One of my former students who’s been looking for a job told me employers wouldn’t consider her because of her arrest record.
“What arrest record?” I asked.
“I was arrested three years ago, during the Occupy demonstrations,” she said.
“Because you demonstrated?”
“Yes. They charged me with inciting a riot. All I was doing was sitting on the campus, holding a sign. But they put me and a dozen others in jail because we wouldn’t move,” she said. “And now I can’t get a job.”
I’m going to help her try to expunge her arrest record. But her story made me think about the chilling effect such arrests have had on millions of students who are facing or about to face a difficult job market. Since then, many have been afraid to demonstrate — to exercise their First Amendment rights — for fear of not getting a job. [link]