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Toward Saner Approaches That Treat Communities More Humanely While Saving Taxpayers Money

What: ACLU SoCal Pasadena-Foothills Chapter Public Forum
When: Tuesday, November 10th, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Where: Neighborhood Church, 301 No. Orange Grove Boulevard, Pasadena


The decades-long war on drugs and war on crime have produced baleful results. In recent years, California’s prison population exploded to over double the 80,000 its prisons are designed to hold, with prisoners crammed into spaces not intended to house inmates, at great expense to California taxpayers.

Alternatives to Incarceration

Especially hard hit have been inner city black and brown communities: 1 in every 15 Black men and 1 in every 36 Latino men are incarcerated compared to 1 in every 106 white men.

Now, in response to the court-mandated realignment of the state's prison system, California counties are going on a jail-building binge. Twenty-eight counties are leveraging $1.7 billion in state grants to build and expand 35 jails. And Los Angeles County is looking at a $2-billion plan to replace the downtown Men's Central Jail and build a new women's jail in Lancaster.

Many Californians—including some law enforcement officials—think there must be better ways. Proponents argue that saner incarceration approaches can repair harms suffered by victims, treat the drug-addicted and mentally ill, and rehabilitate offenders, while also reducing prison and jail costs and improving public safety.

Join our panel of experts in discussing alternatives to incarceration—split sentencing, bail reform, home detention, criminal code and plea bargain reform, and even prison abolition.

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  • Jess Farris, Policy and Advocacy Counsel at the ACLU of Southern California, with experience working to prevent and correct wrongful convictions.
  • Mark-Anthony Johnson, Director of Health and Wellness at Dignity and Power Now and an organizer with the Coalition to End Sheriff Violence in L.A. Jails.
  • Tarek Shawky, former public defender who founded and is now managing partner of his law office, which has a special focus on bail reform and alternative sentencing.
  • Sharon Kyle, Moderator, Professor of Law at People's College of Law and Publisher, LA Progressive.

The event is free and open to the public. For more info, contact Dick Price & Sharon Kyle, ACLU SoCal Pasadena/Foothills Chapter, dick_and_sharon@yahoo or 213.434.4643.

Cosponsors: ACLU of Southern California • All Saints Church • Justice Not Jails • LA Progressive • Neighborhood Unitarian Universalist Church • YWCA Pasadena

Alternatives to Incarceration