National Expungement Week and Code For BTV
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September 21st is the first day of National Expungement Week! Code for BTV, a Code for America Brigade (civic technologists), helps ring-in the week with an event dedicated to making the process of expungement in Vermont more transparent and accessible. Code for BTV brings together people from the legal community, those working on justice reform, and members of the technology community that focus on user research.
From their press release:
"Together we will work to create an understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of our state’s expungement process. Our hope is that this effort can inform legislative decision making and provide a roadmap that any law professional could use to start navigating expungement on their own. We will be creating a repeatable set of user research steps that can be used to work with justice impacted citizens (those needing or having achieved expungement). These steps will be tailored to our state’s expungement process. The brigade will deploy these steps at public outreach events to gain an understanding of the logistical and emotional impact that our state’s expungement process has on our citizens. This event and follow-up outreach events will allow us to see expungement in the state both from the inside looking out and the outside looking in."
Code for BTV demonstrates the free, open-source tool built for VT Legal Aid that automates much of the effort in creating expungement petitions in Vermont. We will be using fake data for this demonstration so that anyone may see how it works.