Bill passes that would help felons get jobs

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- The state legislature has passed a bill that may make it easier for some felons who have turned their lives around to find a job.

The bill, which passed with overwhelming bipartisan support, would allow courts to issue a certificate of employability to convicted felons who have stayed out of trouble. It would also grant some legal protection from lawsuits to employers who hire a felon who has the court-issued certificate.

The legislation was sponsored by Sen. Brian Kelsey, a Republican from Germantown. Rep. Karen Camper, a Democrat from Memphis, sponsored the House version of the bill.

Kelsey said the bill encourages public safety because people are less likely to turn back to crime if they have a job.

The bill has yet to be signed by the governor.

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