Governor signs Vick bill to reduce employment barriers for those with prior criminal convictions

The governor signed a bill into law Friday sponsored by Rep. Brandon Vick, which makes the licensing process simpler for individuals who have paid their debt to society.

House Bill 1874 will facilitate the process for an individual with a criminal history to determine whether their prior conviction would disqualify them from obtaining a professional license administered by the Department of Licensing (DOL).

“This is another positive step for individuals that want to reenter the workforce after completing their sentence,” said Vick, R-Vancouver. “I'm happy to see this legislation become law.”

The bill builds on House Bill 1399, which passed last year, and adds an additional level of clarity for individuals working to get professional licensure in Washington.

HB 1399 created a straightforward process for individuals convicted of a crime to apply for and receive a professional license. HB 1874 simplifies that process further and helps individuals save time and money.

Both bills will also help people with prior convictions or arrests transition back into society and reduce recidivism after being released.

“When someone serves their time and they are ready to contribute to society in a positive way, we need to ensure they can do that,” said Vick. “This legislation will help people get back into the workforce, making it less likely they'll reoffend.”

The legislation is schedule to take effect in June of 2022.


Washington State House Republican Communications