World Refugee Day: The Right to Freedom from Violence

World Refugee Day: The Right to Freedom from Violence

In recognition of World Refugee Day, we are expressing our commitment to standing with refugees and defending the human right to seek asylum in a world where violence forces thousands of families to flee for their lives each day. We commemorate the strength, courage, and perserverance of millions of refugees and value this day as a key opportunity for our community to learn and show support for the victims of…

Ear Hustle: Season 2 Finale ft. Our Own, Anouthinh Pangthong, OUT NOW!

Ear Hustle: Season 2 Finale ft. Our Own, Anouthinh Pangthong, OUT NOW!

Ear Hustle Season 2 is finishing strong today with exit interviews following the journeys of men returning home from San Quentin. Re:store Justice's amazing colleague, Anouthinh aka Choy is featured. This special episode is on transformation, challenges to reentry, & first successes/awkward dates in society. We’re so grateful to be working alongside Choy & the Ear Hustle team to get these important messages out there. Tune in…

Phil & Fayth's Father's Day Message in Partnership with ATTN: x First Watch

Phil & Fayth's Father's Day Message in Partnership with ATTN: x First Watch

We are grateful to Phil, his daughter, Fayth, First Watch, and ATTN: for sharing this meaningful message around parenting behind bars & sentencing reform on Father's Day. "1.5 million kids won't have their dads at home this Father's Day due to incarceration." WATCH NOW SEE MORE FROM FIRST WATCH A SPECIAL MESSAGE FROM PHIL, HIS DAUGHTER, FAYTH, FIRST WATCH, & ATTN:…

First Father's Day Home

First Father's Day Home

Growing up with a father who was in and out of prison taught me that committing crime was normal. I learned that criminal values were more important than family values. While my father was away I never knew how to contact him. This left me confused and alone to figure out why he chose crime over me. Issues I developed from my father being in prison led me to adopt…

URGENT: SB 1437 SUPPORT LETTERS DUE 06/19.

URGENT: SB 1437 SUPPORT LETTERS DUE 06/19.

UPDATE: Senate Bill 1437 will be heard & voted on in the Assembly Public Safety Committee on Tuesday, June 26th - your support is critical to ensuring that this bill moves forward! Please join the chorus of voices in favor of fair & just sentencing in CA by sending a support letter below. The deadline to send letters in by is next Tuesday, June 19th. We are sending letters to…

San Quentin Radio: Losing your language in prison

San Quentin Radio: Losing your language in prison

Incarceration has many levels of impact. Loss of cultural identity is one of them. David Lei's story, "Loss of Language," produced by our very own Anouthinh Pangthong was presented on NPR - The California Report. Listen to the full podcast here.…

Victims’ Rights, Victims’ Needs, and the Role of Restorative Justice

Victims’ Rights, Victims’ Needs, and the Role of Restorative Justice

Rebecca Weiker, Re:store Justice Program Director In her recent New Yorker article about the unlikely alliance of feminists and conservatives that helped create the victim’s rights movement, Jill Lapore defines victim rights and offender rights as in opposition to each other. Restorative Justice offers an alternative approach, addressing the needs of both victims and offenders in order to create healing, offer reparations, promote accountability, and prevent future harm.…

Senate Bill 1437: Senate Floor VICTORY!

Senate Bill 1437: Senate Floor VICTORY!

WE DID IT! Yesterday afternoon (May 30th, 2018), we achieved a major and necessary feat: Senate Bill 1437, proudly sponsored by Re:store Justice, was heard on the Senate floor and resoundingly passed with 26 votes! This victory was resounding with 2/3 of Senators voting “Aye” reiterating that the urgent call for fair and just sentencing is echoing throughout California and beyond. As of today, over 1,300+ individuals…

Prison inmates are "down," but costs still going up

Prison inmates are "down," but costs still going up

Today, CA's prison population is "down" from its record high of 162,000 to 129,000 people behind bars. While this is a sign of progress, this number is still beyond 6x greater than the incarcerated population of the 1970s. The current system remains a travesty of justice until WE, AS A COMMUNITY, adequately address the human, social & economic costs of antiquated & failed tough-on-crime policies. Read…

WATCH: How Childhood Trauma Affects Health Across a Timeline

WATCH: How Childhood Trauma Affects Health Across a Timeline

One exposure dramatically increases the risk for 7 out of 10 leading causes of death in the United States. This threat is childhood trauma. Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) include physical, emotional, or sexual abuse; physical or emotional neglect; parental mental illness, substance dependence, INCARCERATION; parental separation or divorce; or domestic violence. These early adversities actually affect the developing brains & bodies of children, altering the brain's physical chemistry, & its…

Four Stories of the Felony Murder Rule in California

Four Stories of the Felony Murder Rule in California

It's time California acknowledges that this law can be applied unfairly & in some cases, has caused disproportionately long sentences for people who DID NOT commit murder. It's time for us to advocate for change.…

California spends too much on prisons, not enough to keep people out of prison

California spends too much on prisons, not enough to keep people out of prison

The prison population & crime rates across #California have declined, yet state spending on incarceration has grown by 32% since 2007. 📈 “We are spending too much on our prison system because our justice system has become convoluted with excessive sentences, countless crimes and arbitrary sentence enhancements.” When we spend over $80,000/year to keep one individual behind bars and less than $12,000/year to support a K-12 student,…

VICTORY: We are one step closer to bringing fair sentencing to California!

VICTORY: We are one step closer to bringing fair sentencing to California!

Less than 24 hours ago, we achieved our first major victory in bringing fair sentencing to California: Senate Bill 1437, sponsored by Re:store Justice, passed out of the Senate Public Safety Committee! As a result of your commitment to stand with us in addressing the gravest injustices of our system, we successfully brought together dozens of coalition partners, impacted individuals, and law professionals to advocate for the overdue reform…

Finding College by Way of Prison

Finding College by Way of Prison

While California continues pushing our criminal justice system down the rehabilitative path to reduce recidivism and improve public safety, are we doing enough? How can we ensure that resources we're advocating for find their way to the unserved and underserved? "We have the power to rehabilitate and educate. Education is empowering. But the system is like Spiderman right now. They have the power, but they don’t want to…

Expert Opinions: Victims of crime and reformers should work together on criminal justice reform

Expert Opinions: Victims of crime and reformers should work together on criminal justice reform

Every single person impacted by crime deserves a seat at the circle. They are the most qualified in terms of true experience to lead conversations around reform. They know what our communities need and we need to support. "86 percent of victims believe that programs providing rehabilitation and drug and mental health treatment for people already in the justice system should receive more funding." We are here to…

Honoring the 30th anniversary of CDCR's Office of Victims and Survivor Rights and Services: Expand the Circle, Reach All Victims

Honoring the 30th anniversary of CDCR's Office of Victims and Survivor Rights and Services: Expand the Circle, Reach All Victims

It was an honor to stand with the CDCR Office of Victim and Survivor Rights & Services & so many other incredible allies for National Crime Victims Rights Week. As CDCR Undersecretary, Ralph Diaz, said yesterday, "Healing from trauma is what turns victims into survivors." And to do that, we must reach across the aisle & come together as members of one community. Thank you to OVSRS for…

A 'hellish world': the mental health crisis overwhelming America's prisons

A 'hellish world': the mental health crisis overwhelming America's prisons

Let's rethink this: If the person you love most has a serious mental illness, would you want their primary treatment provider to be a prison? “Along with race and poverty, mental illness has become a salient feature of mass incarceration, one that must be accounted for in any discussion about criminal justice reform.” Dive into this article by The Guardian to learn more. Photo credit: Nearly half of the people…

RSVP: False Confessions Lecture at USF School of Law on April 11th

RSVP: False Confessions Lecture at USF School of Law on April 11th

"False confessions are one of the leading factors contributing to the conviction of innocent people in the United States. As DNA evidence has exonerated hundreds of people, the role of false confessions has also been brought to light. Why do innocent people confess? How often does this occur? Is there a pattern to false confessions? Hamill Family Chair Professor of Law and Social Psychology Richard A. Leo will address…

California Proposes Legislation to Address Lethal Force

California Proposes Legislation to Address Lethal Force

Accountability should be a core value reflected THROUGHOUT our criminal justice system. If California moves forward with this, we will be at the forefront of addressing the issue of lethal force. This is a huge institutional step towards repairing harms and strained relationships between law enforcement and communities. ProtectThePeople Read more about the announcement of the proposed bill on SacBee here. Photo credit: Assemblyman Kevin McCarty speaks at a press…

What If Every High School Had A 'Justice Program' Instead Of A Cop?

What If Every High School Had A 'Justice Program' Instead Of A Cop?

Imagine if we taught kids early on how to resolve conflicts and build community through talking and group dialogue. Shout out to the Restorative Justice unit at Oakland Unified School District for being a national leader in expanding restorative justice in schools and intervening to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline. Read the NPR article covering the subject here.…

Listen to Ear Hustle's episode on restorative justice

Listen to Ear Hustle's episode on restorative justice

Sex trafficking crimes are hard to talk about. In this episode, Sara and LA share their different experiences of being “in the life,” at the same time demonstrating the difficult, yet important work of restorative justice. Please listen to the latest Ear Hustle featuring our friend Sara Kruzan here. and support Sara's work here…

PLEA: An Introductory Film to a Complicated Injustice

PLEA: An Introductory Film to a Complicated Injustice

In our broken criminal justice system, there are many ways to get sentenced for murder - without committing the actual murder. Director, Joseph Oppenheimer, a former criminal defense lawyer from the UK and our wonderful partner in this work, developed PLEA as an introduction to a complicated injustice. The film tells the story of a plea bargain falling apart in a South LA Juvenile Court. It touches on the pervasive…

Biting the Bullet: A Systematic Review on Gun Violence in the United States

Biting the Bullet: A Systematic Review on Gun Violence in the United States

The Smoking Gun Every day in the United States, an average of 96 human lives end at the barrel of a gun. [1] In fear, in anger, in self-defense, or all of the above, people are being taken away from their loved ones without the possibility of return in split-seconds of impulsivity and disconnect. The blowback shocks our communities and we begin to cope, addressing visible wounds as our society…

TAKE ACTION: We want to hear from you & support you!

TAKE ACTION: We want to hear from you & support you!

TAKE ACTION: We want to hear from you & support you! Please connect with us & add your loved one's to our mailing list by sending us an email at info@restorecal.org with their name, CDCR #, facility, housing unit, & if comfortable, your loved ones sentence, so that we can share what legislation might apply to him/her! Please share widely - those on our list will have news…

Philadelphia DA Larry Krasner Promised a Criminal Justice Revolution. He’s Exceeding Expectations.

Philadelphia DA Larry Krasner Promised a Criminal Justice Revolution. He’s Exceeding Expectations.

Philadelphia's DA, #LarryKrasner, just issued a revolutionary guiding document that will likely go down in history as the single largest policy shift for #CJReform. The first sentence cuts through decades of systemic failure: “These policies are an effort to end mass incarcerations & bring balance back to sentencing.” To summarize the five-page, MUST READ document, points of change mostly involve instructing prosecutors to use critical thinking skills, data, & alternative…

Example of Community-based Probation Success Can Make Long, Hard Journey Worthwhile

Example of Community-based Probation Success Can Make Long, Hard Journey Worthwhile

Our society has fallen into a vicious trap of dealing with troubled youth by sending them away, removing the "threat" from the community as a lazy response for public safety. But now, a more effective solution has become clear. Through collective efforts in counties across the nation, probation, the court, court partners, & community partners are choosing to support home-based trauma-focused therapeutic programs aimed at stabilizing youth in…

Sign this Petition: SEEKING REDEMPTION

Sign this Petition: SEEKING REDEMPTION

The enormity and complexity of California’s laws has inadvertently created an environment where a person who has committed a crime for the first time, even though their conduct may be attributable to youth, addiction, or any similar circumstance, could be sentenced to die in prison with no possibility of redemption or opportunity to make amends. Add your voice to this cause here.…

Report: Plan to Expand California Youth Prisons Needs Tinkering

Report: Plan to Expand California Youth Prisons Needs Tinkering

A report by the California Legislative Analyst’s Office raised some doubts about Gov. Jerry Brown’s plan to see more older youth and young adults served in the state youth prison system administered by the Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ).Read the article here.…

Listen to Ear Hustle Season 2!

Listen to Ear Hustle Season 2!

“Firsts” in prison can be especially memorable: the first time you meet your cellie, or leave the prison for medical treatment, or run your first marathon. Alongside these tales, Adnan Khan shares the story of his first visit from his mom, 13 years after he was incarcerated. Listen here.…

Care Call for Youth: Join us on March 20th at 8pm!

Care Call for Youth: Join us on March 20th at 8pm!

Cares for Youth, Cares Call Tuesday with Laura Sheppard, Criminal Defense Attorney Tuesday, March 20, 2018 at 8 PM Call: (515) 604-9384 Code: 313882# Ms. Sheppard will join CARES for Youth host, Dennis P. Flynn, on a CARES Call that employs an interview format to learn her perspective on the impact of changes in California law for youth serving extreme sentences. We will cover topics ranging parole hearing preparation and…

News Analysis: Jeff Sessions comes to California bearing gifts

News Analysis: Jeff Sessions comes to California bearing gifts

Most out-of-state politicians come to California to raise money. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions flew into Sacramento bearing a gift, in the form a lawsuit targeting this so-called sanctuary state. Read the CalMatters artice here.…

How Far Should ‘Raise-the-Age’ Reforms Go?

How Far Should ‘Raise-the-Age’ Reforms Go?

While the US imposes an age of majority on youthful offenders at the age of 18, many other nations rely on higher ages such as 20 or 21 to demarcate the separation of juvenile offenders and juvenile correctional systems from their adult counterparts. Read the article from The Crime Report here.…

Turn Prisons Into Colleges

Turn Prisons Into Colleges

Today, only a third of all prisons provide incarcerated people with the opportunity to attain an education beyond high school standards. San Quentin is one of these institutions - and its Prison University Project remains one of the country’s most vibrant programs for inmates, so much so President Obama awarded it a National Humanities Medal in 2015 for the quality of its courses. The idea of expanding educational opportunities…

Curious about the legislative process in California? Read this handy guide

Curious about the legislative process in California? Read this handy guide

The process of government by which bills are considered and laws enacted is commonly referred to as the Legislative Process. The California State Legislature is made up of two houses: the Senate and the Assembly. There are 40 Senators and 80 Assembly Members representing the people of the State of California. The Legislature has a legislative calendar containing important dates of activities during its two-year session. Idea All legislation begins…

Why Philly DA Krasner could let 180+ juvenile lifers out of prison early

Why Philly DA Krasner could let 180+ juvenile lifers out of prison early

Philadelphia has sentenced more teens to life in prison with no chance of parole than any other jurisdiction in the world — and that meant it had the largest number to resentence after the U.S. Supreme Court two years ago ruled that its 2012 ban on mandatory life-without-parole sentences for minors must be applied retroactively. Read the story from The Inquirer here.…

Don’t fall for this trick that would gut criminal justice reform

Don’t fall for this trick that would gut criminal justice reform

A letter to the editor published the Sacramento Bee from Governor Jerry Brown who is responding to the ballot initiative that aims to gut the widely popular Proposition 57. Just a scare tactic Re “Keep violent sex offenders locked up” (sacbee.com, Feb. 22): Don’t be fooled by Assemblymember Jim Cooper’s latest ploy to scare Californians into supporting his cynical and deeply flawed ballot initiative, which would gut…

For Henry Montgomery,
a Catch-22

For Henry Montgomery, a Catch-22

Henry Montgomery's case changed the course for so many people who were sentenced to life without parole as children. However, his “meaningful opportunity for release” came with impossible conditions. Read the article from the Marshall Project here.…

Restoring a community through dialogue

Restoring a community through dialogue

We are so honored to be featured in San Quentin News. Our work inside prison creating dialogues with incarcerated people, survivors and district attorneys are central to our work. Read the entire article here.…

It took 10 minutes to convict 14-year-old George Stinney Jr. It took 70 years after his execution to exonerate him.

It took 10 minutes to convict 14-year-old George Stinney Jr. It took 70 years after his execution to exonerate him.

This week marks the 13th anniversary of the Supreme Court's decision in Roper v. Simmons which abolished the death penalty for children. For Black History Month, we honor the memory of George Stinney. Stinney was the youngest person in modern times to be put to death. However, although the death chamber is now outlawed for children, the US continues to sentence its youngest citizens to die in prison with life…

Let's treat violence like a contagious disease

Let's treat violence like a contagious disease

"It turns out that the greatest predictor of a case of violence is a preceding case of violence. And so we see that violence is, in a way, behaving like a contagious disease." This is why we need to talk about trauma. Watch the Gary Slutkin's TED talk here.…

Criminal justice must be about healing

Criminal justice must be about healing

Crime damages everyone: the victim, the criminal and loved ones on both sides. Society must address all these hurts. Read the Guardian article here.…

States Set Aside Millions of Dollars for Crime Victims. But Some Survivors Don’t Get the Funds They Desperately Need.

States Set Aside Millions of Dollars for Crime Victims. But Some Survivors Don’t Get the Funds They Desperately Need.

State programs that provide assistance to victims of violent crimes, such as battery, child abuse, & domestic violence, often exclude victims within the criminal justice system & those with the highest risk of being victims. California is no exception. ALL trauma & crime survivors need & deserve our support - our humanity depends on it. Read the full story published by The Trace here.…

Ballot Breakdown: These initiative ideas are headed your way

Ballot Breakdown: These initiative ideas are headed your way

Direct democracy can be an exhausting business. This year civically engaged Californians will be expected to have informed opinions about affordable housing and park funding, how best to divvy up cap-and-trade money, how to spend the state’s new gas tax money, and when new voter-approved laws ought to be enacted.And those are just the measures on the ballot so far. Read the article from CalMatters here.…

Proposition 57 Credits Explained

Proposition 57 Credits Explained

Initiate Justice explains the prop 57 credit system though this helpful infographic. There is a lot of confusion about the credit earning part of #Prop57, so here is an infographic we made to explain how all people in CA state prisons can earn time off of their sentence under Prop 57. Every person in prison is eligible for these credits (yes, including people convicted of 'violent' offenses!), except people serving…

Practical money advice from a self-taught financial advisor

Practical money advice from a self-taught financial advisor

Curtis Carroll turned his life around in San Quentin by learning the stock market, and now he’s teaching others to do the same. Here, he shares some basics to know before you start buying stocks. Read more about "Wall Street" here…

California weighs limits to pepper spray in juvenile jails

California weighs limits to pepper spray in juvenile jails

A state lawmaker and reform groups are pushing to bar officers from carrying pepper spray in juvenile jails in California, one of six states that still allow employees to patrol with the caustic chemicals in youth detention facilities. Their calls come as the Board of State and Community Corrections prepares to consider regulatory changes Thursday that would limit using pepper spray to times when there is an imminent threat and…

Will L.A. Follow S.F.’s Lead in Wiping Out Pot Convictions? Nope

Will L.A. Follow S.F.’s Lead in Wiping Out Pot Convictions? Nope

In a disappointing move, L.A. county's DA announced she would not be following the lead of her counterparts in San Francisco and San Diego, who are dismissing or reducing thousands of past misdemeanor and felony marijuana convictions due to the legalization of the substance this year. This is particularly concerning as the L.A. District Attorney’s Office prosecuted more people for violating marijuana laws than any other prosecutor’…

Why I Am Not a Recidivist

Why I Am Not a Recidivist

"How do you assess the recidivism risk of those who have spent decades confined for crimes committed when they were minors?"Cases like Jeremiah's are why we need to reevaluate the parole process. Read the Artice via The Crime Report here.…

The Great Crime Decline

The Great Crime Decline

Drawing the right lessons from the fall in urban violence. Read the New Yorker Article here.…

California Supreme Court: Law Barring Direct File of Juveniles Is Retroactive

California Supreme Court: Law Barring Direct File of Juveniles Is Retroactive

"The possibility of being treated as a juvenile in juvenile court — where rehabilitation is the goal — rather than being tried and sentenced as an adult can result in dramatically different and more lenient treatment." Thanks to the California Supreme Court's ruling yesterday, Prop 57 can be applied retroactively to pending court cases in preventing the transfer of juveniles into the adult justice system. Read the full article here.…

Unlocking Opportunity: New Burns Institute Report Highlights Disparities in California’s Youth Justice System

Unlocking Opportunity: New Burns Institute Report Highlights Disparities in California’s Youth Justice System

At every decision-making point in the #CA youth justice system, youth of color face an uphill battle. More likely than their peers to be sent to institutional placement away from their communities & families, youth of color are being put on a trajectory towards diminished life outcomes in 41 of 58 counties. High rates of youth re-arrest (74%) and re-conviction (54%) are a reflection of systemic failures exacerbated by the…

Redemption is not just for me

Redemption is not just for me

Emile DeWeaver has spent the last 20 years incarcerated. On Christmas, Gov. Brown commuted his 67 year sentence. In his piece for the San Francisco Chronicle, DeWeaver, a writer and community organizer, shares how his commutation has brought hope to the men around him at San Quentin State Prison: "I’m at the middle of how Gov. Brown’s act of mercy fuels exponential change. People who said they…

Police, schools, form partnership to combat child trauma

Police, schools, form partnership to combat child trauma

This school district in Michigan is disrupting the school to prison pipeline with their "Handle with Care" initiative- a new effort in coordination with local police departments to assist children dealing with trauma. The correlation between childhood trauma and incarceration is extraordinary, with some estimates hovering around 90%. "Recent national studies showed that 60% of American children have been exposed to crime, violence or abuse. Another 40%…

National Prison Rate Continues to Decline Amid Sentencing, Re-Entry Reforms

National Prison Rate Continues to Decline Amid Sentencing, Re-Entry Reforms

During the State of the Union address last night, Donald J. Trump announced that he will take on prison reform "to help former inmates... get a second chance at life." Although the shift in tone is crucial, this is the same Administration that wants to scapegoat vulnerable populations to roll back the detrimental #WarOnDrugs & #ToughOnCrime era. As 35 states - including #CA - have cut their crime…

California may up its rehab efforts to keep formerly incarcerated people from returning to prison

California may up its rehab efforts to keep formerly incarcerated people from returning to prison

In CA, the justice reform era imprints a positive mark on human consciousness. Successful policies have recognized new research on brain development, rehabilitation has become a priority of incarceration, conversations around humane treatment have surfaced, crime rates have fallen across the state (with the exception of certain counties), & reducing recidivism has bipartisan support. The momentum for progress only moves forward - the proposed budget reinforces our need for an…

Jerry Brown's final State of the State address

Jerry Brown's final State of the State address

This morning, Gov. Jerry Brown gave his final State of the State address. He closed by addressing public safety, showing his support for each and every member of our community, and making a plea to the people of California: "Take time to understand how our system of crime and punishment has evolved, how other states and countries have devised their prison systems and what changes might we now make.…

Phil's Story : The Impact of Policy

Phil's Story : The Impact of Policy

Phil spent nearly two decades in prison for a crime he committed as a teenager. Now, he's home and ready to let the world know that change is possible and very necessary. We are proud and very grateful that Phil is here with us today. Thank you Generator Collective for creating a platform to humanize policy, so that we could share his story to those ready to listen.…

California’s death penalty law may hinge on outcome of Arizona case

California’s death penalty law may hinge on outcome of Arizona case

Is California's death penalty and LWOP law so broad that it violates the constitution? If the the Supreme Court takes Arizona's case and decides that does violate the constitution this could mean big changes in California. We believe that to be constitutional, we must not define capital crimes so broadly that they give prosecutors and jurors virtually unlimited discretion to decide which murders should be punished by death. Such an…

Redemption for Offenders and Victims

Redemption for Offenders and Victims

"Restorative justice is a centuries-old approach to crime, with roots in tribal cultures. It seeks to empower people to address the harms, needs, and obligations that arise from crime by bringing together victims, offenders, and members of their respective communities. The face-to-face open dialogue process is focused on personal accountability and reparation. It requires the seemingly impossible: that victims and offenders share deeply personal and painful life experiences with…

The Innocence Deniers

The Innocence Deniers

When convictions are clearly wrong, these prosecutors don’t just hinder justice— they actively work against it. Read this article written by our board member Lara Bazalon on Slate here.…

Violent crime in Oakland down 23 percent since 2012

Violent crime in Oakland down 23 percent since 2012

By HARRY HARRIS from the East Bay Times OAKLAND — When it comes to violent crime, the city is “considerably safer” than it was five years ago, thanks to a combination of police strategies and community involvement, city leaders said Tuesday, optimistic that the trend can be sustained. The message was delivered at a city hall news conference by Mayor Libby Schaaf and Chief of Police Anne E. Kirkpatrick. They were…

The U.S. Has Fewer Crimes. Does That Mean It Needs Fewer Police?

The U.S. Has Fewer Crimes. Does That Mean It Needs Fewer Police?

From the New York Times by JOSE A. DEL REAL With the close of the year, the tally was in: Crime was down in the 30 largest cities in the United States, and even a worrisome uptick in urban murders had subsided. More than two decades of safer cities has cleared the way for major changes in the nation’s criminal justice system: fewer prisoners, shorter sentences and more pardons.…

Holiday Reading List

Holiday Reading List

A curated collection of essential reading for a holistic understanding of where criminal justice reform is today and how we got here. 1. Inside This Place, Not of It: Narratives of Women's Prisons Edited by Ayelet Waldman and Robin Levi with a Foreword by Michelle Alexander As is often the after-thought in any movement, the question now comes in the criminal justice reform conversation: What about the women? In this…

THURSDAY, DEC 14TH: PACK THE COURTS

THURSDAY, DEC 14TH: PACK THE COURTS

We Need Your Support Bay Area Friends! Tomorrow, December 14th at 8:00 AM we are packing the courts in support of PJ. PJ has been incarcerated since the age of 14 and twenty years later was granted parole. During his time in prison he has completed his GED, has become a state certified rape and crisis counselor, has become certified domestic violence counselor, and has earned his Associate's degree…

The #MeToo Stories We’re Not Hearing

The #MeToo Stories We’re Not Hearing

The Silence Breakers who didn't make the Time cover. Sara Kruzan, Laverne Dejohnette, and all the other women whose stories of relentless violence calls for a collective awakening.…

This Judge Defends ‘Unredeemables’ Even as He Sends Them to Prison

This Judge Defends ‘Unredeemables’ Even as He Sends Them to Prison

Published in The New York Times By ALAN FEUER DEC. 8, 2017 It seemed routine when Judge Jack B. Weinstein issued stiff prison sentences to three young men who had robbed a family at gunpoint in the Cypress Hills Houses in East New York last year. After all, when the men broke into the family’s apartment, there were, in addition to adults, five children inside — all of them 10…

California Incarceration Rates Across California’s Counties

California Incarceration Rates Across California’s Counties

The Center for Juvenile and Criminal Justice has compiled a wealth of statistics detailing the different levels at which California's 58 counties send their residents to correctional institutions. Explore their interactive map to view population-adjusted rates of adult and juvenile arrests and incarcerations across the state. Read more here…

Watch Adam Foss, our board member, give a TED Talk on shifting the focus from incarceration to transforming lives

Watch Adam Foss, our board member, give a TED Talk on shifting the focus from incarceration to transforming lives

Watch the TED talk here When a kid commits a crime, the US justice system has a choice: prosecute to the full extent of the law, or take a step back and ask if saddling young people with criminal records is the right thing to do every time. In this searching talk, Adam Foss, a prosecutor with the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office in Boston, makes his case for a…

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is a milestone document that was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on December 10, 1948, at the Palais de Chaillot in Paris, France.…

Reigning in the Almost Unchecked Power of Prosecutors

Reigning in the Almost Unchecked Power of Prosecutors

We recommend reading John Pfaff's book on mass incarceration Locked In “John Pfaff of Fordham University is both a law professor and an economist. Author of "Locked In: The True Causes of Mass Incarceration—and How to Achieve Real Reform," he says state and local policies matter far more than changes in the federal system. At about 700 inmates per 100,000 residents , the U.S. incarceration rate…

Amended Proposition 57 Regulations Fail to Meet Community Requests

Amended Proposition 57 Regulations Fail to Meet Community Requests

CDCR has amended Proposition 57 regulations following the public comment period, receiving over 41,000 comments from 12,000 individuals. The majority of commemnts called for retroactive credit earning, inclusion of Third Strikers in non-violent early parole consideration, and credits to apply to the timing of a youth offender hearing before the Board of Parole Hearings. The amended Prop 57 regulations are below, thought they fail to address the above…

Justice at Last for the Youngest Inmates?

Justice at Last for the Youngest Inmates?

Juvenile Life Without Parole sentences still on the table years after Supreme Court recognition that young people are 'constitutionally different' from adults — "less in control of their emotions and more able to change over time"…

WANT TO GET INVOLVED?

Sign up for our mailing list to get updates
about our programs.