Business Roundtable today issued the following statement in support of bipartisan criminal justice reform:
“Business Roundtable believes that bipartisan criminal justice reform is important to building stronger U.S. communities and a healthier economy, in which more Americans have opportunities to realize their potential. Any legislative proposal should address two key priorities:
“First, bipartisan criminal justice reform should make sensible changes to sentencing guidelines. The Senate version of the First Step Act rightly advances this goal by making retroactive the Fair Sentencing Act of 2010 for certain drug offenses.
“Second, CEOs support provisions that would grant greater access to education and workforce training in prison to help reduce recidivism and ease reentry into society for formerly incarcerated individuals. This will open more career pathways for these Americans, helping break the destructive cycle of joblessness and crime that has devastated many families and communities.
“In a time when companies are struggling to find talented, diverse workers to fill open jobs, it is crucial that we provide all working-age Americans with the tools and training to take advantage of available career opportunities. Many U.S. employers, including Business Roundtable member companies, are taking action to make it easier for formerly incarcerated individuals to secure employment. Supporting such efforts should be a chief aim of bipartisan criminal justice reform.
“Business Roundtable is pleased that the First Step Act passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support, and we are encouraged by many of the provisions of the Senate version of the bill. The Roundtable urges Congress to continue working together to pass bipartisan criminal justice reform that removes unnecessary barriers to employment for formerly incarcerated Americans, supporting their successful return to society and a more vibrant and diverse U.S. economy.”