Brendan Hamme: Jails and prisons cannot justify discriminatory treatment of LGBT prisoners under the guise of keeping them “safe.”
Prison Industrial Complex
Alex Friedmann: While people might question the notion of a privatized police force that benefits financially when people are arrested, allowing companies to profit when people are imprisoned has become an accepted norm
Amy Patton: Founder and organizer of the festival, Susan Burton said the film festival screened documentaries that exposed “grave defects in the American criminal justice system.”
Dick and Sharon: In our second in a series of articles focusing on the impact our criminal justice system is having on the lives of Angelinos, we sit down with Susan Burton, founder of A New Way of Life Reentry Project, CNN Awardee and herself , formerly incarcerated.
Diversion programs direct people with mental illness who have been arrested or are incarcerated for non-violent offenses to effective community-based programs that combine treatment with supportive housing, as well as medication management and employment assistance.
Patrisse Cullors-Brignac and Diana Zuñiga: While the Sheriff’s Department must vastly improve the ways it deals with the mentally ill in jails, no new facility and no new management is going to make sheriff deputies into therapists.
Kevin Zeese: Majorities now support the outright legalization of marijuana and oppose the war on drugs. The public has overcome decades of misinformation to justify the drug war.
Sikivu Hutchinson: After pursuing policies that have deepened racial segregation, the Obamas’ eleventh hour “awakening” to racial inequality is yet another kick in the teeth to people of color staring at the brutal mirage of economic “recovery”.
Diana Barajas: The conditions of isolation are incompatible with human nature, as social interactions and sensory stimulation are critical to human health and brain function.
Mary Sutton and Diana Zuñiga: None of the options before the Board considers a reduced jail population that would result from the County investing available realignment dollars into community-based programs that truly reduce recidivism.
Hector Villagra: The proposal would not allow a new sheriff to implement his vision. Instead, the new sheriff would be tied to a plan that ignores the real problems that plague the jails.
Brian Goldstein: Public safety issues are especially challenging given the state’s ongoing prison overcrowding crisis and the ever-evolving juvenile justice system. The state passed a number of successful reforms in 2013. Yet, 2014 already brings some exceptional juvenile justice legislation that is worthy of recognition and support.
Tara Culp-Ressler: 44 states and the District of Columbia have at least one jail that houses more people with mental illnesses than the largest state psychiatric hospital does.