The Problem: Unemployment is the persistent factor most strongly correlated with recidivism. Obtaining gainful employment, however, is typically difficult for a person with a criminal history, particularly one who seeks to enter a vocation requiring state licenses. Routinely, the New York Department of State, which has the authority to grant the necessary licenses, denies them to individuals solely on the basis of their prior criminal convictions.
How NYCLA Helps
Project Restore provides pro bono representation to individuals who have been denied vocational licenses and who are challenging the denial. Advocacy includes representing license seekers in administrative law proceedings, appealing adverse Administrative Law Judge decisions to agency commissioners and when warranted, appealing commissioners’ decisions to the New York State Supreme Court via Article 78 Petitions.