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Press Release

New York Governor Kathy Hochul Signs Clean Slate Act

New York becomes 12th state to enact clean slate legislation aimed at bettering opportunities for people with past criminal convictions

November 16, 2023
Contact: Derek Rosenfeld, Media Contact,, 646-292-8381

Today New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed the Clean Slate Act. The bill automatically “seals” certain criminal records after a waiting period (three years for misdemeanors and eight for felonies) and only if the person doesn’t commit a new offense.

Ames Grawert, senior counsel in the Justice Program at the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU Law, had the following comment:

“Today New York became the 12th state in the country to enact a Clean Slate law, ensuring that millions of New Yorkers with a criminal record will have access to better jobs, housing, and opportunities in their community. We thank the governor for signing the Clean Slate Act, and we congratulate the bill’s sponsors and the broad coalition that fought for this bill for many years. This legislation will help build a more inclusive workforce, enhancing the state economy and public safety in the process.”

The Clean Slate Act is a victory for a broad coalition including advocates, organizers, and business leaders. To speak with New Yorkers who have been directly impacted by the stigma of criminal records and stand to benefit from the legislation, please contact Tanya Frable, director of communications, at the Center for Community Alternatives: