HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – A Harrisburg group continues to help former prison inmates to leave their criminal records in the past and start fresh.

According to Clean Slate Pennsylvania, 3 million people have a record. Those people face barriers that stop them from building stability for themselves and their families.

“Once our time is done, it should be done period,” said community activist Keenan Hudson.

On Saturday, more than 100 people gathered for the 2nd Annual ‘TimeDone’ day.

It’s an event put on by a national non-profit organization, TimeDone and Breaking The Chainz, Inc. In Harrisburg.

The idea is to share resources and hope with those with a record.

“So that people can begin to live their lives in ways that shift the narrative around what a person with a record looks like,” said TimeDone organizer Ingrid Archie.

“We help individuals with record expungement, we help them understand the process, then we help them understand how important it is to get past the barriers that they face,” said Pennsylvania state chapter coordinator for TimeDone, Dr. Kevin Dolphin.

According to the National Inventory of Collateral Consequences of Conviction
, in Pennsylvania, there are more than 800 laws and restrictions that prevent those with a record from securing employment, housing, education, and more.

“I actually spent a lot of years in prison myself…..During the time of return to society it was a struggle to sometimes get a job, you know you could get to an interview but it’s totally up to the discretion of the hiring manager but once you know figure out and you tell them you have a felony or a record, they are quick to put your application to the side,” said Hudson.  

Hudson was eventually able to get that fresh start.

“I was able to reform my life, start businesses and do the right thing for the community,” said Hudson.

Those who have been able to help those with a past record say, it’s a feeling like no other.

“It’s like watching a baby grow up,” said community member Dorothy Scott.

“Oh man, it’s very rewarding, more than anything else I feel blessed because I’m able to see people change their lives,” said Dolphin.  

If you’re someone with a past criminal history, there is hope for a second chance.

“I just wanna say that for anybody out there that’s listening to this if you have a criminal record or if you’ve been through some type of struggle with the system just know there is hope,” said Hudson.