RICHMOND COUNTY, GA (WFXG) - The Augusta Public Library was packed with people on July 9th for a press conference about the Record Restriction Summit that will take place on October 20th.
Local and state officials were there, explaining the program to residents, and urging them to put in an application.
Sheriff Richard Roundtree said, "It'd be a shame if it costs you nothing but five minutes of your time and you don't take advantage of it."
Other officials shared the Sheriff's opinion.
They emphasized that this is a free program and that if it helps even a small amount of people who were in the crowd today, it'd be pushing the community forward. Solicitor General Omeeka Loggins said, "If we can help at least half the people in this room, I think that means that what we're doing is worth the time."
Sheriff Roundtree added, "If they can get their records expunged and sealed, and go out and find gainful employment, then it's worth it."
Karen Denham told us that she was arrested almost 20 years ago, and now has trouble finding work. She said she is able to find housekeeping jobs, but that every time she puts in an application, she doesn't even receive a callback.
Denham said, "(If I am able to get my record cleared) I will have the best closure. I'll be able to sleep better at night knowing that when I put in a job application, they'll be able to call."
She said the relief that this program could give her family is unfathomable.
Other folks are in the same boat as Denham.
Dominique Manor said, "There's things of my past following me from 25 years ago."
Ghosts from the past that are preventing them from gaining employment. This summit could help some of these people.
There are some stipulations to who is eligible for the record restriction:
- The person must have a felony or misdemeanor arrest that did not result in a conviction, or a misdemeanor youthful offender conviction where all terms of probation were completed.
- The arrest must have occurred in Richmond County.
- The person must have a valid driver's license or state ID.
Officials recognize that everyone who puts in an application will not be accepted, but they still encourage everyone to apply.
You can find the application here.