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April 19, 2024 28 mins

Sheena Meade On Getting Arrested Over A $87 Bounced Check, The Clean Slate Initiative, + More

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Speaker 1 (00:03):
Angela yee.

Speaker 2 (00:03):
I'm Angela ye. And what an honor to have my
sister Shana Mede is here with me today. How are you?

Speaker 1 (00:10):
I'm good.

Speaker 3 (00:10):
Thank you so much for having me and during Second
Chance Month and able to lift up this issue my story.

Speaker 1 (00:17):
I'm excited.

Speaker 2 (00:17):
Yeah, the CEO of the Clean Slate Initiative, and like
you said, it is second Chance Month and there's so
many things that we need to talk about. I mean,
let's get started with your story though, Shana, and why
you are, why you have the Clean Slate Initiative, and
why it's necessary.

Speaker 1 (00:31):
You know, my story is not unique.

Speaker 3 (00:34):
There are over one hundred and fourteen million Americans and
they have and of restored conviction, and that's one in
three Americans.

Speaker 1 (00:41):
And I'm one of those people.

Speaker 3 (00:43):
So in two thousand and four, at that time, I
was living in Florida, single mom, trying to make ends
meet on government assistant.

Speaker 1 (00:50):
And I tell.

Speaker 3 (00:51):
People I was that type of broke where if you
got gas in the car, your car insurance is not
up to date, right, or either you got insurance but
you don't got no gas.

Speaker 2 (01:00):
Make some choices.

Speaker 3 (01:00):
You gotta make some choices. And I had to go
to the store at that time. Back in the day,
we used to write checks just before we had apple
pan and stuff, and we write a check over that
mount and so I went to get groceries for the
kids and enough money so I get some gas and
car and the check was eighty seven dollars and twenty
six cents.

Speaker 1 (01:16):
That check had bounced.

Speaker 3 (01:17):
You know, I was young, not really understanding financial literacy,
and also like really believe in God that the check
wouldn't get into their account right until you'd.

Speaker 2 (01:25):
Be like, let me get this money in and then
it'll cover this. But I understand what you're saying, right,
And also you're not thinking that's a crime.

Speaker 3 (01:33):
Right, or I'm just thinking I'm trying to like juggle,
Like if I buy the groceries today on Wednesday, my
direct deposit to be there hopefully before the check get there.
And the check got returned. It basically met the bank
with no money in it. And two months later, girl,
the cops is knocking at the door. The kids are like, Mommy,
the cops are at the door. And I've never been
in trouble, never had any engagement with the police. I'm like,

(01:55):
they must be at the wrong house or whatever. Answer
the door and then like she and we have a
warrant for your arrest for a worthless check for eighty
seven dollars and twenty six cents eighty seven dollars and
twenty six cents that I had wrote to the grocery store.
And that day, like I was shocked, And because that's wild,
because that's such a small, like in consideration of what

(02:16):
you would consider to be a reason to actually get
arrested and go to jail. That doesn't feel like an
amount like that feels like something that's like, look, you're
in trouble, you need to pay this. Like maybe that's
a notification, Maybe that's some type of like we send
you something. You gotta pay this or you're gonna have
to pay these additional penalties and fees. I believe if
if my name was not Sheena when that paper went

(02:38):
to the district's attorney's office, they would not have signed
it to say, go issue and a warrant. And this
is Florida. To be clear, this is in Florida. Okay,
well all things go to hell.

Speaker 1 (02:46):
Yes, in Florida. But it's hope there to be clear,
to get clear.

Speaker 3 (02:49):
And yeah, so I you know, I did a TED
talk last year, and I before I used to tell
my story, I used to tell the story like you know,
it was under one hundred dollars. And before I did
the TED talk, they made you fact check everything. So
I had to go back and pull up the paperwork,
and when I saw them mount it just got me
angry again.

Speaker 1 (03:06):
I got I got upset.

Speaker 3 (03:08):
I got emotional because I'm thinking about what other women
or men like got locked up for something like this.
And I read that it said, in good faith, we're
issuing this warrant for eighty seven dollars and twenty six cents.

Speaker 1 (03:19):
And then recently I went back to go pick up.

Speaker 3 (03:21):
The arrest report online and it saw that I had
a five hundred dollar bond. Because you know, I try
to like put that out in my mind and didn't
realize it was a barrier.

Speaker 1 (03:29):
Really.

Speaker 3 (03:29):
Back then, I was like, let me pay these people
their money back, let me get done. Have the borrow
money to pay back the check and the fees for
getting locked up.

Speaker 2 (03:38):
He's like, I already didn't have the eighty seven dollars
and twenty so.

Speaker 1 (03:41):
Yeah, said, I got paid.

Speaker 3 (03:42):
But since y'all think I'm read, let me go get
some more money to pay off these fees and get
bonded out, and I thought it was over. But it
wasn't until I started to try to enroll in college
to better myself. You know that I was met with
the application accent have you ever been arrested or convicted?
And then I remembered way I got this thing, And
then I had to go pull up the paperwork or

(04:03):
whether I'm trying to rent a house or home and
get rejected, which I have even within the last six years.
Got rejected with all the things that I've done for
the community or my husband have done, or even jobs.
And so the true sentence usually don't start for people
who have an arrested conviction until after they served their
time or paid their debt.

Speaker 2 (04:23):
Yeah, that's what makes it so difficult to even like, Look,
I got my real my real estate license. Recently one
of my friends got his too, and he has a record,
and so now you have to get permission and get
a letter from this person and that person, get like
and have these recommendations. It makes it a lot more
difficult to be able to even get licenses certified in
certain things too.

Speaker 3 (04:43):
And we call that collecteral consequences, and there are over
forty four thousand of those for people who have barriers
to get what we call occupational licenses to be a relator,
to even do cosmetology, to barber. Now, we all know
some brothers on the block or sisters that been maybe incarcerated,
and they picked up their their trade while they was
locked up to do here barburing. They come home, try

(05:04):
to make better of themselves, get a business, and then
they's still locked out. And I think that's the narrative
that folks don't understand, Like we have family members and
low ones who get hit up by the system, and
we're like, we're telling them to come home, get you
a job, pull yourself up by the bootstraps, go to school.

Speaker 2 (05:19):
But then they make it so hard to be able,
but it make it so hard for them to do it.
They when you ended up, when they came to your house,
it weren't for your arrest. Did they take you right then?
Or oh what happened because you had the kids in
the house.

Speaker 1 (05:31):
Oh listen, I was so green. I was real. I
was you would have thought I called like a case case.
I was crying. I was like, can y'all meet me?

Speaker 3 (05:39):
Down the street and like and then put me in
a car. They was like no, Like the one cop
was trying to have compassion. The other cop was probably frustrated,
Like they probably was just frustrated, like why the hell
were we.

Speaker 1 (05:48):
Even out here picking this woman up.

Speaker 3 (05:50):
I didn't know all that then, and I always say
thank God for the nosy neighbor to always be like
looking out. It was this lady who was looking at
her back door, and you know, she had house full
of like kids, and she came over and got my
kids for me, because my.

Speaker 2 (06:04):
Goodness, because what would have happened if the kids are
in the house they're taking you and they're young because
you were young too.

Speaker 3 (06:10):
Yeah, and all my kids. Again, I was a young mom.
You know, I was a teenage mom. And this is
in my like mid twenties. So I had four kids.
Now I was the kids were like twenty. I was
twenty something years old, had four children, all under the
age of like nine, right or eight? Yea, And yeah,
she came and got the kids and then had to
call my mom. And now, when I think back, five
hundred dollars is not a small amount, right, You're definitely not.

(06:35):
And you gotta call somebody at jail. And my mom
used to always tell me, if you ever get locked up,
don't call me. That's the thing, you know, we hear
family say. But this wasn't with it such. She came
and got me, you know, so I had to call
my family to come get me. But I think about
even now today, like how many women and men are
still behind bars because they don't have the money to
come somebody come get them out, or support or what

(06:56):
happened with their children.

Speaker 2 (06:58):
So I was fortunate, you know, I'm glad you up
because Bill reform has been a huge topic and we
see it twisted from all different narratives, right because that
make it seem like these dangerous criminals are back on
the street. But then sometimes it's something that is first
of all, you know, people are sitting there they haven't
even gotten before a judge yet, and they don't have
the money to get out, and they sit there for

(07:19):
like long periods of time where anything could happen. You know,
we all saw the Khalif Broudest story and what happened
with him. But when you think about Bill reform and
how that does benefit some people, because it's not like
if you murdered somebody you're going to get out with
no bill. That's not what that's for. That's for something
like what happened with you.

Speaker 3 (07:36):
Yeah, there are many other cases where you know, I'm thinking,
you know, can somebody call my employer to let them know,
you know, if I had to stay the night, Like,
who's making that call? There are so many people who
are losing jobs, opportunities to children, and the system is
just swallow them up.

Speaker 1 (07:52):
And so these are the things that.

Speaker 3 (07:53):
We're trying to lift up in Second Chance Month that
you know, we have to like unravel a lot of
these issues that came from mass incarceration.

Speaker 2 (08:00):
All right, So then after that, tell me what happened. Yeah,
you know, I just want to hear like some of
the things that happened. I'm sure that's horrifying for the
kids to see too.

Speaker 1 (08:08):
You know.

Speaker 3 (08:09):
I it's funny because I didn't really start really talking
about the story until recently, until I started leading Clean Slate,
and then when I did my Ted talk, I really
started leading with that story. I think that I didn't
really understand how my record was holding me back. For
a minute, I was just thought this just was the
way things was because I was young black woman, I'm

(08:31):
a mom. I'm just like, okay, the cars ain't decked
up for me. But it wasn't ntil late in life
that I realized, wait a minute, it is my record
that is holding me back, especially when I start putt application.
So after that, you know, moving on fast forward. Now
I'm trying to roll in college. I got married to
my love of my life, Desmond Mead, in twenty twelve,

(08:51):
and when I met him, Desmond shared his story that
he was formally incarcerated and he was looking to restore
voting rights and he had this big dream that you know,
he'll be able to vote one day and be able
to like get one point four other million people in
Florida to write to vote. And that's when I really
start understanding like what this issue was, like the barriers
that people had, because we would go out there to

(09:11):
try to get folks who were forming in cars, rated,
excited about voting, and the it was like, I can't
get a job. Like I hear that that's cool, but
I can't if I can't feed my family. If I
can't if I have nowhere to live, how's well, I'm
gonna help me. So we had to do a lot
of education, and matter of fact, I think even cover
that story in Florida during election times, you know, Florida,
because that was definitely on you know, when people were voting,

(09:32):
that was on the ballot, yes, to make sure that
they would restore voting rights.

Speaker 2 (09:36):
And that was a bipartisan effort. If I'm not mistaken,
it was.

Speaker 1 (09:38):
Yes. So I took a place.

Speaker 3 (09:39):
I took a piece out a dozen playbook, okay, and
took the piece of being like people over politics, like bipartisanship,
like it's about people, it's not about it's not about politics.
It's not about Democrats, Republicans. And when you got one
to three people, like over one hundred and fourteen million people,
that's hitting close to home. And I don't care what
your political status is. And so yeah, so took a

(10:00):
piece out of his book. But during that time, you know,
just a little bit more about my story. When so
Desmond's like running his campaign twenty sixteen, I decided to
run for office.

Speaker 1 (10:12):
You know, ran for office. It wasn't successful.

Speaker 3 (10:14):
I realized now that guy had a bigger a something
bigger for me and just.

Speaker 2 (10:20):
For people listening. A lot of times when people run
for office and they're in position now they didn't win
initially and whatever offices they were running for, because that
does happen all the time, and you learn a lot
from that because you know, you end up doing other
things or getting into another office of running again and
winning just like our president did too, by the way, Okay,
but go ahead, yeah.

Speaker 3 (10:39):
And I mean I encourage specially women to run for office,
like you know that. Yeah, So like go run, like
be that spoke person. And the reason why I ran
is like I'm tired of begging people to do the
things they need to do.

Speaker 2 (10:49):
And at a local level, like I don't want to vote,
I don't want to be involved. I don't like politics. Well,
if there's things that you feel like need to be changed,
then maybe you need to run for office, yes, and
so that you really care and that you really it
instead of just tweeting about it.

Speaker 1 (11:01):
Right, And I tell people it's not about politics.

Speaker 3 (11:03):
I was sitting with a sister who was doing my hair,
and she was like, you know, I did vote before,
but I don't know what was happening. And the way
I break it down to people when I was running
for office, I was going to the young moms. I
was like, you like that, wigcheck. I was like that
wigcheck helping you write. I was like, do you know
that the federal government puts this in a budget and
then the state has a say in that. Like so

(11:23):
we have to educate people around issues and not politicians.
And I think that's where people get voted apathy around
because it's like it's always caught up about the candidate,
but it's the issue. And we saw that with Amendment four.
We had over five million people come out to vote
yes on four because they believed in second chances, they
believed in redemption.

Speaker 1 (11:39):
It was an issue that they could relate with.

Speaker 2 (11:41):
I remember when that was on the ballot too in Florida,
because you know, we look at Florida like, man, they
rolling back. You know, a lot of rights there. You
can't read certain books in the school. They're banning this,
they're bannon that. So that was an issue that I
was like, is this really going to pass? Because I
was watching that to see and it was amazing. I
remember how exciting it was for people when this act
passed across the country.

Speaker 3 (12:02):
Everybody felt like they was a part of it because
people from all across the country was watching it and
because of the work that Floyda Rice Restoration Doesn't Meet
has done that I was a part of. They got
nominated for Nobel Peace Prize last year and so it's
been beautiful that now that people have the right to vote,
but now we are seeing folks who are forming incarcerated,
who are directly impacted, really stepping up understanding the power

(12:25):
that they have because they're a big voting block. They're
a big block in our community. And so yeah, so
I started to do the work there with Desmond. He
asked me to put on a women's retreat for forming
incarcerated women to get them active in the community. And
at that time, I was like, you can't ask people
to transform the community when they got to go through
personal transformation.

Speaker 1 (12:46):
And so we did like this women's retreat.

Speaker 3 (12:48):
And I got to learn a lot about what other
directly impacted women went through, like that process, or what
they were going through before they became incarcerated, which a
lot of them were also victims of crime and stuff
like that, and that really put the bug in me.
Since then and working on that campaign, and then in
twenty twenty year, I was approach around clean slate after

(13:08):
we passed them and four and I knew that Desmond
had a blueprint around working across political hours and really
leading with your story, and it really helped me. Like
it was tough talking about my story because you asked
about where my kids were at with that. I never
had a conversation with my kids right about that. And
I think just even in black culture and families, we
don't talk about poking and raiway, when they get locked up,

(13:29):
we just like they went away.

Speaker 1 (13:30):
We don't visit, we don't send the letters.

Speaker 2 (13:33):
And it also impacts how you feel about the cops
because imagine they're watching this happen their mom, and they're young,
like you said, under nine years old, and they see
this happen. Now, what do I think about police when
I see it?

Speaker 3 (13:44):
Yeah, because that was their first interaction with the police,
that they're taking my mom away. And so my kids
are older now, so we really never talked about that moment.
I think there's been a lot of great things that
we've been able to do to kind of suppress some
of that, or maybe it was they did understand, but.

Speaker 2 (14:02):
Yeah, now I want to talk about legislation and how
people can actually make a difference because sometimes we can
talk about what's happening, but also knowing that you can
actually do something about it. Because people feel helpless. You
might feel like, all right, I just can't get any work.
I can't get this to happen, I can't get housing,
I can't get anything. What can I do? You know,
and so I want to talk about what you've been

(14:24):
doing and how you've been able to actually make change
when it comes to legislation.

Speaker 1 (14:28):
Well, what I will tell anyone.

Speaker 3 (14:32):
Is that we all have a voice, and your issue matters,
and if you want to see change, you got to
be the change, right and the first step is being active,
typically engaged, making sure that you're voting and making sure
that your voice is heard. I like to say I
turn my pain into purpose. So, whether it was the
issue of me having to depend on government assistance so
I could feed my children, those wig checks, my children

(14:53):
being able to have access to early education with his start,
those are issues that I advocated for because I know
how to impact it my life and my children's life.

Speaker 1 (15:01):
Whether it was for housing I.

Speaker 3 (15:03):
Was, I had Section eight and I know what that
was able to do for me, to give me a
step up. So I navigate for that. On the federal level,
I think the first thing is us to make sure
that we're educating people around how they can utilize their
voice at a local level. And I say all politics
start locals. So you have your school board who's making
decisions around who take books out of schools or not,

(15:24):
or your state legislature. But the work that we've been
doing at clean Slate has been a beautiful testament of
how people could come around folks around redemption and second chances.
And we've been able to pass legislation or have legislation
adopted in over twelve states across the country clean slate
laws meaning that once you have served your time, remain

(15:48):
crime free. If the station is that you're eligible for
your offense to get cleared off your record.

Speaker 1 (15:53):
What we're doing is automating that process.

Speaker 3 (15:55):
Almost think about your credit We always for that seven
years to that thing to drop off.

Speaker 2 (15:59):
Our credit I know has dropped off.

Speaker 1 (16:01):
Right, feel real good this week.

Speaker 2 (16:02):
I looked at my scar, I.

Speaker 3 (16:03):
Said, okay, yeah, checking at credit card was like that,
you know that in seven years it should come off.
So the legislation basically says that after a certain amount
of time that that will be removed, that the burden
is no longer on you. What is the process of
doing that, because I know I've read in these notes
that more than thirty million people eligible are eligible to
get the.

Speaker 2 (16:22):
Record clearance, but like ten percent of people.

Speaker 3 (16:25):
Do it, because I mean, every state is different, so
just about every state has a mechanism to get your
record cleared. And so for myself, like in Florida, I'm
not eligible at this time. It's so bureaucratic, you know,
so much red tape to get your record clear. But
in some states, you know, you basically have to petition,
You have to go go find your paperwork, go back

(16:45):
to the county where the offense was made, have to
probably go get a DA to sign off or judge
to sign off. In Louisiana, you have to pay up
the five hundred dollars per offence just to get cleared,
and you may be only eligible to get one thing
off your record. Doing is removing the red tape that
once the like if the person is eligible.

Speaker 1 (17:04):
That this is not for all offenses.

Speaker 3 (17:06):
These are offenses that the state has already usually said that.

Speaker 1 (17:09):
Are eligible or he's to be eligible, have to.

Speaker 3 (17:12):
Be eligible, and that it will come off your record
in a certain amount.

Speaker 2 (17:15):
Of time, so you're still not eligible.

Speaker 1 (17:17):
I'm still like in Florida right now, you can want
to get so done?

Speaker 3 (17:20):
I know.

Speaker 2 (17:21):
Wild to me, So wait, this was how long ago?

Speaker 1 (17:23):
Did this happened? Twenty years?

Speaker 2 (17:25):
It'd be twenty years next month A bounce check for
eighty seven dollars and twenty six cents, and you still
have this on my record as a conviction on your record,
and you're still not eligible.

Speaker 3 (17:34):
I still don't have a clean slate. But I realize
that that again, that's wild to me. It is very wild,
but it also reminds me like again, I take the
spiritual journey on. It's like that eighty seven dolls and
twenty six cents. I was able last year to get
seventy five million dollars for our organization to help there's
a purpose, write a purpose to help millions of people

(17:56):
to get their record clear. And just a few months
ago we saw that the New York signed clean Slate
into law, were over two and a half million people.
When that law goes into effect, two and a half
million people would have a second chance for real, for real.
And so it's a beautiful thing. So I'm still working
and not stopping until we get all fifty states on
a pathway for record clearance, and that's including Florida.

Speaker 2 (18:17):
I mean, I think that's amazing though, that this happened
to you and you found a purpose for what it
is that you wanted to do out of this and
maybe and I know it sucks because at the time
it was feeling it prevented a lot of things, but
at the same time it brought a lot of blessings
for other people.

Speaker 3 (18:31):
Yeah, and I you know, again, at that time when
I was going through it, I didn't really realize at
the time really what I was going through, But it
was through the journey of meeting other directly impacted people
who's also doing the work across the country, you know,
passing reforms where there's like Jay Jordan who worked really
hard on getting this law passed in California. California passed
it as well clean Slate daral Agason, Like, there's so

(18:54):
many people that's doing this work across the country trying
to help reforms who are formally incarcerated, people who have
a lived experience. Meeting these type of folks on this
journey has really helped me really have ownership around this
issue in my story and how can help others?

Speaker 2 (19:09):
And when it comes to we have elections coming up,
as we y'all know, and so where do because this
is you know something that you're well versed in. So
where do some of our people who are going to
be running for office stand on this? Like if we
look at Joe Biden and we look at Donald Trump,
we know that obviously Joe Biden has proclaimed April as
second Chance Month. Again, where does Donald Trump stand on

(19:31):
this issue? I just want to make sure because sometimes
you hear different things, but we want to know as
we're thinking about when it's time to vote, right, where
do our candidates stand on these issues?

Speaker 3 (19:40):
Yeah? Well, I will say for anyone to always research
the candidates, right, don't don't take don't take my say,
your say, anybody say. Research your candidates for yourself or
where they stand at. And that's why it's important for
people to be engaged. Listen to debates, listen to conversations,
see what laws they have passed. Just as Joe Biden
did a pri proclamation to be honest, Donald Trump did

(20:02):
a proclamation for a second Chance Month as well. Obama
did a proclamation for second chances as well. And so
I think right now that just shows that this is
bigger than politics, that is people over politics, that people
are realizing that this issue of criminal justice have touched
so many people they can't ignore it. And so when

(20:22):
it comes to this issue, we should make sure that
no matter what candidate is up there, that we hold
them accountable. Whoever you voted for for the last time,
make sure that there's still on the same side you know,
of your issues, whether it's criminal justice, well it's healthcare,
whether it's reproductive rights, whether it's marriage equality, like wherever
you at and the things that you care about, hold
your electis eligible. But you know, I would say, when

(20:44):
it comes to the two forefront candidates, I'm going to
always ask them where they're at around people getting the
record clear. You know, on the federal level, right now,
it's hard for people to even get their record clearers.
We have a bill called the Clean Slate Act that
has been gaining bipartisan support, meaning Republicans and Democrats has
been signing on. But the administration has a duty to

(21:06):
make sure that people don't have to have high paid
attorneys or high pockets to get a pardon or know
somebody in the White House. You know, we got second
chance a month coming up. Angela and Desmond. You talk
about Desmond, you you you know both for Montserrat folks.

Speaker 2 (21:19):
You know, got got out to Mansrat. Everybody listening because
by the way, people from Montererrat love when they get
a shout out. Yes, it doesn't happen too often, so
shout out to Monsterirat. Desmond Mead is also got roots
in Monterrat. Yeah, my husband got rus Monceirat. But Desmond Mead,
who led Amendment four to work. You just talked about
time one hundred Nobel Peace Prize still does not have

(21:39):
his have a second chance, He does not have a pardon.

Speaker 3 (21:42):
He got all these accolades. You know, we we went
to the White House. Uh, we got invited to the
White House. You got to vite it to the White
House a few months ago. Then got denied access to
the White House. That is yeah, that is too because
they vet you out before you come there.

Speaker 2 (21:56):
So you got to invite you knowing why they're inviting
you and what you stand for, and then tell you
you can't commit.

Speaker 1 (22:02):
Listen.

Speaker 3 (22:03):
So then we got into the White House a Black
History month and I felt like jay Z with the
Beyonce around all these Grammys and the Wars. I went
to the President and was like, listen, he got all
these awards, but he didn't get the ultimate, like like,
what's up with his pardon?

Speaker 1 (22:16):
So what I'm trying to say is that there's not.

Speaker 3 (22:18):
Even an easy route for folks who have shown that
they have contributed their life commitment to even democracy to
get a second chance.

Speaker 1 (22:27):
So that means that the system is broken.

Speaker 3 (22:28):
So what I'm saying is that whoever is in high office,
we need to make sure that there are laws that
give people a pathway to being able to get the
record clear, whether through a pardon, through a petition.

Speaker 1 (22:39):
So that's what we had the Clean Slate Act.

Speaker 2 (22:41):
For, all right, And how can people support If they're
listening today and they're like, what can I do to
make sure that I help elevate this message and make
sure that we help get this across off fifty states.

Speaker 3 (22:51):
Yes, So the first thing I would say is think
about the time that you ask for a second chance.
Just sit in that moment. Think about that moment that
maybe you, just by the grace of God, did not
get arrested where you could have or the time that
you did in the case got dropped. Think about those moments,
think about your low ones and family members, talk about
it at your dinner table. That's the first thing that

(23:12):
you know, we got to change the narrative about who's impacted.

Speaker 1 (23:15):
It's not the others.

Speaker 3 (23:16):
It's our families, it's our loved ones, it's our clergyman,
it's our preachers, it's some of our politicians.

Speaker 1 (23:21):
Another thing I'll say, go to Cleanslate Initiative dot org.

Speaker 3 (23:24):
Follow us online, Go and see if one of your
states have passed clean slave We have twelve states. Maybe
you eligible, Maybe you have a clean slate. Michigan has
a past clean slate. There's one of our states where
on day one when they passed it, over a million
people records got cleared. Wow, and so you may be
still living like you have a record when your record

(23:45):
may be clear. So I would say going to the website,
talk to your local legislators, your state legislators, your members
of Congress.

Speaker 1 (23:52):
Make your voice be heard. You know.

Speaker 2 (23:53):
I love when businesses and organizations also are supportive of
people who are justice impacted and making sure that they're
high hearing, you know, people and providing housing for people
who are just as impacted. All so that is so
important for people to be able to feel I think
the confidence that they need to fail. Yeah.

Speaker 3 (24:10):
JP Morgan has been a big supporter of JP Morgan
Chase on second Chances. They just had a big event
in Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania was the first state to pass clean slave.
Were actually having our conference there this June.

Speaker 1 (24:23):
And.

Speaker 3 (24:24):
They have found that they even have a call center
that is dedicated higher and directly impacted people, and they
said this has been their most successful workforce for ours,
like turnover work, what is it like there worth work
etic and just how they're showing up and that you know,
people do want to work. So when we have employers
saying that people don't they can't find employees, we have

(24:47):
seven over seventy two hundred million people that is ready
to go to work, but maybe your practices is keeping
them out.

Speaker 2 (24:52):
And so something for our business owners to take into
consideration from you telling us those numbers right now.

Speaker 3 (24:57):
Yeah, and if JP Morgan the bank who's federally regulated,
you can hire directly impacted people. I know y'all can't
y'all Okay, all right, and how when is this going
to happen for you, like when are you going to
have your clean slate?

Speaker 2 (25:09):
What is what has to get done still for that
to happen.

Speaker 1 (25:12):
Yeah.

Speaker 3 (25:13):
So you know, one thing I just want to say,
like every state, because we have states reach out to
us all the time, politicians, people, activists, leaders saying how
can we pass this in our state. The first thing
is we also got to have the technical feasibility because
there is like technical peace to it to automate it.
And we got some states that is still chiseling their
files on some stone tablets back there.

Speaker 2 (25:34):
Let me go pull up this spot.

Speaker 1 (25:35):
Yeah no, literally, you got missing.

Speaker 3 (25:38):
You got miss Betsy going in the big old Stor's
room trying to pull up a foul and that serves
as a barrier. So we have to make sure states
are updating their infrastructure, data, infrastructure. But for me, again,
I am committed to making sure that not just myself,
there are over two million people in the state of
Florida who just have a non conviction, a non conviction
on their record that they're trying to get cleared and

(26:00):
hoping that we could pass that.

Speaker 1 (26:01):
And I was past clean slate there so they could
have relief.

Speaker 3 (26:04):
We had a spongement clinic there two years ago down
to Miami and they had hundreds of people in line
that came trying to get the record clear again a
non conviction. And I would say it was this older
Hispanic guy and he was like, you know, I'm.

Speaker 1 (26:20):
Not sure if he had parking sins or whatever. He's shaking.

Speaker 3 (26:22):
He was like stumbling again in with his wife and
we ran over to him to help him in and
we I'm thinking he's coming to the community center, thinking
he's coming for some like real estate or some I
don't know, some other type of help.

Speaker 1 (26:33):
And he said, where do I go to get my
record clear? Wow?

Speaker 3 (26:36):
And that just hit me like, this man ain't coming
like most people are coming because they're trying to get
access to his job, maybe housing. This man is later
in his life and his last looked like maybe that
last tent of his life. He's coming here for the
dignity to not die with a record defining him, right,
not to be defined by his record. And I think
that's just all what people want to have, not been dignity,

(26:58):
humanity to be seen for themselves and not their record.

Speaker 1 (27:02):
And so that's what we want.

Speaker 3 (27:03):
And so right now even if my record don't get
clear in the next two or three years, if I
don't do anything else, if I can help change the
narrative around who and how and who we are as
people and people who have records.

Speaker 2 (27:16):
All right, well, thank you so much. I appreciate all
the work that you're doing. Of course, you know, if
there's anything I could do to help, I'm always on
board for that because it is something that I do
believe in because of people are close to me as well.

Speaker 3 (27:27):
Yeah, I'm gonna make sure we send you a shirt
because I don't have your size.

Speaker 2 (27:31):
So what's my size?

Speaker 3 (27:35):
You?

Speaker 2 (27:36):
How do you know I'm not a large.

Speaker 1 (27:38):
I don't have it, so we gonna send you. I
believe and have aqs it.

Speaker 3 (27:41):
But we got like I shorts and said, we're not
defined by record and just being able to amplify that
and continue to talk about it. We got twelves, like
twelve states that pass it, but we got a lot
of more work, a lot a lot of work to do.

Speaker 2 (27:53):
All right, Well, thank you so much. She and to
me the clean Slate initiative. Make sure y'all follow her,
make sure you guys support amazing, make sure you watch
her Ted.

Speaker 1 (28:01):
Talk yes, please watch my yes. All right, his way up,
way up,

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