A Legislated Spent Convictions Scheme for Victoria: Recommendations for Reform

Author: 
Rights Advocacy Project

The introduction of laws to govern how convictions are removed from a criminal record is a simple and straightforward reform. All other jurisdictions in Australia have laws that provide for the removal of certain less serious convictions from the records of past offenders who have not gone on to reoffend. This goes to the heart of our criminal justice system. Offenders should be punished appropriately but they should also be given the opportunity to actively contribute to society once that punishment has been delivered. By allowing minor findings of guilt to remain on records, and not making it unlawful to discriminate against someone because of an irrelevant criminal record, the ability for past offenders to contribute to society through employment or other means is limited.

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