Community Relations Staff, Human Relations Commissioners Attend Expungement Fair

On Saturday, October 22, staff from the Community Relations Office and Human Relations Commissioners were on site at the Resource Fair of the first annual Expungement and Record Sealing Summit. The event was hosted by the Champaign County Circuit Clerk’s office and was the first of its kind in Illinois, outside of Cook County.  It was designed to help people with convictions – particularly juvenile records – who have trouble getting a job, and have few financial resources. Attorneys from the area volunteered their time assisting participants by viewing their criminal records and, based on those records, offering guidance on what remedies individuals could pursue. Full-service assistance was provided, complete with application, preparation, and filing for adult and juvenile criminal record expungement, sealing, along with alternative forms of relief. Eligible participants were then able to petition the court to have the Circuit Clerk seal the record, which would thereafter only be viewable by court order.  The court also allowed the Circuit Clerk’s office to waive the usual filing fee for those petitions. The event was held at Stone Creek Church in Urbana. Through the commitment and hard work of hundreds of volunteers and the patience and cooperation of hundreds of participants, the event was considered a success.