Governor Northam designates May as Second Chance Month

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Governor Ralph Northam has issued a proclamation declaring May as Second Chance Month in Virginia.

During the month of May, the Governor and members of his administration will facilitate conversations and participate in events focused on criminal justice reform and reentry programming. The Northam administration is committed to ensuring that returning citizens have the support and resources they need to be successful and make positive contributions in their communities.

“Redemption is a fundamental American value, and I believe that returning citizens who have repaid their debt to society deserve a second chance,” said Governor Northam. “We recognize that former offenders face many challenges after their release—from finding a job to obtaining housing and healthcare. That is why my administration will remain focused on providing effective reentry services to transform lives and create safer communities for all Virginians.”

Last week, Governor Northam announced that he will not sign any new mandatory minimum sentence legislation for the remainder of his term in office. During the 2019 reconvened legislative session, Governor Northam proposed, and the General Assembly approved, an amendment to eliminate driver’s license suspensions because of unpaid court fines and fees. This policy change will help over 600,000 Virginians.

“Ninety-four percent of incarcerated offenders will one day be released, becoming our neighbors and members of our communities. Second Chance Month is an opportunity to raise awareness about the barriers people face as they reenter the community and we must support efforts that help returning citizens,” said Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian J. Moran. “We are excited to engage with community members and facilitate discussions about equitable policies and improving access to resources for the people who are returning to their communities after incarceration.”

For more information about Second Chance Month events with Secretary Moran, please visit the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Facebook page.

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