should not be a barrier to opportunity for families and communities – this only hampers our ability to progress towards a better, safer future.”