Newark, NJ- April 26, 2013. Ban the Box NJ, a statewide grassroots campaign advocating for the passage of the New Jersey Opportunity to Compete Act, will host a rally on Wednesday, May 1, 2013 at 1:00 PM on the front steps of the State House in Trenton, New Jersey.
The New Jersey Opportunity to Compete Act makes the job application process fairer for all New Jerseyans by moving inquiries into a candidate's criminal background to after a candidate has been interviewed and offered a conditional offer of employment. By making the job process fairer, the Act also increases public
safety and decreases government spending on corrections by reducing the number of individuals cycling through the criminal justice system. The bill also improves the economy by giving more New Jerseyans the ability to earn an income to stimulate the economy.
The sponsoring legislators of the Opportunity to Compete Act, Senator Sandra B. Cunningham and Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson-Coleman will speak at the rally along with Cornell William Brooks of the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice, Micah Khan of the Integrated Justice Alliance, representatives from Building One New Jersey and several others. Ban the Box NJ will also submit a petition with signatures from members of various New Jersey communities to the Law and Public Safety Committee, where the legislation is expected to make its first appearance in early May. The rally will show the wide community support for the legislation immediately before this important committee hearing.
Cornell William Brooks, Esq. noted "It has been amazing to see this grassroots student-led organization get involved with this issue and take their advocacy to the next level. For the hundreds of thousands of individuals in New Jersey with criminal records-- most of which are minor and long ago-- this rally gives them hope that opportunity is not just a word we say when we want to feel patriotic but rather that the 'opportunity to compete' is a fundamental part of America's DNA."
For more information about the rally, please contact Ban the Box NJ's Director of Communications, Brandon Holt, at [email protected].