PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — The Peoria Public Schools Wraparound Center is hosting a free legal workshop for qualified residents from 10 a.m. to noon on Saturday, July 24.
Wraparound Center Attorney Yolanda Riley will be on-hand to answer questions pertaining to criminal record expungements and sealings, family law, landlord/tenant negotiations, and more.
The workshop is funded through a $100,000 grant from the State of Illinois Restore, Reinvest, Renew (R3) program. The R3 program drives 25% of cannabis tax revenue to fund grants on violence prevention, community development, youth development, housing, reentry, and legal services.
“We wanted to get the word out, we just received the R3 grant funds last month, so now it’s time to put in action the services,” Riley said. She expects most inquiries to be about how to expunge or seal a criminal record.
Illinois House Speaker Pro Tempore Jehan Gordon Booth (D-Peoria) said she started hosting expungement clinics for cannabis records five years ago and was amazed how many people need help navigating the system.
“There was the other space of knowing that folks in our community need access through legal services but don’t often have access to a lawyer, or they can’t afford one,” she said.
Booth said those with a record are “calcified in poverty,” and tend to be mothers who have not served any prison time and committed the offense between the ages of 18 and 20.
“There are very few jobs that you’ll be able to access, there are very few places where can actually have quality housing that will allow you to move in, and quite honestly, you will have a difficult challenge, if you have a record, even volunteering at your child’s school… so in every possible way you are impacted when you have a conviction on your record,” Booth said.
The Wraparound Center is located within the Trewyn School at 1419 S. Folkers Ave, Door 16.
Those looking to RSVP for the workshop can call 309-282-1919.