Fewer than one percent of applicants with criminal records are turned away when they apply to the state for a professional license.
But Illinois' Secretary of Financial and Professional Regulation, Bryan Schneider, says anecdotally, the department knows many former convicts don't even try:
"What was going on was people perceived it as being impossible. So why come downtown, or anywhere quite frankly, for an interview, if you know you're going to be denied?"
Schneider is optimistic that a new license application will change that.