One of the most daunting tasks for formerly incarcerated individuals reentering society has been to secure employment. In an effort to reduce recidivism and expand opportunity, cities and states across the country have passed “Ban the Box” policies, which ban questions about arrests and criminal records from the early stages of job application procedures. How can these reforms be replicated at the federal level to reduce barriers to employment for individuals reentering society?
Please join AEI for a conversation with House Committee on Oversight and Reform Chairman Elijah Cummings (D-MD) and House Committee on the Judiciary Ranking Member Doug Collins (R-GA), cosponsors of the Fair Chance Act, as they discuss how their bill would help rehabilitated men and women gain meaningful employment, followed by an expert panel.
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Stan Veuger, AEI
Doug Collins, Ranking Member of the House Committee on the Judiciary (R-GA)
Elijah Cummings, Chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform (D-MD)
Stan Veuger, AEI
Terry-Ann Craigie, Connecticut College
Ames Grawert, Brennan Center for Justice
Stan Veuger, AEI
Elijah Cummings (D-MD) has served as a representative for Maryland’s 7th Congressional District since 1996. Previously, Rep. Cummings served in the Maryland House of Delegates for 14 years and became the first African American Speaker Pro Tem. In the 116th Congress, he serves as chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. He also is the chairman of the NEA Maritime Advisory Board and held the Gwendolyn S. and Colbert I. King Endowed Chair in Public Policy Lecture Series at Howard University from 2014 to 2016. Additionally, Rep. Cummings serves on various boards and commissions, such as the US Naval Academy board of visitors and the University of Maryland Law School board of advisers. He holds 13 honorary doctoral degrees from colleges across the United States and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society.
Doug Collins (R-GA) has served as a representative for Georgia’s 9th Congressional District since 2013. Before coming to Washington, Rep. Collins earned his law degree at John Marshall Law School. He also represented Georgia’s 27th district in the Georgia State House, where he became the governor’s floor leader. In the State House, Rep. Collins championed the HOPE Scholarship program for future Georgia students. Rep. Collins previously served in Iraq from 2008 to 2009 as a lieutenant colonel in the US Air Force and still remains a military chaplain today. In the 116th Congress, he serves as ranking member of the US House Committee on the Judiciary. Previously, he served as vice chair of the House Republican Conference and served on the House Judiciary Committee and House Rules Committee.
Terry-Ann Craigie is an associate professor of economics at Connecticut College, the economics fellow at the Brennan Center for Justice at the New York University School of Law, and a visiting scholar at the Population Studies and Training Center at Brown University. Dr. Craigie is a justice economist who studies mass incarceration, criminal justice reform, and the labor market, with special emphasis on their implications for racial and social justice. Her most recent work evaluates public-sector “Ban the Box” policies and the extent to which they improve employment prospects of those with criminal records.
Ames Grawert is senior counsel in the Brennan Center for Justice and the John L. Neu Justice Counsel. His work seeks to develop an understanding of the cost of America’s criminal justice system — to defendants, inmates, and the nation as a whole — and to translate that information into legal change. Previously, Mr. Grawert served as an assistant district attorney in the Appeals Bureau of the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office, where he reviewed and litigated claims of actual innocence in addition to his appellate work. Before entering public service, he was an associate at Mayer Brown LLP, where he represented criminal defendants pro bono in state and federal post-conviction litigation. He uses this experience to examine criminal justice issues from “both sides,” taking into account the interests of prosecutors, police officers, and criminal defendants alike.
Stan Veuger is a resident scholar at AEI, where his research is in political economy and public finance. He is also the editor of AEI Economic Perspectives. He has been a visiting lecturer of economics at Harvard University and is a fellow at the Center for the Governance of Change at the IE School of International Relations in Madrid. Dr. Veuger’s research has been published in leading academic and professional journals, including the Journal of Monetary Economics, the Quarterly Journal of Economics, and the Review of Economics and Statistics. He is the editor, with Michael Strain, of “Economic Freedom and Human Flourishing: Perspectives from Political Philosophy” (AEI Press, 2016). He also writes frequently for general audiences on economics, politics, and popular culture. His writing has appeared in Foreign Affairs, the Los Angeles Times, The National Interest, The New York Times, and USA Today, among others. Dr. Veuger serves as the chairman of the Washington, DC, chapter of the Netherland-America Foundation. He received a Ph.D. and an A.M. in economics from Harvard and an M.Sc. in economics from Universitat Pompeu Fabra. He completed his undergraduate education at Utrecht University and Erasmus University Rotterdam.