Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora on Tuesday announced the city would relax a seven-year waiting period on hiring individuals with criminal records.
“Returning citizens are very much part of our community, and unless we get them into productive lives, we need to help them continue to rehabilitate,” Gusciora said. “Rehabilitation doesn’t occur when you open a cell door or let somebody. Rehabilitation, the real work, begins with getting them housing, getting their feet off the ground and getting them into a job.”
The change does not impact those convicted of violent crimes, first or second-degree crimes, domestic abuse, sex offenses and crimes involving a victim who is a minor.
The prohibition, which has been in place for more than 20 years has hurt Trenton’s residents, Gusciora said.
“In the city, when I go around and I talk to people in the neighborhoods or stakeholders … you see real damage from that policy,” Gusciora said. “I’ve talked to ex-offenders that say ‘just give me a job,’ and the best I can answer is ‘I’ll see you in seven years.’”