Sara Kruzan’s Small Step

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Dick Price: Make no mistake, for Sara Kruzan—raised by a drug-addicted mother, gang raped and turned out as a prostitute at 13, sentenced to life without parole at 17 for killing that pimp—her release today on parole in Orange County after serving 19 years in prison is a big step.

Michelle Alexander, Justice on Trial Film Festival Hit Homeruns

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Sharon Kyle: “Unraveling this mass prison industrial complex is going to take more than a little tweaking here and there – this is going to take nothing short of a mass movement.”

Justice-Involved Californians Deserve a Second Chance at Success

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Brian Goldstein: It’s time to ban the box. Applying for a job is tough, particularly in this challenging economic climate. For those Californians with a criminal history, the obstacles for getting employment often appear insurmountable.

The American inJustice System

Michelle Alexander Ethan Nadelmann

Michelle Alexander, author of “The New Jim Crow” will be speaking at the Justice on Trial Film Festival at Loyola Marymount University on Oct 20th.

Reentry Barriers: Employment and the Technology Divide

Last Mile participants (Forbes Magazine)

Selena Toji: For men and women returning from decades of incarceration, understanding technology can present a significant barrier to success.

Governor Brown: Don’t Use County Jails for Civil Immigration Detention

ice detention

Brian Goldstein: In this era of Realignment, California cannot afford to repeat mistakes from the past and throw away money to unnecessarily expand local jails, lease private facilities, and use local jails for ICE detentions.

More Diversion, Fewer Detention Sentences for LA Juveniles

Kruti-Parekh

Diane Lefer: Whether dealing with youthful or adult offenders, Powers reiterated how important it is to start educational and rehabilitative programs to build learning into a daily routine when the person is still inside.

Governor Brown, California Legislature Squeezed on Criminal Justice Reforms

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Brian Goldstein: California continues to work through the implications of Realignment, and develop a safe plan to reduce its adult prison population to 137.5 percent of design capacity by December 31, 2013, per Supreme Court mandate.

Jerry Brown’s Cynical, Unethical Prison Plan

Associated Press

Peter Laarman: No amount of high-end religious training appears to have shaped Jerry Brown’s conscience sufficiently for him to escape the all-too-familiar pattern of selling himself politically.

Paying Your Debt to Society

Young Black Man

Levi LaChappelle: This is for Steve, the guy who stands tall and proud because he thinks being tough on crime—other people’s crimes—equates with moral integrity.

Alternatives to Jerry Brown’s “More Cages” Prison Plan Proposed

steinberg prison proposal

Dick Price & Sharon Kyle: Brown’s proposal to ease overcrowding in California prisons without releasing inmates early has drawn quick opposition from prison reform activists, spawning an alternative approach from fellow Democrats.

Michelle Alexander: A Moral Revolution

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Michelle Alexander: I have not been speaking publicly about the relationship between drones abroad and the War on Drugs at home.

Four Ways to Better Manage Jail Bed Space

la county jail

Kate McCraken: Counties that continue to rely on prisons and jails to contain their criminal element put unnecessary strain on their sheriffs. Criminal justice partners need to embrace county-specific interventions and apply community resources to reduce the use of incarceration and increase public safety.

Still Marching: 50 Years Later

March on Washington

Bruce Reilly: Fifty years after the March on Washington, reports indicate we are more segregated than ever, with a greater class disparity than any country except India.

My Friend Todd Ashker: History of a One-Sided Dialogue

Danny Glover

Denis O’Hearn: Todd Ashker is a major mover in the movement for peaceful change in California’s prisons and on its streets.

My Friend Todd Ashker

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Denis O’Hearn: I know him as a thoughtful human being who has dedicated his life to peaceful change, to helping his fellow prisoners by learning the law and sharing his knowledge.

The Unnecessary Detention of Undocumented Youth

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Selena Teji: While California’s juvenile justice system engages in reform, the archaic and punitive traditions of the immigration system hamper its progress and undermine the best practices approach taken by the legislature and local officials.

Holder Did Not Go Far Enough on Sentencing & Drug Policy Reform

prison overcrowding

Kevin Zeese and Cliff Thornton: There are important steps that could be taken by President Obama and Attorney General Holder right now, without Congress, that could end injustice being suffered by tens of thousands and prevent future injustices.

Torture By Design: Saying No to the Architecture of Solitary Confinement and Cruelty

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Raphael Sperry: It’s simply ridiculous to ignore the problems that CDCR has caused with the conditions in their solitary units, and fear-mongering about gangs is not a response. Even if the hunger strikers were gang leaders, they would still be entitled to human rights.

How to End California’s Prison Hunger Strike

5 core demands

Tom Hayden: Both sides must set aside their profound differences and look at steps to relieve the worst elements of solitary confinement.

California Needs Fresh Start in Corrections

Jeffrey Beard

Jonathan Simon: Secretary Beard’s public statements since coming to the job reflect a complete failure to acknowledge the gravity of the human rights abuses his agency is guilty of and an apparent commitment to defend the status quo at any cost.

Troubled Young People Deserve Compassion, Not Punishment

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Lizzie Buchen: Long prison sentences endanger the public by inhaling funds that could otherwise be used for addressing the root causes of crime.

Brown’s Revised Budget Discriminates Against Mentally Ill

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Lizzie Buchen: The bill stigmatizes people who have suffered from mental illness by shackling them with harsher supervision, and unreasonably assumes they will receive better supervision and treatment from the state than from the community.

How Abusing Prisoners Jeopardizes Public Safety

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Angola 3 News: Hidden behind the walls, huge numbers of human beings have their spirits broken daily. Secretly, many suffer false disciplinary reports, illegitimate confiscation or destruction of personal property, physical beatings, rape, and sometimes fraudulent criminal penalties.

LA County Jail Opponents Take Fight to Castaic

castaic protest

Mary Sutton: Members of the Los Angeles No More Jails Coalition took their fight against the expansion of LA County’s notorious jail system to one of the proposed construction sites at the Pitchess Detention Center in the city of Castaic.

Jerry Brown’s Corrections Budget: More Cages, Little Else

cdcr fire camps

Diana Zuñiga: Jerry Brown’s “plan” keeps California on the same road we’ve been down for 30 years: more money going to corrections and even more allocated to prison expansions.

Torture, or Mental Health Treatment? Leaked Video Shows American Prison Conditions

maced prisoner

Bruce Reilly: Few Americans are privileged to see the “help” a mentally ill prisoner can expect to receive if they are acting out or “decompensating,” to use the medical term. This incident is nothing special; similar procedures happen in every prison across the nation.

Black Women: Lighter Skin, Lighter Prison Sentence

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Jessie Daniels: Women deemed to have light skin are sentenced to approximately 12% less time behind bars than their darker skinned counterparts. Having light skin also reduces the actual time served by approximately 11%.

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