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  • The Narrative Project

CONECT Celebrates Signing of the Clean Slate Bill (SB 1019) into Law by Governor Lamont


June 10, 2021

CONTACT: Ashlee Niedospial 570.778.5916


SB 1019 signed into law after three years of community organizing towards strong Clean Slate legislation


New Haven, CT (June 10, 2021) – Congregations Organized for a New Connecticut (CONECT) celebrated today after three years of community organizing and advocacy, when Governor Lamont signed the Clean Slate bill (SB 1019) into law. Now passed, this groundbreaking legislation will benefit the many thousands of Connecticut residents living with a criminal record through the automatic erasure of criminal records for certain convictions.

In response, Rev. Anthony L. Bennett, pastor of Mt. Aery Baptist Church in Bridgeport and co-chair of CONECT shared the following statements:

“Today, Governor Lamont carried out the will of the people by signing this smart, just and moral policy. After three years of organizing Clean Slate is now the law of the land.

“This is a milestone moment for Connecticut because this Clean Slate bill is the most expansive in the country, yet there is still so much work to be done. While the bill did not go as far as many of us pushed for, we believe it is a significant step in the work towards building a society where a criminal conviction is not treated as a lifetime sentence.”

“At its core, Clean Slate is a bill that helps children and families, especially Black and brown families. Nearly one in two children across the country have at least one parent with a criminal record and the barriers people face when they have a record have ripple effects for their families and loved ones. The signing of this bill affords us the opportunity to begin to do right by the children in our state by ensuring their fathers and mothers have a fair shot at a second chance, a fair shot at employment and housing.

“We have not forgotten our brothers and sisters who were left out of this bill -- we know that all people deserve redemption -- but today we will rejoice for the tens of thousands of individuals who will now get the opportunity to move on and rebuild their lives.

“Let this hard-fought win be a model for how states across the country can begin to end the continuing harm of mass incarceration, particularly in its targeting of Black and brown individuals, and build safer, more prosperous communities.”

CONECT began the effort to pass Clean Slate legislation in Connecticut in the fall of 2018 and has been a leading advocate for the policy since that time, alongside their key allies at the ACLU of Connecticut (ACLU CT), Greater Hartford Interfaith Action Alliance (GHIAA), and the CT Reentry Collaborative. CONECT had previously invited Governor Lamont to sign the Clean Slate bill in the basement hall at Mt. Aery Baptist Church in Bridgeport where efforts to implement Clean Slate policy in Connecticut began.


Photo: 800-person Candidates Assembly with Gov. candidate Ned Lamont (October 2018)

Photo: January 2019 Campaign Kick-off

Photo: Clean Slate Kick-Off, January 2020 -- 600+ people

Photo: Clean Slate Press Conference at the Capitol April 2021

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Congregations Organized for a New Connecticut (CONECT) is a collective of churches, synagogues, mosques, temples, and civic organizations from New Haven and Fairfield Counties – representing more than 30,000 people from different races, faith backgrounds, and living in both cities and suburbs – that have joined together to take action on social and economic justice issues of common concern. CONECT has made an impact on issues as varied as gun violence, health insurance rates, police reform, immigrant rights, and more.

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