Restricted from Participating in the Community

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Imagine that it is the annual zoo field trip at your son’s elementary school. You are very excited to chaperone your first event and spend extra time with your son. You reach out to the school to sign up to be a chaperone and they give you the basic form. You start filling it out: name, address, relationship to the student and then you see “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?”

You were convicted of grand larceny in your early 20s during your trafficking experience. That was over 10 years ago. Now, you have a life full of family and friends who know nothing about that experience. There is too much shame surrounding your conviction that you can not bring yourself to explain –especially to your son’s teacher. You throw the chaperone form away because you know there is no way they will allow you to join. You are hopeful for the day you can remedy your conviction to finally move beyond your trafficking experience and fully participate in your son’s life.

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