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Embracing New Beginnings: Los Angeles Leads with Fair Chance Hiring

Embracing New Beginnings: Los Angeles Leads with Fair Chance Hiring

To the Honorable Members of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors,

I am Josh Nowack, CEO of Breaking Free Industries, a committed screen printing business that proudly operates as a second chance employer. Our mission is to provide meaningful employment opportunities to individuals who are eager to rebuild their lives and contribute positively to our community, regardless of their past.

I write to express my enthusiastic support for the resolution proposed by Supervisors Mitchell and Solis regarding the Fair Chance Ordinance for Employers. This ordinance represents a significant step forward in creating a more inclusive, equitable, and fair hiring process across Los Angeles County. By amending County Code, Title 8 - Consumer Protection, Business and Wage Regulations, this ordinance will offer crucial protections and rights to applicants and employees with prior criminal histories, ensuring they have a fair chance at employment.

The directives to submit a draft Fair Chance County Board Policy, revise Policy, Procedure, and Guideline (PPG) 514, and include “persons with criminal history” as a protected category within the County Policy of Equity are commendable. These actions demonstrate a comprehensive approach to dismantling barriers that have long prevented talented, capable individuals from fully participating in our workforce.

As a business leader who witnesses the transformative power of employment daily, I believe that the Fair Chance Ordinance for Employers will not only change lives but also bolster our local economy by tapping into a previously underutilized pool of passionate, dedicated workers.

However, to truly level the playing field, I urge the County to consider taking additional measures to suppress the availability of adverse information through online searches post the lookback period. Even with the Fair Chance Ordinance, the digital footprint of a person’s past can be a significant barrier to employment. Prospective employers may inadvertently or otherwise come across this information, impacting an individual’s fair chance at securing a job.

Therefore, I request that the County explores strategies to address this issue, perhaps by collaborating with technology companies and legal experts, to ensure that once an individual is beyond the lookback period, they are not unduly prejudiced by information that is no longer relevant to their current capabilities and character.

In closing, I commend the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors for their leadership on this critical issue and stand ready to support the implementation of the Fair Chance Ordinance for Employers. Together, we can make Los Angeles County a model for inclusive hiring practices that recognize the dignity and potential of every individual, contributing to a stronger, more vibrant community.

Thank you for considering my comments and for your ongoing commitment to equity and justice in our county.


Josh Nowack CEO, Breaking Free Industries

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