When beginning the process of obtaining a Canadian Pardon the first step is to have a set of fingerprints taken. This can be done by most police detachments as well as private fingerprinting organizations. If you start a Canadian Pardon application with the National Pardon Centre and live in the Calgary, Toronto, or Montreal area you can come into our office to have your fingerprints taken at no additional cost. The National Pardon Centre is RCMP accredited, offering both ink and electronic fingerprinting services.
Obviously not everyone lives close to one of our offices. In this case you will need to use one of the other means to have your fingerprints taken and for many people this means going to your local police detachment. This can be a daunting task for many people. Those who live in small towns tend to be especially reluctant since we all know how quickly gossip spread in a small town. The thought alone of announcing to everyone that you had a past criminal record is enough to stop many people in their tracks when contemplating beginning the Canadian Pardon process.
Don’t let this fear deter you as you do have options. Drive to another town to have your fingerprints done or seek out a private fingerprinting organization.
Another option is to have your fingerprints done by your local police station for the purpose of something other than a pardon. You can simply tell the fingerprinting technician that the prints are for employment or volunteering. If you are a client of the National Pardon Centre you can send the ink fingerprints to us and we can scan them into our AFIS (automated fingerprinting identification system) and digitally submit them to the RCMP on your behalf. We will certify them for a pardon or waiver and it doesn’t matter what the person taking your fingerprints was told.
Keep in mind that if you are concerned about having your fingerprints taken you are not alone. But overcoming this small obstacle will provide considerable peace of mind. The knowledge that you are taking the steps to move on from your past will open your future to new possibilities. After all, why live with a criminal record when you don’t have to.