- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 11, 2014

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Attorney General Doug Gansler says letting ex-convicts shield their criminal records from prospective employers could be a major step toward making Maryland’s prison re-entry rate plummet.

A pending Senate bill would allow shielding for 13 nonviolent misdemeanors, such as drug possession and trespassing. If the convicted person had no new offenses within five years after the sentence was completed, employers and colleges wouldn’t be able to look at these criminal records.

Gansler testified on the bill Tuesday before the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee. Gansler says Maryland’s prison re-entry rate is around 46 percent.

Sen. Jamie Raskin, D-Montgomery, is sponsoring the bill.

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