DETROIT — A bipartisan group of legislators announced a plan today to expand Michigan’s expungement laws to give thousands of residents with old, low-level criminal convictions an opportunity for a fresh start. The six-bill package includes legislation to broaden the eligibility for expungements, shorten the waiting period for expungement eligibility and establish an automatic expungement system for certain offenses. In response, state Rep. Joe Tate (D-Detroit), who attended the press conference, issued the following statement:

“There is no need to continue punishing someone after they have already repaid their debt to society. Allowing a clear pathway to expungement helps those who seek to better themselves, even if they have made mistakes in the past. Expungement helps hardworking Michiganians earn gainful employment to support themselves and their families, lowering recidivism rates, increasing the talent pool of our workforce and strengthening our state’s economy.”