June 3, 2021

For Immediate Release:

Dinwiddie — Today Delegate Lashrecse Aird joined Governor Ralph Northam at Dinwiddie High School to deliver remarks at the signing of HB1930. Sponsored by Delegate Aird, this legislation will prohibit most universities in the Commonwealth from asking about an applicant’s criminal history during the initial application process.

Prior to the signing, Delegate Aird gave the following remarks to an audience of local leaders, school officials, and students:

“Today is the culmination of a long road and many years of hard work. 

Today is a testament to our collective determination and the work of tireless advocates who made this legislation a reality. 

And for countless Virginians who have faced stigma and undue barriers to higher education — today marks a hopeful new beginning. 

We are here to celebrate those striving for a better life through education who have been told for far too long that they are unworthy. 

As a lawmaker, a mother, and a college administrator, I witness the transformative power of education every single day and I know what is possible when students are given the opportunity to thrive. 

Because education nourishes. 

It incubates the minds of the next generation of Virginians.

It is a gift that allows all of us to live vivid, full lives No matter who you are or where you come from — 

education has the power to ignite our minds and gives us the tools and confidence to reach our full potential. 

Because education is power — 

And that power belongs to all of us. 

Today the commonwealth is sending a clear message: even if you have made mistakes in your life, if you are courageous enough to work for a better future, you too are worthy of that power. 

Because our mistakes do not define us. 

It is how we choose to learn, grow, and move forward from those mistakes that makes us who we are. 

You are not defined by your past if you are given the opportunity to build a bright future. 

So, to the Virginians who thought this day might never come, I want to say:

You are worthy. 

You are respected. 

And I am so incredibly proud of you for boldly carving out a path to your next chapter. 

I cannot wait to see how far you’ll go and we are all so excited to experience the future you will build. “