100 signatures reached
To: Minister of Department of Justice, Ronald Lamola, Minister of SAPS, Bheki Cele
Ronald Lamola & Bheki Cele must automatically clear criminal records on Police record systems
Expungement is a procedure which results in the lawful clearance and removal of a criminal record on an individual's record from the National Criminal Register . So many people are living with criminal records. The stigma they face in their communities once they are released, coupled with the limitations of work opportunities, makes it extremely difficult. Those who can afford to might have access to intermediaries who can speed up matters, but for the vast majority of the country, this is a luxury. Many are denied a shot at opportunities or the chance to improve themselves. There is no research in South Africa that states that a person needs to wait a period of 10 years before they are rehabilitated. This administrative sentence pushes people further into incarceration.
We, therefore, call on Minister Ronald Lamola and Minister Bheki Cele to:
To have a Police officer at every Police station in South Africa who is trained to specialise in helping people identify whether to apply for Police Clearance Certificate (SAPS 365) or the (PCR) that is issued by the Local Criminal Records Centre (LCRC). Communities, families and children pay the price so businesses and governments can extort fees through police clearance certificates and fingerprint clearance reports.
The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development must improve their research and implement a shorter time before ex-offenders criminal records are removed from the system. The burden of cost on the already poor and unemployed must be removed.
The Department of Justice and Constitutional Development and the Constitutional Court must put pressure on corporate's that refuse to employ ex-offenders. It is understandable if it's an inherent requirement of the job that needs to be decided by a court, not an employer.
Local Department of Justice and Constitutional Development offices should play a more meaningful role by allowing applicants to drop off applications and then issue receipts and reference numbers to save on cost and the trauma of not knowing if applicants' applications have been received by the department or not.
Why is this important?
Having a criminal record can make it impossible to secure employment, a visa, or exercise other basic rights. It has serious effects on our personal, family and working lives.
The law has changed, but many people do not know it is possible to get their records cleared. Some are not even aware that they have a criminal record – they find out when they are looking forward to a new job, a promotion, or travel overseas, and their hopes are dashed.
Expungement (removal or erasure) of criminal records is allowed for certain offences after a fixed period of time. The process is free, except for the cost of a police clearance certificate (PCR) Police Clearance Report at a cost of R75. However, people needing help often find themselves paying high fees.
We should all work to ensure those who have slipped through the cracks and offended the state should not be enslaved by the state for their most productive lives. The process of the state must be fair, just and led by research. We cannot build a peaceful, fully loving and productive country in an adversarial manner where punishment never ends for the poor, vulnerable and lesser prepared for life's challenges.
For more information, click this link: https://clearmeapp.co.za/
 Expungement of a criminal record, SAPS: https://www.saps.gov.za/faqdetail.php?fid=57#:~:text=Procedure%20to%20follow%20to%20obtain,and%20dates%20of%20the%20offence