Read all the latest LAC News, Blogs, Events and Highlights here.

NY’s New Marijuana “Decriminalization” & Expungement Law Goes into Effect

For the first time ever, New York State has begun automatic expungement of certain marijuana convictions. Legal Action Center, which has long been advocating for automatic records clearance, created a fact sheet on the new decriminalization and expungement law along with the Legal Aid Society and Community Service Society.

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THROUGH GROUNDBREAKING CLASS ACTION, HUNDREDS OF NEW YORKERS HAVE OLD MARIJUANA CONVICTIONS SEALED

Legal Action Center was proud to partner with the Community Service Society, The Legal Aid Society, New York County Defender Services, Neighborhood Defender Service, pro bono counsel Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, and the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office to seal over 300 old marijuana convictions in New York City through a class action settlement. This groundbreaking effort will help to minimize the unfair obstacles to employment, housing, and other basic rights that individuals face due to past criminal records.

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NEW YORK BAR FOUNDATION AWARDS GRANT TO LAC

The New York Bar Foundation recently awarded a grant of $4,820 to the Legal Action Center in support of our New York Sealing and Voting Project. LAC thanks TYNBF for its ongoing support of this crucial work, which will surely have a positive impact on individuals, families, and communities throughout the State.

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Criminal Justice Reform Organizations Support Cuomo’s “mugshot ban”

Legal Action Center and other criminal justice advocacy organizations voice support for Governor Cuomo’s amendment to New York’s Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) that would ban the public disclosure of photos and booking information compiled by law enforcement agencies when they make arrests, mirroring policies already in place in federal agencies.

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LAC APPLAUDS GOVERNOR CUOMO’S 2019 JUSTICE AGENDA

The Legal Action Center commends Governor Andrew Cuomo on the landmark criminal justice and opioid and other substance use disorder (SUD) initiatives included in his 2019 Justice Agenda.

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New York Bar Foundation Grant to LAC

New York: The New York Bar Foundation recently presented a grant of $4,500 to the Legal Action Center to support …

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Protecting the Identity of Pardoned New Yorkers is the Right Thing to Do

26 undersigned criminal justice reform organizations strongly support Governor Cuomo’s pardon of 140 individuals who were convicted of one misdemeanor or non-violent felony when they were under the age of 18, and his decision to keep the names confidential. These individuals should now be allowed to move on with their lives without the stigma resulting from these convictions, which occurred when they were minors.

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Legal Action Center Statement on Imposing Work Requirements for Medicaid Eligibility

Yesterday, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through its Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), issued new guidance authorizing states to impose work requirements on people enrolled in Medicaid for their health care.

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The Passage of Sealing Legislation

While the decision to close Riker’s Island and passage of legislation to raise the age of criminal responsibility have been rightly trumpeted as major reforms of some of New York’s most deleterious criminal justice policies and practices, an extremely important piece of progressive legislation has gone largely unnoticed and uncelebrated: beginning in October, hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers will be eligible to have their old criminal convictions sealed.

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LAC Praises HUD Guidance Prohibiting Housing Discrimination Against People with Criminal Histories

LAC applauds the U.S. Department of Housing Urban Development’s (HUD) guidance that declares it a violation of the Fair Housing Act for landlords to have blanket bans that exclude people with criminal records. HUD’s new Guidance extends its earlier efforts to increase opportunities for people with criminal histories to obtain safe and secure housing that is critical to successful reintegration and full societal participation.

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